This beet quinoa salad is the perfect healthy lunch recipe to make ahead for the week. It’s loaded with nutrients, flavor, and texture – everyone will love it!
Quinoa salads are so versatile. Whenever I’m in a recipe rut, I reach for a quinoa salad recipe and it never disappoints. They are healthy, flavorful, easy to make, and keep well in the fridge. I’m always a fan of a “cook once, eat twice” recipe!
This beet quinoa salad utilizes seasonal fall produce, including beets, butternut squash, and kale. Toasted pecans add a satisfying crunch, and a homemade balsamic honey mustard dressing rounds everything out. From start to finish, you can have this recipe on the table in 30 minutes or less.
What’s in beet quinoa salad?
Besides beets and quinoa, you need a handful of simple ingredients to make this recipe. I’ve noted any substitution ideas in the comments below.
Quinoa is the base of this salad. I love the nutty flavor and slightly crunchy texture, which holds up well in a big salad. I used white quinoa, but you could use red or black quinoa, farro, or wild rice in this recipe, too.
Beets: I love the earthy sweet flavor of beets, and they taste great mixed in with all the other flavors of this dish. I used pre-cooked beets (found in the refrigerated section of the produce aisle). You can easily roast your own beets for this recipe – just factor in extra cooking time. If you don’t like beets, try using a different roasted root vegetable, such as carrots, parsnips, or turnips.
Butternut squash: Cubed and roasted with cinnamon, the sweet butternut squash is downright addicting in this dish. If you’d like, you can sub sweet potato, honeynut, buttercup, or delicata squash in this recipe for similar results.
Kale: Kale is one of the best greens to use in make-ahead recipes, because it maintains its texture and doesn’t get soggy and limp like softer greens. I used curly kale, and you can also use lacinato kale.
Pecans: I love the flavor of toasted pecans with these seasonal fall ingredients. Try walnuts or slivered almonds instead if you’d like.
Balsamic vinegar: We use this to add tangy flavor to the dressing.
How to make beet quinoa salad
Peel butternut squash, remove the seeds, and cut into cubes.
Toss with olive oil and seasonings, and roast in the oven.
Cook quinoa on the stovetop according to package instructions.
Slice beets into cubes.
Finely chop the kale.
Toast pecans on the stovetop.
Prepare the homemade dressing.
Add all the ingredients to a large mixing bowl and pour on the dressing.