Creating in the kitchen has been integral to my life as a mom. Our children have grown up using real knives, measuring, chopping, tasting, and learning. In my first series of culinary  “mini movies” I share some simple recipes served up with lots of love. Check out the debut video and get ready for the whole series to drop over the next few weeks!

When creating salads, a variety of color, texture, and flavor is the key to something that tastes better than rabbit food.  This salad is one of my all time favorites and a real crowd-pleaser.  The key to being able to throw this together easily is to keep roasted beets and cooked quinoa ready in the refrigerator throughout the week.  I usually roast 3-4 large beets early in the week and use them in various impromptu dishes, such as a simple chunky beet/avocado salad with vinaigrette dressing drizzled on top.  So easy and a perfect way to repurpose the beets for a quick lunch on the go.

Ingredients (4 people):


  • 4 large handfuls of wild arugula
  • 1 large or two medium/small sized fresh roasted beets (pre-cooked store bought ones are CHEATING!)
  • 1/2 cup raw sliced almonds (or slightly more, depending on your preference)
  • 3/4 cup of crumbled goat cheese (I like the raw variety)
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa

For the dressing:

How to for the Salad:

Preheat oven to 450 to roast beets.  Wash and dry beets, cut off tops and tails, lay them in a large piece of aluminum foil, drizzle with olive oil and a little salt, wrap them up and put them in the oven for 35-45 minutes.  They are done when a fork easily slides to the center.  When cooked, unwrap and let them cool.  This can be done several days ahead and cold beets ready to go. After cooking the quinoa, spread it out on a cookie sheet in a thin layer and let it cool.  Toast the almonds in a cast iron pan, moving frequently to prevent burning.

To make the dressing, check out my Lemon Vinaigrette Dressing here! Save any leftovers in the refrigerator for lunch the next day.

In a big beautiful bowl layer the salad.  First the arugula, then the quinoa. Then the beets, shaved or sliced the very thin. I like to use my mandoline like this. Top with the crumbled goat cheese, toasted almonds, and lastly drizzle generously the vinaigrette dressing on top.

Generally this is more prep and steps than I like but it’s actually very easy and SO worth the little extra effort.

Serve with love. xxx, Leah