Abstract Organic wastes were successfully used as soil amendment to improve agrosystems productivity. Yet, the effectiveness of this practice to enhance plant antioxidant capacities has received little attention. Here, we assess the effect of municipal solid waste (MSW) compost (at 40 t ha −1) on growth, polyphenol contents and antioxidant activities of Mesembryanthemum edule. MSW compost application significantly increased the soil contents of carbon, nitrogen, calcium, phosphorus and potassium. This was associated with higher nutrient (N, P, and K) uptake, which likely led to the significant improvement of the plant biomass and relative growth rate (RGR) (+93% on average) as compared to the control. In the same way, the fertilizing effect of the added organic matter significantly enhanced the antioxidant potential M. edule, assessed by radical scavenging activity, iron reducing power and β-carotene bleaching capacity. This was associated with significantly higher antioxidant contents, mainly total phenols and flavonoids. Heavy metal (Pb, Cd, Cu, and Zn) concentrations were slightly increased upon compost application, but remained lower than phytotoxic values. Overall, our results point out that short-term MSW compost application at 40 t ha −1 is efficient in enhancing the productivity together with the antioxidant potentiality of M. edule without any adverse environmental impact.