Creamy Tahini, Kale & Pumpkin Salad

This hearty pumpkin, kale, quinoa and tofu salad with creamy, tangy tahini dressing is a filling lunch or dinner option. Not only is it super tasty with contrasting creamy and crispy textures, but it's also wholefoods and a balanced mix of carbs, protein and fats. The combination of protein-rich quinoa and tofu, plus healthy fats from tahini, olive oil and pine nuts means this salad is going to keep you feeling full and energised all afternoon. Store this salad in a jar in layers to stop the wet and dry ingredients mixing – this will keep it fresh for up to 3 days. This makes it perfect for healthy, plant-based meal prep – plus the layers look so colourful and appetising it's sure to impress your coworkers! If you're looking for more filling salad ideas, be sure to check out Liz's other recipes like the viral Brown Rice Salad, BLT Pasta Salad with Tempeh Bacon or her Roasted Cauliflower & Pear Cous Cous salad.

Serves 4 | Prep time: 20 mins | Cooking time: 40 mins



  • 1kg/35oz pumpkin peeled, cut into 3cm pieces
  • 1 cup quinoa dry
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 bunch kale stems removed, leaves roughly chopped
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts toasted
  • 1/2 red onion thinly sliced
  • 450g/16oz extra firm tofu pressed & crumbled
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper


  • 1/3 cup tahini hulled
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 4 Tbsp water
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp sumac
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp salt


  1. Preheat oven to 390°F / 200°C. Line a large baking tray with baking paper. Place pumpkin pieces onto tray, add a generous lug of olive oil and a pinch of salt then massage with your hands so all sides are coated evenly. Roast for 40 minutes in a single layer until pumpkin is golden and softened.
  2. Add quinoa and vegetable broth to a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer on low heat for approx. 15 minutes (maybe a few extra minutes depending on stove top and pot), or until broth has been absorbed. Remove from heat, fluff quinoa with a fork and set aside.
  3. Heat a lug of olive oil in a large frypan. Add roughly 3/4 of the kale leaves and stir until wilted (roughly 3-5 minutes). Add the remainder of the kale leaves to a lined baking tray, coat in olive oil and a pinch of salt, then bake for about 10-15 minutes until slightly browned and crispy.
  4. In a separate small bowl, whisk together all dressing ingredients until well combined. Adjust the consistency by adding more water if needed.
  5. Divide the dressing amongst the jars and then add the rest of the ingredients in the following order: crumbled tofu, pumpkin, wilted kale, quinoa, red onion, pine nuts and crispy kale.
  6. Seal the jars and store in the fridge for up to 3 days. The salad should stay nice and fresh if layered correctly. When you’re ready to eat, simply tip the jar upside down into a bowl and mix to combine.

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Guest Blogger Liz – Glow Diaries

Hello! I'm Liz Douglas, a former meat loving country girl turned vegan recipe creator and podcast host. Food has always been a big part of my life, and I used to work as a product developer and food buyer for some of Australia's largest food retailers. See all recipes by Liz

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