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Healthy You

Fresh Recipe: Kale Quinoa Tabbouleh with Lentils

Wednesday, June 21, 2017 8:02 AM

When you think clean eating, do you think boring salads that leave you feeling unsatisfied? Emmaline Rasmussen, MS, RD, LDN, Clinical Research Dietitian at NorthShore, wants to change that notion! Clean eating can be delicious and satisfying and has become quite popular recently. That’s because eating fresh foods helps your body naturally obtain nutrients and vitamins while your taste buds get to enjoy the flavors. Not only are they flavorsome, but tomatoes and kale are high in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory components. This tasty recipe is one that everyone will enjoy:



  • 1 ⅓ cup water
  • ⅔ cup dry quinoa
  • 2 large tomatoes, diced
  • 1 can (about 1 ¾ cups) cooked lentils, drained and rinsed well
  • 1 bunch kale, finely chopped
  • 1 medium red onion, diced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, diced
  • ⅔ cup parsley, finely chopped
  • ½ cup mint leaves, finely chopped
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ⅓ cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 ½ tsp sea salt, plus a generous pinch
  • ½ tsp black pepper

*Optional: ½ cup crumbled feta


  1. Rinse the quinoa in a fine mesh strainer (this removes some of the natural bitterness quinoa can have) and add it along with water to a medium saucepan with a generous pinch of salt.
  2. Bring to a boil, cover with a lid, reduce heat to medium low and simmer until all of the water has cooked off and the quinoa has sprouted little “tails,” about 15-20 minutes.
  3. Once cooked, remove quinoa from heat and cool completely while preparing other ingredients.
  4. Combine tomatoes and salt in a medium bowl, stir and set aside. This allows the tomatoes to release their natural juices, which will add flavor to the dish.
  5. Whisk the olive oil, lemon juice, cumin, and black pepper together in a large bowl.
  6. Add the parsley, mint, and kale. Toss.
  7. Add lentils, onion, and bell pepper.
  8. Pour the tomato mixture over everything and mix well.
  9. Once completely cool, add the quinoa and mix.
  10. Serve topped with crumbled feta, if desired.

What is your favorite clean eating recipe to make?