Power Up Salad with Baby Kale, Quinoa, Blueberries and Walnuts
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Quinoa blueberry power salad

On Sunday, amid 82 degree weather and the first few whispers of DC summer humidity, nothing could have felt more right than this bright, flavorful, and green salad. It features lots of my favorite things, including blueberries, toasted walnuts, and tender baby kale.

The kale in this case was brought to me by the folks at Dole®, who recently offered me a chance to try some of their new Power Up Greens™ blends. These feature dark, nutrient dense lettuces that are ready to eat. I got three boxes: baby kale, baby kale & greens, and spring mix & greens. I enjoyed them all, but it was the two baby kale mixes I liked most; I was especially into the baby kale & greens mix, which features baby kale, baby spinach, baby green chard, and baby red chard. We all know the value of these greens–Vitamin K, A, C, manganese, calcium, antioxidants–but it can be hard to squeeze them in when schedules get crowded and kitchen time is cut short. Baby green blends, and the salads they create, make it easy.

dole power up greens

I was really pleased with how sweet and palatable the greens were; I’ve definitely had baby kale that was slightly bitter. I threw them into a couple of smoothies and a couple of salads through the week. In the end, this salad was my favorite. I decided to stick with the “power” theme, and I threw in some of my favorite everyday superfoods: walnuts, quinoa, and blueberries, which aren’t in season yet, but so help me, I couldn’t resist. A simple, lemony vinaigrette brought it all together. I could eat lunches like this every day, and be happy.


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Power Up Salad with Baby Kale, Quinoa, Blueberries and Walnuts

Author – Gena Hamshaw
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Yields: 4 servings


  • 3/4 cup quinoa (135g)
  • 1 1/3 cups water (315ml)
  • 5 ounces baby kale or baby spinach (150g)
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1/2 cup walnut halves (60g)
  • 1 batch simple Champagne vinaigrette
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F / 175°C.
  • Place the quinoa in a fine-mesh sieve and rinse under cold running water for about 30 seconds. Transfer the rinsed quinoa to a medium pot and add the water. Bring the quinoa to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover the pot, turn the heat to low, and simmer until all the water has been absorbed, about 13 minutes. Remove the quinoa from the heat and allow it to sit, covered, for 5 minutes. Uncover the pot and fluff the quinoa gently with a fork. Re-cover and allow the quinoa to cool for 15-20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, line a baking sheet with parchment, Silpat®️, or foil. Arrange the walnuts on the sheet and transfer it to the oven. Toast the walnuts in the oven for 5-7 minutes, or until they're very lightly browning and smell nutty and fragrant. Remove the nuts from the oven and transfer them to a cutting board. Allow them to cool for five minutes, then chop them roughly.
  • When the quinoa has cooled, transfer the cooked grains to a large mixing bowl. Add the greens, blueberries, and walnuts to the bowl, then pour the dressing over them. Mix the salad well and taste it. Add salt and freshly ground black pepper as needed. Serve or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Of course and as always, I would encourage you to modify the recipe to suit your tastes.


Just as a little bonus, the folks at Dole are letting me share a recipe for baby kale chips–no dehydrator required! There are a bunch of kale chip recipes on this site, but this is my first time sharing a simpler, oven-ready version. Using the baby kale makes it all the simpler.

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DOLE® Power Up Greens™ Baby Kale Chips

6 cups DOLE® Power Up Greens™ Baby Kale
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
4 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Sea salt, to taste

Preheat oven to 325°F.

1. Toss together DOLE® Power Up Greens™ Baby Kale, nooch, olive oil and pepper to coat. Arrange kale in a single layer on two nonstick baking sheets. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until crisp and just starting to brown around the edges.

2. Cool kale chips completely before gently removing them from the baking sheets. Sprinkle with sea salt and serve or keep fresh in an airtight container.

There are endless variations for seasoning the kale for these tasty little chips. Try using a tablespoon of Asian sesame oil and a tablespoon of sesame seeds OR a tablespoon of walnut oil with a teaspoon of grated lemon zest.

Check out the Power Up Greens™ for yourself, friends, or just use these recipes as inspiration to start taking advantage of spring’s fine crop of tender baby greens. I’ll be back here tomorrow with some special news–so, till soon!


This post was sponsored by Dole®. All opinions expressed in the post are my own.

This post may contain affiliate links. If you use these links to buy something I may earn a commission. Visit my privacy policy to learn more.

Categories: Recipes, Salads, Side Dishes
Method: Stovetop
Ingredients: Kale, Quinoa
Dietary Preferences: Gluten Free, Soy Free, Vegan
Recipe Features: 30 Minute or Less, Quick & Easy

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  1. This is exactly what I was looking for, thanks for this recipe. It sounds delicious and I have all the ingredients on hand. I will be making this today for my family Memorial Day celebration.

  2. Love it! You’ve got all the super foods incorporated into one salad. The antioxidants from the blueberries, protein and fiber from the quinoa, and calcium from the kale. Yummy!

  3. Great recipes to put a twist on the regular salad. This looks amazing! I would love to try this for myself. I usually stick to my boring salad and sometimes feel like I’m nearly getting sick of it. Thanks for sharing this!

  4. Just saw this in the store- its priced about the same as organic produce and yet….. This product line is not organic. Which is too bad since spinach is on the “dirty dozen”
    No sale here.
    I’m headed back to trader joes and their awesome organic baby greens for less than $3

  5. Hi Gena, I’m assuming you veganized their kale chip recipe by swapping parmesan for nooch, but FYI you left “parmesan” in the instructions portion of the recipe (not in the ingredient list). I saw Kathy feature this on her blog too and I’m wondering- you are such a stickler for healthy foods and I know not everything has to be organic, but greens are SO contaminated with pesticides. Would you actually eat these on your own dime or would you buy another brand to make sure it was organic? Very curious.

    • Ugh, Amy, I’m trying to edit it, but I’m having blog issues and can’t tonight. But anyway, you rock for pointing that out. Thanks.

      Re: greens — I don’t worry about it, to be honest. I think organic is vastly preferable for greens, but I don’t always buy organic. Sometimes I get non-organic greens at Safeway, and even non-organic berries and bananas. I hate getting non-organic apples, but it happens when I’m on the go. It’s just one of those things I can compromise on.

      These greens just seem high quality to me — I would definitely eat them on my dime if they were at a local grocery. If given the choice between them and organic, I would probably buy organic instead, but from a taste perspective they are identical to the Earthbound Organic ones. And if they were what was available (ie, no organic option), I wouldn’t hesitate at all. Just my take 🙂

      • Yes I didn’t mean from a “high quality” or “taste” perspective, I just meant from a pesticide perspective. I know too much about endocrine disruptors (and I’m sure you do too) coupled with the fact that greens are so heavily sprayed, it just doesn’t make sense to me. Sure a family with limited access to foods might consider this a great option, but I meant you- someone who obviously has abundant access and makes a conscientious effort to avoid unhealthful foods. I find it odd that you are promoting them (except for the fact that, of course, you were sponsored). Hope this doesn’t sound harsh, I just usually get the vibe that you don’t promote stuff you wouldn’t buy on your own dime. I have a hard time believing you’d pay the price for these instead of an organic option (which I’m sure you virtually always have a choice at the places you shop), and that pesticide contamination doesn’t factor heavily into your choice.

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  7. Gena, you’re like a mind-reader! This weekend, I just bought the huge Earthbound Farm Organic baby kale bag from Costco and have been making Kale chips using your Tomato Tahini Dressing. Just thinking I probably should try a different flavor, I go on your site and Voila! another recipe! I will say that I’ve made kale chips in the oven and though it’s good, the dehydrator gives it a much more chip-like texture. Thanks!

  8. Kale by far is one of the healthiest vegetable particularly a source of calcium. I would actually have modify the recipe if there are more to add like red tomatoes and maybe decorate them with kale flowers.

  9. The baby kale chips sound like a wonderful idea and this salad looks delicious! Sometimes the simplest salads are the most enjoyable.

    Thanks G!

  10. Mmmm, loooks lovely. I love fruit and nuts with my greens 🙂 I’m in Geneva this month and the farmers’ markets have such an abundance of beautiful local leafies!

  11. I feel perfectly fine about eating blueberries in spring! I had some this morning that were organic, local, and tasted great…so seasons be damned. I’ve never been a fan of fruit in salads, though. Only dried fruit. But leave it to you to make this look so appealing!

  12. This looks delicious but I am worried they are not organic and don’t want to eat them. Is this my ED talking? I struggle with this sometimes and end up spending a lot more money.

  13. whenever i make homemade kale chips, i end up eating them all in 2 days haha. i actually have to put the pan away because i notice if i leave them out, i grab a few every time i walk by! they are one of my favorite salty snacks 🙂

    also…that weather this weekend? SUCH a tease. i saw frost on the ground in pittsburgh this morning on my way to work. boo.

  14. Salad seasoooooooon!

    (I like the quinoa accent. I get a little heavy-handed with the grains if I add them to a green salad. Because delicious. But this looks like a good way for me to learn to exercise a little restraint and enjoy them as a more balanced component.)

  15. I adore baby kale!:) It’s so much sweeter than larger varieties, though I’ll always love my dino kale the most:) I’ve got to check those salad varieties out. I’ve heard so much about them. Going shopping tomorrow, so consider it done:) Great recipe!

  16. I love Dole! I think they are a fab company & are doing such a great job making fresh fruits & veggies more accessible. I’m a fan of the pre-washed greens too–I think they are the *new* “fast food” (or should be). As I recall, isn’t the founder of Dole vegetarian, or at least vegetarian friendly?? I could be wrong…

    Lovely salad–something I may just make tomorrow for lunch 😉

  17. Oooh, this salad sounds incredible. I love the addition of quinoa and the mix of sweet blueberries. Baby Kale is one of my favorite greens. I sometimes have a hard time finding it…but when I do…I grab several containers!

  18. My local favorite cafe BlackAdder just started serving a wonderful KALE salad. It was dinner. I seriously am addicted. And I have you and Ani to thank. Great role models! Have a great week.