Meet the ultimate Quinoa Kale Salad, featuring mighty mung beans! It’s a flavour explosion with cucumber, tomatoes, onion and fresh herbs, all tossed in a tangy sumac lemon dressing.

An up-close image showcasing a vibrant salad comprising kale, quinoa, cucumber, tomatoes, and mung beans.
Zesty Lemon Dressing Kale Salad: A Fresh Lunch Pick!

Whether it’s a nutritious lunch, meal prep, or impressing guests, this salad nails it!

Before I became a dietitian, mung beans (or moong beans, if you’re feeling fancy) were my go-to for plant-based protein. They’re like the trusty sidekick of my kitchen adventures—quick to cook and bursting with flavour.

I mean, who can resist their deliciousness and all the goodness they bring to the table? And when you throw them together with the crunchy charm of kale and the nutty vibes of quinoa, it’s like a flavour explosion in every bite!

This little creation is straight out of my playbook, inspired by my love for the Kale Mediterranean Salad. It’s a match made in culinary heaven, especially when you pair it with some Oven-Baked Lemon Pepper Salmon.

Nutrition highlights

This salad recipe is a nutritional powerhouse, featuring:

  • Protein from the moong beans and quinoa.
  • Antioxidant (sulforaphane), from the kale.
  • Fibre from tomatoes and herbs.
Perspective image showcasing a vibrant salad comprising kale, quinoa, cucumber, tomatoes, and mung beans with a plant in the background.

What goes in a kale salad?

Here’s what you need to make this nutritious salad:

  • Fresh curly kale
  • Quinoa
  • Mung beans
  • Cucumber
  • Baby tomatoes
  • Red onion
  • Fresh parsley
  • Fresh mint
  • Olive oil
  • Fresh lemon
  • Garlic
  • Sumac
  • Sea salt

How to make it

The process is quite straightforward—boil the mung beans and quinoa, chop the ingredients, and the rest is a breeze. Simple and uncomplicated!

For ideal tenderness, soak the mung beans overnight. But if you’re in a rush, a couple of hours will still do the trick.

Cooking mung beans & quinoa

A bottle pouring water into a cooking pot with dry mung beans.
Step 1: Begin by boiling the mung beans until they’re tender (not mushy). Once cooked, let them cool completely.
A cast iron pot with quinoa boiling in water with steam being produced.
Step 2: Simultaneously, cook the quinoa as per the instructions on the packet. Once cooked, ensure it’s completely cooled before incorporating it into the salad. If the quinoa is warm, it can cause the greens to wilt and make the salad soggy.

Lemon dressing

A hand holding a whisk and a jar mixing salad dressing ingredients.
Step 3: Prepare the lemon dressing by whisking together olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, sumac and salt.

Kale salad assembly

A hand holding a bowl of cucumber cubes over a salad bowl filled with cherry tomato halves and kale leaves.
Step 4: In a large salad bowl, assemble the salad by combining quinoa, kale, tomatoes, mung beans and herbs.
Top view of a hand holding a jug of dressing and pouring it onto a green salad in a glass bowl.
Step 5: About 5 minutes before serving, pour the dressing on the salad
A hand holding a pair of tongs tossing a green salad topped with a dressing.
Using a pair of tongs, gently toss to mix.
Top view image of a glass bowl of salad comprising kale leaves, mung beans, tomato slices, onion and cucumber.
You’ll end up with a vibrant and flavourful salad that’s a delightful symphony of textures.

For a complete list of ingredient measurements and detailed step-by-step instructions, you can find everything you need in the printable recipe card located at the bottom of this post.

Tips for the ‘Beginner Cook

For the freshest, crispiest salad in town, don’t settle for anything less than the crème de la crème of herbs and kale lurking in your kitchen. Now, here’s where the magic happens: about 5 minutes before serving, let that dressing loose and give it a whirl. Watch as the kale drinks in the goodness of oil and lemon, turning into a flavour-packed sensation.

Food safe storage

Just tuck them into an airtight container and pop them in the fridge for a couple of days. Keep an eye out, though—while the flavours stay on point, your salad might get a tad cozy with the dressing over time, softening up a bit. But hey, still tasty!

Now, if you’re all about that meal prep life (high five!), mason jars are your jam. Think of them as your personal salad vaults. Strategize your layers: dressing down below, then stack up that kale, mung beans, quinoa, cucumber, tomatoes, onion, and herbs like you’re building a flavour skyscraper. When it’s go-time, just tip that jar, and watch the magic happen as everything mingles together in delicious harmony!

How do you get the bitterness out of kale salad?

Ready to turn those bitter greens into a tasty delight? Here’s the scoop: give those kale leaves a spa treatment by massaging them with a hint of olive oil or a splash of lemon juice. And guess what? Salt isn’t just for fries—it works wonders on kale too! Sprinkle a pinch over the leaves, let it hang out for a bit, then rinse and dry thoroughly.

Oh, and those tough stems? They’re like the grumpy gatekeepers of kale happiness. Cut them off and chop the leaves finely. But wait, there’s more! Ever tried sweet-talking your kale? Whip up a dressing with a touch of honey or maple syrup to give it that sweet balance. Let your salad chill in that dressing for about 5 minutes—trust me, it’s a game-changer!

Angled top view image showcasing a vibrant salad comprising kale, quinoa, cucumber, tomatoes, and mung beans sprinkled with a redish powdered spice.

Whether you savour this as a refreshing Summer salad or as your year-round meal prep go-to salad, I’d be thrilled to hear from you! Share your thoughts, rate the recipe, or snap a pic and use #desiliciousrd on Instagram. Your creations truly brighten my day and inspire more deliciousness!

Desi~liciously Yours, Shahzadi

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Perspective image showcasing a vibrant salad comprising kale, quinoa, cucumber, tomatoes, and mung beans with a plant in the background.
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Get the Recipe:

Quinoa Kale Salad With Mung Beans (Vegan)

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 7 people
Meet the ultimate Quinoa Kale Salad, featuring mighty mung beans! It's a flavour explosion with cucumber, tomatoes, onion and fresh herbs, all tossed in a tangy sumac lemon dressing.

Video

Ingredients
  

Cooking mung beans and quinoa

  • 1 cup mung beans, dry and whole, soaked for about 2 hours, ideally overnight
  • 4⅓ cups water, for cooking quinoa and mung beans
  • 1 cup quinoa, washed and cooked according to packet instructions

Lemon dressing

  • ¼ cup olive oil, extra virgin, Benefits of olive oil
  • lemon, Juice, from fresh lemons
  • 3 clove garlic, fresh, crushed
  • 3 tsp sumac, powder
  • tsp salt, sea salt

Kale salad assembly

  • 3 cups curly kale, washed, leaves only, ripped into smaller leaves
  • 1 red onion, small, thinly sliced
  • ½ cucumber, washed, cut into small cubes
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, washed, cut in half (lengthwise)
  • 2 cups flat leaf parsley, washed, finely chopped, leaves only
  • 1 cup mint leaves, washed, finely chopped, leaves only

Instructions
 

Cooking mung beans & quinoa

  • In a medium saucepan, combine the mung beans with 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer over medium heat for 20-25 minutes until the beans are cooked. Aim for a tender but firm texture; not mushy beans! If you prefer, a pressure cooker can speed up this step. Once cooked, cool completely.
  • In another medium saucepan, add the quinoa with 1⅓ cup of water. Bring to a boil, cover and cook on medium heat for 8 minutes. Once cooked, cool completely.

Lemon dressing

  • Add the dressing ingredients to a small mixing jug or bowl. Whisk to combine.

Kale salad assembly

  • In a large salad bowl, combine the cooked quinoa, kale, mung beans, onion, cucumber, tomatoes, parsley and mint.
  • About 5 minutes before serving, pour the dressing on the salad and toss to mix.

Notes

Tip for the ‘Beginner Cook’

  • For the freshest and crispest salad, opt for the best-quality herbs and kale in your kitchen arsenal.
  • About 5 minutes before you plan to serve the salad, drizzle on that dressing and give it a good toss. This allows the kale to absorb the oil and lemon, elevating the taste and ensuring a smoother digestion process.

Food safe storage

  • If you’ve got leftovers, pop them into an airtight container for a couple of days. Be mindful, though; over time, the salad might lose some of its initial texture as the ingredients soak up the dressing. Despite that, the flavours remain delicious.
  • For meal prepping throughout the week, consider using mason jars for individual portions. Layer it strategically: start with the dressing at the base, then add kale, mung beans, quinoa, cucumber, tomatoes, onion, and herbs on top. When it’s time to enjoy, just pour it out, and everything will blend together beautifully!

Nutrition Information:

Calories: 306kcal (15%)Carbohydrates: 44g (15%)Protein: 13g (26%)Fat: 10g (15%)Saturated Fat: 1g (5%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gSodium: 538mg (22%)Potassium: 913mg (26%)Fiber: 9g (36%)Sugar: 4g (4%)Vitamin A: 4748IU (95%)Vitamin C: 80mg (97%)Calcium: 155mg (16%)Iron: 5mg (28%)

Keep in mind that the nutritional values provided are approximations and suggestions, and might fluctuate depending on ingredient variations, portion sizes, and recipe adjustments. This nutrition facts table cannot account for your individual needs. Your body — including your hunger and satiety cues — change daily. It’s perfectly fine to eat more or less on different days. Instead of letting food guilt take over, consider mindful eating.

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Cuisine: ethnic, Fusion, Western
Course: Main, Side, Snack
Did you make this recipe?Mention @desiliciousrd on Instagram or tag #desiliciousrd.