Easy Arugula Quinoa Salad Recipe with Lemon Dressing

Arugula quinoa salad is a mouth-watering blend of fluffy quinoa, peppery arugula, creamy avocado, and crunchy pumpkin seeds tossed in a lemon dressing. This salad is a delicious and nutritious dish that’s both flavorful and simple.

a picture of a bowl of arugula salad

If you enjoy salads or are searching for a healthy option that’s equally satisfying, this salad has got it all. It’s the perfect choice for a fast, effortless lunch, light dinner, or side dish.

🤍Why you will love this recipe

  • It’s filled with flavor and texture!
  • It’s a hearty salad that is healthy and filling thanks to the protein-packed quinoa and fiber-rich arugula.
  • Quinoa arugula salad is easy to make with a few simple ingredients.

Here is what you will need

This is an overview of the ingredients and steps to make this arugula quinoa salad recipe; scroll down for a printable recipe card with exact measurements and detailed instructions.

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  • Cooked Quinoa
  • Baby Arugula
  • Avocado
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Lemon Juice
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Maple Syrup
  • Dijon Mustard
  • Garlic Powder


How to make arugula quinoa salad

Prepare the ingredients: Cook the quinoa according to package instructions, and rinse under cold water, and allow it to reach room temperature.

Make the homemade dressing: Whisk together the lemon juice, extra-virgin olive oil, maple syrup, dijon mustard, and garlic powder.

quinoa arugula salad ingredients in a bowl

STEP 1: Place all of the salad ingredients into a large bowl

STEP 2: Pour the dressing over the top of the salad. Gently toss to combine and serve.

arugula salad mixed in a bowl

Ingredient notes and substitutions

Baby Arugula – Arugula is a tender and peppery green that adds a burst of flavor to this salad. You can substitute it with other leafy greens such as, field greens or baby spinach if you’re not fond of its peppery taste.

Pumpkin seeds – Adding seeds enhances the texture of the salad. Pumpkin seeds can be substituted with an equal amount of sunflower seeds r or sesame seeds.

Quinoa – Quinoa is a fantastic addition to salads because it is a complete protein. You can use any kind of quinoa to make this saald. I like to use either red or white quinoa which are the most common.

overhead view of salad on two plates

Serving Suggestions

Arugula salad tastes great with just about any main course. We like it with pork, or chicken.

It’s also a great dish to serve at a backyard barbecue with potato salad or macaroni salad.

Recipe variations

The versatility of this salad allows for endless possibilities so that you can enjoy a different flavor experience each time you make it.

Add more protein – Boost the protein content of your salad by adding grilled chicken, steak, shrimp or your favorite plant-based protein.

Add beans – To boost the protein content of your salad, consider incorporating garbanzo beans, white beans, black beans, or roasted crispy chickpeas into the mix.

Mediterranean quinoa arugula salad – Add a Mediterranean flair by adding kalamata olives, feta cheese and sun-dried tomatoes.

Add more vegetables – toss in fresh red onion, cherry tomatoes, red bell peppers cucumbers, grilled or roasted zucchini or roasted red peppers.

Add cheese – For added flavor, consider adding crumbles of goat cheese, feta cheese, or blue cheese.

arugula salad on a plate

How to store leftover salad

Quinoa arugula salad can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to two days. To avoid ending up with a soggy salad, it’s best to keep the dressing separate if you are planning to have leftovers.

How to make quinoa arugula salad ahead of time

Making this salad ahead of time is easy, even though it is simple, preparing this salad in advance can still save you time.

Cook the quinoa and mix the dressing together up to three days ahead of time. When it’s time to serve, cut the avocado into cubes, assemble the salad and toss it with the dressing.


  • To avoid a soggy salad, the arugula must be completely dry before putting together the salad. A salad spinner works well for this.
Can I use other grains to make this quinoa arugula salad?

Yes, couscous, bulgur wheat or rice are good alternatives for quinoa in this salad.

Can I serve this salad warm or cold?

Yes, this salad can be served with warm quinoa, with a slightly wilted arugula, or toss it with cold quinoa for a refreshing chilled salad.

What color quinoa is best to use to make quinoa arugula salad?

You can use any color quinoa that you like. I prefer red quinoa for the extra color in the salad, but white is a good option too.

Can I make the homemade dressing with vinegar instead of lemon juice?

Yes, you can easily substitute and equal amount of apple cider vinegar, rice wine vinegar or white wine vinegar to make the salad dressing.

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Please comment and give it a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐star rating below!

arugula salad on a plate

arugula quinoa salad recipe

a delicious and satisfying salad that is easy to make!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 209 kcal


  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 4 cups baby arugula
  • 1 avocado chopped
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder


  • Cook the quinoa according to package instructions. Rinse under cold water and allow to cool to room temperature.
  • In a small bowl whisk together 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 1 teaspoon maple syrup, 1/4 teaspoon dijon mustard, 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder and set it aside.
  • Place 1 cup cooked quinoa, 4 cups baby arugula, 1 avocado (chopped), 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds into a large salad bowl.
  • Add the dressing and toss.


Store leftover salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two days. 
If you anticipate leftover salad, dress the salad individually to avoid a soggy leftover salad.
See article above for tips, variations and more!


Calories: 209kcalCarbohydrates: 19gProtein: 4.4gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2.4gMonounsaturated Fat: 9.1gSodium: 23mgPotassium: 44.4mg
Keyword arugula quinoa salad
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