Marinated Kale & Quinoa Salad

Hey, let’s go back in time to about a month ago, when Mike and I were soaking up some rays on Ogunquit Beach for our anniversary. We really went all out on the experience- and especially spared no expense on the food.

Friday for lunch we hit up Cornerstone, where I ordered what I think might be the best salad I’ve ever had. It was also the most expensive salad I’ve ever had, clocking in at over $10 (it may have even been as high as $15). To be really honest with you, there wasn’t really anything on the plate, and I was curious to see if I could recreate the recipe (complete with the dijon dressing) at home for less

Enter my take on it- I added Montchevre goat cheese because I felt the sharp flavor would contrast well with the tangy bitterness of the grapefruit, but I kept everything else pretty much the way I had it (minus the ridiculous flower garnish that I actually started eating before Mike was able to stop me).


*For the dressing-

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste

*Makes one serving

For the salad-

  • 1 cup of red quinoa, cooked
  • 1 bunch of raw curly-leaf kale, washed & trimmed
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, unsalted & hulled
  • 1 red grapefruit, cut into wedges & peeled
  • Montchevre goat cheese (or any type of soft, sharp cheese), to taste upon serving

As a general rule of thumb, I like to make my dressing as I need it, since heaping tons of dressing on lettuce or kale makes the leaves get wilted and soggy (especially important to keep your produce fresh if you’re taking it as lunch for the week)!

It was harder than I thought to get enough of the flesh for the grapefruit wedges, but that could have been because I wasn’t using a very good knife. I made these as I ate each portion as well to minimize the liquids that would be sitting on the salad overnight.

All in all, the salad cost me about $10 to recreate (I keep oil and balsamic stocked in my pantry at all times), and made enough to take about three portions to work, and one dinner at home. I consider that a win.

I encourage you to try this salad- it’s a fresh, elegant salad perfect for these hot summer days. And don’t be afraid to recreate restaurant meals at home- you can save money and learn some new tricks along the way!

Keep it real,

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