Lemony Chicken Salad with Quinoa, Arugula, Avocado and Creamy Basil Dressing- an easy low-carb salad, high in protein and full of amazing flavor! Sub chickpeas for the Chicken! Vegan adaptable! 

Lemony Chicken Arugula Quinoa Salad with Avocado and Creamy Basil Dressing- an easy high protein salad that is full of amazing flavor! #salad #chickensalad #quinoa #quinoasalad #arugula #arugulasalad

I’ve been all about salads lately and this one is no exception. I think I could eat this every day! The lemony basil dressing can be made “creamy” or kept light and lean, and either way this Chicken Arugula Quinoa Salad is a winner.

Oh, and did I mention this is vegan adaptable? I really love it with crispy chickpeas (roasted in the oven) or crispy tofu.

But since I happened to have some leftover Simple Baked Chicken from the last post, I’ve been using it in bowls and salads during the week, which my husband has been totally loving. Such an easy way to meal prep!

This would also be great with The Best Grilled Chicken.

Chicken Quinoa Salad | 60-sec Video

Lemony Chicken Arugula Quinoa Salad with Avocado and Creamy Basil Dressing- an easy low-carb, high protein salad that is full of amazing flavor! #salad #chickensalad #quinoa #quinoasalad #arugula #arugulasalad

This salad is very packable, perfect for lunches on the go.

I prefer keeping the components separate as you see above, then dressing and tossing before eating. That way the arugula stays nice and fresh.

Lemony Chicken Arugula Quinoa Salad with Avocado and Creamy Basil Dressing- an easy high protein salad that is full of amazing flavor! #salad #chickensalad #quinoa #quinoasalad #arugula #arugulasalad

Lately, we’ve taken to eating salads for dinner.

Somehow eating a little lighter at night feels better- I know I sleep better!

Lemony Chicken Arugula Quinoa Salad with Avocado and Creamy Basil Dressing- an easy high protein salad that is full of amazing flavor! #salad #chickensalad #quinoa #quinoasalad #arugula #arugulasalad

The Lemony Basil Dressing is made with olive oil and lemon base. You can keep it light and lean, or stir in some sour cream ( or yogurt or mayo) to give it a delicious creamy richness. I love this both ways.

Lemony Chicken Arugula Quinoa Salad with Avocado and Creamy Basil Dressing- an easy low-carb, high protein salad that is full of amazing flavor! #salad #chickensalad #quinoa #quinoasalad #arugula #arugulasalad

Just wanted to share an easy way to meal prep and incorporate both the Simple Baked Chicken and the Everyday Quinoa during the busy workweek for mid-week meals.

Having a couple of staples on hand makes it easy to whip something up quickly and easily.

Hope you enjoy this Lemony Chicken Arugula Quinoa Salad!

Let me know what you think below- and how you adapt, and especially if you are vegan!

More Salads you may like:

  1. Chipotle Grilled Chicken Salad with Corn, Peppers and Arugula
  2. Little Gem Salad with Dilly Ranch Dressing
  3. Classic Caesar Dressing with The Best Grilled Chicken
  4. Grilled Salmon Salad with Creamy Cilantro Lime Dressing
  5. Spinach Salad with Grilled Veggies & Herb Chicken
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Lemony Chicken Arugula Quinoa Salad with Avocado and Creamy Basil Dressing- an easy high protein salad that is full of amazing flavor! #salad #chickensalad #quinoa #quinoasalad #arugula #arugulasalad

Chicken Quinoa Salad

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 26 reviews


Lemony Chicken Quinoa Salad with Arugula, avocado and Creamy Basil Dressing- an easy high protein salad that is full of amazing flavor! Sub Chickpeas for the Chicken, VEGAN ADAPTABLE!


Units Scale
  • 8 ounces baked Chicken breast ( or one can chickpeas, drained)
  • 2 extra large handfuls baby arugula
  • 1 1/22 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 12 scallions, sliced
  • optional additions: scallions, oranges, sunflower sprouts, hemp seeds, any nut or seed

Creamy Basil Dressing:

  • 1/2 cup basil (packed down tight, about 1 ounce)
  • 2 fat garlic cloves
  • zest from one medium lemon
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, more to taste
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon cracked pepper
  • 1/81/4 cup mayo or sour cream (optional) or sub plain yogurt, vegan mayo, vegan sour cream or cashew cream.


  • Make the Basil Dressing: Place basil, garlic and lemon zest and a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Pour in  olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and pulse to combine (don’t make it too smooth).  Place in a bowl or jar and whisk in some sour cream if you want it creamy ( adjusting salt as needed). This will keep 4 days in the fridge.
  • Assemble salad. (You can keep all components separate if packing to take to work)
  • Toss arugula with quinoa and scallions and some dressing to lightly coat. Divide among two bowls. Add chicken and avocado and any nuts or seeds that you like. Spoon a little more dressing over the chicken and season the avocado with salt and pepper. Enjoy!


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 515
  • Sugar: 3.9 g
  • Sodium: 1069.2 mg
  • Fat: 32.6 g
  • Saturated Fat: 7.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 42.3 g
  • Fiber: 10 g
  • Protein: 18.6 g
  • Cholesterol: 25.2 mg

Share this with the world!

to get recipes via email

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star


  1. My teenage son had SECONDS on this salad!!! He said it was because the dressing was so amazing. Thank you for getting my kid his greens for the day!!!

  2. Delicious!! Love all the textures and flavors. Made as directed except subbed Gardein chick’n and cooked quinoa in some vegetable broth. Will 100% make this again.

  3. This is such a refreshing salad! I had a ton of kale from the market so we made it with that and added both chickpeas and shredded chicken. It was delicious! The oranges added a great flavor and the dressing will definitely be on repeat. Thanks for another wonderful recipe!

  4. This recipe is amazing! I had it for three nights in a row! The dressing is magic — the combo of fresh basil and lemon just tastes like springtime. One night I added some cashew cream to it in order to extend the last bit I had, which made it nice and creamy. This will be a go-to recipe!

  5. Hi Sylvia, thank you for another amazing recipe! This is a favorite in our house. We made it tonight with your “Best Grilled Chicken” and it was sooo good. Had some leftover quinoa and it was simple and fast, perfect for a hot summer night <3

  6. Incredible!! Really delicious and definitely a favourite. Prepared this for others who said it was amazing. Everything I have tried from this blog and been so tasty. Thank you for sharing your recipes.
    Would it be possible to search for recipes based on highest rated?

    1. Thanks so much! In the catagory tab on the recipe page, click on “most popular recipes” those are usually the highest rated!

  7. i love this recipe! i’ve never had such a craveable salad before, we love making it during heatwaves since we don’t even have to turn the oven on. we just use quinoa that we made earlier and shoved in the fridge.

  8. So yummy! As a girl in her 20s who grew up eating frozen pizza several nights a week (my parents were absolutely amazing, but very busy and did not love to cook), I never had anyone to model cooking for me. This recipe accompanied with the chicken and quinoa recipes were simple enough for me to do as a complete novice but still tasted so so good and full of flavor! I made this on a Monday for dinner, stored the components separately and was able have a healthy meal at the ready all week.

    1. Love it, Erica- and so glad you are learning to cook healthy meals for yourself. It feels very satisfying, doesn’t it?

  9. This was delicious and really didn’t take that long to make, even making the chicken according to her directions and the everyday quinoa. Yum!

  10. I made this yesterday for dinner, its amazing, Soooooooo much flavor, and freshness. I suggest making chicken and quinoa the day before so its cold so it doesn’t wilt the salad. A little putzy so worth it ,makes 2 good size portions. Does not keep well.

  11. This was a wonderful meal. Light, delicious, and healthy. I discovered Sylvia’s website only two months ago and it’s the cooking website I always dreamed of. I don’t bother looking anywhere else now. The recipes are all excellent. And unlike many healthy-conscious recipes, they are not overly time consuming and fiddly.

    This recipe was bright and cheerful.

  12. We loved this recipe. We made the dressing vegan style and served it with chicken for the meat eaters. Everyone loved it. You’re definitely teaching an old dog some new tricks!! Thank you.

  13. The creamy basil dressing makes this salad shine. This was the perfect easy supper for a hot, smoky evening. We used chickpeas and added some cherry tomatoes for a splash of color. Enjoyed the salad along with homemade sourdough bread.
    Love your recipes Sylvia!

  14. We’ve been making this recipe for abou a year. It’s been made so often, the sheet I put in my recipe binder is starting to show it’s wear! We leave out the chicken and avocado but add in radishes, carrots, and olives.
    I love reading through the recipes and find so much inspiration, especially during this time of social distancing. Thanks to you, my husband and aren’t missing going out to eat so much!

  15. Just made this! Due to Covid-19, having to deal with lack of the major ingredient (no basil); for the dressing, used parsley & cilantro from the garden. No scallions but used garlic chives. I know the taste is completely changed but it’s still delicious! Sylvia, all your recipes are divine!

    1. Thanks for sharing your adjustments Sandy- glad you gave it a go with what you had. Perfect!

  16. I love this recipe! I made it a handful of times this summer and plan to make it as a side tomorrow for Christmas Eve dinner. Thank you!

  17. Loved this recipe, simple, quick and tasty. We all loved it. I added roasted pistachio nuts and as suggested baby spinach and rocket (arugula). Thank you! Jane (Ibiza, Spain)

  18. Great salad, have made twice and just wonderful. The Basil dressing is fantastic, use on many other salads. Great find because I have bumper crop of basil in my garden. Thanks

  19. Hey Sylvia,
    Another great one! I made the dressing tonight and used sour cream. Lenny thought I used too much at 1/4 c. I also added some of those super sweet little baby tomatoes and they really complemented the tart of the lemon juice.



Our Latest Recipes