Kiwi Mango Quinoa Salad


Kiwi Mango Quinoa Salad is full of healthy fruits and veggies, making it perfect for a light lunch or dinner!


I love my husband, I really do.

After nearly four years of marriage I’ve come to revere accept his quirky habits like removing his socks in the middle of the night and shoving them deep into the recesses of our bed sheets. Likewise, he’s come to adore endure my tendency to hang my workout clothes on doorknobs to “dry” after coming home from the gym.

Quite the pair, no? ;)

Anyway, there’s just one thing I can’t get past – the way he eats kiwi. Just hear me out though.

Instead of cutting the ends off the kiwifruit, removing the peel and neatly slicing or chopping the flesh before consuming, he eats the kiwi like an apple, skin and all. To me, the thought of eating or even licking kiwifruit skin is the visual equivalent of nails on a chalkboard. I can’t even!

It’s easier this way! he claims. Plus, fiber!

To each his own, I suppose, but I am definitely peeling the fruit for Kiwi Mango Quinoa Salad!

Tart, fuzz-free kiwi, sweet mango, crisp tomatoes, spicy red onion and bright cilantro are mixed with protein-packed quinoa and dressed with a tongue-tingling Lime & Ginger Vinaigrette. Fresh and crisp, this salad is perfect for a light lunch or supper!


First things first, I’ve been posting a few more quinoa recipes than normal, so I thought I’d take a second to give you a refresher course on this awesome super food.


Pronounced “keen-wa” quinoa is actually a seed from South America which has been eaten for thousands of years. Quinoa is gluten free, and high in protein, calcium, iron, and fiber. It’s great for people looking for a high-protein meat alternative, and I personally feel better about eating it in place of white rice, for instance, which can’t hold a nutritional candle to quinoa.


Quinoa cooks the same as rice – boil 2 parts water –> add 1 part quinoa –> cook until tender – and can be enjoyed in many ways like in casseroles, as a side dish, and in salads. It’s got a mild flavor all its own, which I can best describe as nutty, and has a fun, poppy texture. The quinoa seeds also look like little springs when they’re cooked, which is absolutely precious.


Quinoa does have a bitter coating on the outside, so make sure you rinse it well in a mesh colander before cooking. Other than that, its quickly become one of my very favorite foods. Especially when it helps pump up my sweet and fruity Kiwi Mango Quinoa Salad.


This salad comes together super quick after putting in a few minutes of face time with the cutting board. Simply combine cooked and cooled quinoa with chopped red onion, cilantro, kiwi, mango and grape tomatoes.


PS I HAVE to show you my favorite method for quickly and easily peeling kiwifruit. First, cut the top and bottom off the fruit.

Next, slide a spoon in between the peel and flesh.

Finally, spin the spoon around the perimeter, and the flesh will pop right out. It seriously takes less than 30 seconds. I keep telling him! ;)

At any rate, after chopping all the salad ingredients, mix up a refreshing Lime & Ginger Vinaigrette to drizzle on top. Combine extra virgin olive oil, sesame oil and rice vinegar in a bowl or jar.

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Add lime zest, lime juice, microplaned or finely minced ginger, brown sugar, salt, and pepper.

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Shake it all up, drizzle over the salad, and serve!


I topped my portion of Kiwi Mango Quinoa Salad with a little bit of crumbled goat cheese because I bought nearly 4lbs of it (not really, but close) in a moment of weakness at Costco this weekend and am pretty much putting it in everything to use it up, but I think the salad would be just as good without it!


Kiwi Mango Quinoa Salad

Serves 4


Kiwi Mango Quinoa Salad is full of healthy fruits and veggies, making it perfect for a light lunch or dinner!


  • 1 cup dry quinoa, rinsed & drained
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 kiwi, chopped
  • 1 mango, chopped
  • 1 cup halved cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup red onion, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • For the Lime Ginger Vinaigrette:
    • 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 Tablespoon sesame oil
    • 1 Tablespoon lime zest
    • 2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
    • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, microplaned or finely minced
    • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
    • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
    • salt & pepper


  1. Bring water to a boil in a medium-sized saucepan. Add quinoa, place a lid on top and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until quinoa is tender. Pour into a large bowl and allow to cool. Once cool, add in kiwi, mango, tomatoes, red onion and cilantro.
  2. Combine all ingredients for the vinaigrette together and pour over the quinoa, fruits and vegetables. Mix to combine. Season with more salt & pepper to taste.


Slightly adapted from Inspired Edibles

This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats,


The textures and flavors in this salad are out of this world – crunchy, creamy, sweet, and above all – FRESH!


Filling yet light at the same time, I can see myself making big batches of this all summer, for easy lunches on the go all week long.



Does your roommate or spouse have any “fun” quirky habits you didn’t know about until you moved in together?

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  1. Looks super tasty and refreshing! I’ve been making a lot of quinoa and couscous concoctions lately!

  2. Jenna 02.28.2012

    So funny! My husband eats kiwi with the skin on too. Totally grosses me out! I’ve never seen anyone else do that.

    The salad looks so good. Can’t wait to try.

  3. this is absolutely beautiful and looks positively delicious!

    i have definitely heard of people eating the kiwi skin. i, for one, cannot imagine it, but i have a girlfriend who swears it’s yummy! to each her own :)

  4. Brittney 02.28.2012

    My fiance refuses to “pull forward” in parking spots– which I do at any chance I get because it makes it so much easier to leave. If there’s an open space immediately in front of the one he’s found, he refuses to park there because he “likes backing out.” Just pull forward so you can drive right out once you get back to your car!!

  5. Lauren O 02.28.2012

    My favorite way to eat kiwi is to cut it in half width-wise and eat it with a spoon, like grapefruit! No peeling required :)

  6. Candy 02.28.2012

    Need to ask because I’m desperate – what brand strainer do you use for your quinoa? I’ve purchased two and even though they say “fine mesh” I lose so much through the holes! I have another one in my Amazon cart right now, but this was a good time to ask another quinoa fanatic ;)

    • Iowa Girl Eats 02.28.2012

      I actually just bought one from the baking aisle at the grocery store for like $2.99!

  7. I thought my husband was the only one to pull the hidden sock trick (except he also does that with his underwear)! He says it’s too keep it from the dog. Yeahhh… Right.

  8. Talk about eating a rainbow! You’re recipes are genius!

  9. Olivia 02.28.2012

    I love quinoa and love making salads out of it (and couscous as well) with lemon juice, dried cranberry, cayenne pepper, and cinnamon.

  10. Lindsey 02.28.2012

    My husband is such a messy sleeper! If I’m in bed alone, it’s easy to make in the morning & you can barely tell I was there. After he sleeps in it the blankets are everywhere! Un-tucked… crooked… pillows on the floor!!

    Eating the skin of a kiwi makes me cringe! :)

  11. Mollie 02.28.2012

    ahahahah I hang my sportsbra to dry on doorknobs all around my house! anddd this looks so good/so refreshing!

  12. Yeah, no way will I eat the skin on a kiwi, it’s like fur! And I’m totally the one with more quirky (aka. annoying) habits, my poor boyfriend ;)

  13. Leslie 02.28.2012

    DO you think this would be tasty with some lime-marinating chicken strips on top? Hmm…

  14. Hannah 02.28.2012

    I eat the skin on the kiwi too. But I defuzz it first by giving it a good scrub under running water. It has tons of vitamins and makes it easy. My husband also finds this disgusting.

  15. That salad looks so beautiful and vibrant! I do the exact same thing with my sweaty workout clothes…gotta air them out. Oh, and it boggles my mind that Ben can eat the skin of kiwis. It’s so rough!

  16. Erin 02.28.2012

    I 100% do the exact same thing with my workout clothes every day — so glad to know I’m not the only one! I hate to put them in the laundry when they’re wet, they need to air out first obviously. . .

  17. Allison 02.28.2012 Quinoa! We buy it in the 4lb bag at Costco too. This Kiwi Mango Salad is so colorful and I’m sure a light treat. I love all the quinoa recipes! Keep’em coming!

    My husbands funny little quirky habit was eating with his head down and at FULL speed! He grew up a military brat and was in the Army so he learned to eat in 2.5 seconds. Thankfully over the last 11 years I’ve been able to slowly break him of that bad habit. Breath. Taste. Enjoy.

  18. Gah! I cringe at the thought of eating kiwi skin. I’ve heard that people do it, but I just don’t understand. It seems like it would scratch your mouth and throat all up! I like to slice a kiwi in half and then scoop out the fruit with a spoon!

  19. Lauren 02.28.2012

    I’m with Ben on that one. I definitely eat the skin of the kiwi, mainly because I’m too lazy to peel them. :)

  20. I couldn’t get past the ‘furry’ texture of the skin. But thanks for the spoon tip…I’ll have to try it next time.

  21. Dee 02.28.2012

    Same way you peel fresh ginger, with a spoon, it makes peeling so easy!

    This looks like another winner. YUM!

  22. Cassie 02.28.2012

    My hubby leaves his skivvies on the bathroom floor…most annoying thing ever! And also does not load the dish washer right, drives me nuts!
    On the kiwis, my grandpa hated them because he thought the seeds had to be picked out and refused to eat them!

  23. My husband will come home from work and take off his work shirt and hang it on the kitchen barstool. He will then take his shoes off and leave them on the floor, next to the barstool. He then walks straight back to our bedroom to change out of his work pants and shoes and puts those away. Um…. WHY not just take off everything there instead of leaving half of it in the kitchen? Makes no sense to me.

  24. This looks so stinkin’ healthy and delicious!

  25. Greg Hankins 02.28.2012

    I’m glad to hear I’m not the only guy who eats a kiwi that way. It totally grosses out my wife and daughters – but I don’t mind.

  26. Jennifer 02.28.2012

    I totally eat my kiwi with the skin on and loooveee it!! wouldn’t eat it any other way :-)

  27. Greg Hankins 02.28.2012

    I forgot – I do the sock thing, too.

  28. Jill Sullivan 02.28.2012

    My husband eating sunflower seeds (which he is sitting next to me & eating now!). Can’t NOT stand the sound of him spitting the shells into the cup! ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!

  29. I actually had never even thought to eat a kiwi like an apple until I saw someone on a blog do it! And then of course I tried it and it really wasn’t bad! haha I do cut the ends off and wash it really well, but now more often than not, I just bite into it. Saves time :)

  30. I just love kiwi, but I only buy it on special occasions! I need to come up with a special occasion:-)

    • Carla Michael 02.28.2012

      Leap Day tomorrow :)

  31. I just bought a ton of kiwi and your way of getting to it is WAY more simple! Thanks!

    PS-My hubby’s quirk is putting the dirty clothes NEXT TO the basket. Never in. NEVER.

  32. Carla Michael 02.28.2012

    I’ve been hesitant to make quinoa but you have me convinced. This looks so refreshing and easy enough so I’m gonna go for it this weekend.
    Love your blogs..

  33. Love how this salad is PACKED with goodies. Gorgeous colors too.

    So your husband really eats the skin? I feel like the fuzziness would cause some sort of painful reaction to your tongue or something.

  34. Roz 02.28.2012

    Hi! I just found you from another Iowa friend on Facebook and immediately came over to your blog! What an awesome blog! I’m originally from Ames, Iowa and can’t wait to follow all of your posts! I’m also going to see if you are on Pinterest to follow along there too. Keep up the GREAT work! Love it! Roz (from “la bella vita”)

  35. yum….looks delicious. We are huge quinoa lovers here at our house! I use it a lot in soups too!

    p.s. – i love your pictures…

    xoxo from Trinidad

  36. If dogs count as roommates, my pug has a quirky habit of burying dog treats in the couch cushions to save for later. Weird! But I might have to have my husband pick up your approach to drying out workout clothes…kind of a good idea:)

  37. Emily 02.29.2012

    I love your photography in this post! Really makes the meal look ultra-delicious.
    My boyfriend has a habit of leaving cupboard doors open, which has turned into a bit of a joke as I can’t eat my dinner with a kitchen cabinet open, looking at me, so he’s always racing to get up to shut it again. This is progress though, so I’m happy :)

  38. Elyse 02.29.2012

    My boyfriend NEVER throws his trash IN the trash. It drives me bonkers! For example, empty water bottles get tossed on the floor near his nightstand, beer tops are all over the kitchen counters, and I find snack pack wrappers under our coffee table. I spend at least 10 minutes picking up trash when I get home, but I can’t help but love him! If that’s the worst thing he does, I’ll take it!

  39. Kelly 02.29.2012

    Can’t wait to try this – what is the really white chunks in this – am I missing something? Thanks!!!!

  40. Any quinoa salad I’m willing to try-this looks so refreshing.

  41. Caitlin 02.29.2012

    I totally understand why people don’t eat the kiwi skin but I, for one, LOVE it! I know it’s strange- and I have odd texture issues with things like yogurt for example, but the kiwi skin texture just doesn’t bother me. Plus it adds a little pop and a bit of a sour twang to the fruit that I think gives my kiwi eating experience a lot of depth:). Now, any time I eat kiwi without the skin, I find it sort of boring. Odd. I know. But I swear by the skins!

  42. Amy @Picture It 02.29.2012

    I can’t wait to try this salad out. I have no idea how I ever lived without your blog… you have the BEST recipes.

  43. Teresa K. 02.29.2012

    Can you use quinoa in soups? sounds almost like chia seeds but without the oil? I keep seeing a giant bag in BJ’s but haven’t gotten up the nerve to try it. Although – those ham mini quinoa cups look pretty awesome!
    btw – men get weirder as they get older with hair in places you wouldn’t think of – boys are funny – they start out these cute little things that are fun to rough and tumble with – and before you know it – they’re big ole stinky things that leave socks in strange places – lol!

    • Iowa Girl Eats 02.29.2012

      Totally! I’m thinking about trying a veggie soup with quinoa this weekend. :)

  44. I slice my kiwi, but I eat the whole thing; skin and all :)

  45. Mm… quinoa. It took me about 5 tries before I decided to actually like the stuff. I still don’t love it, but this looks amazing. Kiwi, mango… the combination must make the quinoa delightful!

  46. Julie S. 02.29.2012

    I leave my workout clothes hanging on the back of a chair in my bedroom or on a doorknob to dry, too. :)

  47. Jen 02.29.2012

    This looks SOOO delicious! What are the white crumbles? I’m thinking feta?

  48. That looks SO tasty! I like to cut the “tops” off of my kiwi and then eat the insides with a grapefruit spoon. Also super easy PLUS no sticky fingers :)

  49. I like salads with tropical fruits, I am recreating this for tomorrow’s lunch since I have all the ingredients!

  50. What a lovely rendition of the Kiwi Mango Quinoa salad Kristin and your photos are gorgeous. I also hang my workout clothes to ‘dry’ – lol. I need to update my photos… I spent the first half of my blogging year using something less than a camera ;). Very happy to get to know your blog. Cheers, Kelly.

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