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Make-Ahead Lemon Poppyseed Couscous Arugula Salad

  • Author: Danielle
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 5-6 servings 1x
  • Category: Sides
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American


This Make-Ahead Lemon Poppyseed Couscous Arugula Salad is the perfect addition to your summer lunch routine! Packed with red grapes, toasted couscous, diced celery, and peppery arugula tossed in lemon poppyseed dressing – it’s simple to make and even easier to eat!



Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon poppy seeds

Salad Ingredients:

  • 1 cup pearl couscous (also called Israeli couscous)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 1/3 cup hot water
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 cups baby arugula, lightly packed
  • 1 cup red seedless grapes, halved
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries, reduced sugar


  1. Make the dressing: Add all dressing ingredients to a mason jar or small bowl and shake/stir until well mixed.
  2. Cook the couscous: In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium low heat. Add couscous and salt, and toast until lightly browned, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Slowly add boiling water and let the couscous come to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer for about 12 minutes or until all the liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork, then set aside to cool.
  3. Assemble the salad: Once the couscous is cooled, add cooked couscous and remaining salad ingredients to a large bowl. Give the dressing an additional stir or shake, then pour over the salad. Toss until completely mixed. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours prior to serving. Store covered in the fridge for up 3 days.


Nutrition information estimated with My Fitness Pal.


  • Serving Size: about 3/4 cup
  • Calories: 289
  • Sugar: 10g
  • Fat: 15g
  • Carbohydrates: 38g
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Protein: 4g

Keywords: salad, couscous, lemon, poppyseed, make ahead, side dish

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