Removing excessive nitrate from water is essential because it causes eutrophication which in turn has a harmful effect on aquatic life, resulting in a reduction in biodiversity and posing a danger to people’s health when the water is used for drinking. In this study, nitrate removal from aqueous solutions was studied using an ion exchange resin (Purolite A520E) in batch and fixed-bed column experiments. Batch adsorption kinetics was very well described by pseudo-first-order, pseudo-second-order and homogeneous surface diffusion models for resin doses 1.5 and 3.0 g/L at a nitrate concentration 20 mg N/L. Column kinetic data satisfactorily fitted to the empirical Thomas model and a numerical model based on advection–dispersion equation for filtration velocities 2.5 and 5.0 m/h at a column height of 12 cm and inlet concentration 20 mg N/L. The experimental and Thomas model predicted breakthrough adsorption capacity ranges for the two filtration rates were 12.0–13.5 and 8.2–9.7 mg N/g, respectively, whereas the maximum adsorption capacity determined using Langmuir adsorption isotherm model in the batch study was 32.2 mg N/g.