Whip up this vegan kale salad as a quick lunch or light side dish! Flavorful and easy to throw together this kale salad recipe is topped with a tangy tangy balsamic dressing.
This kale salad recipe comes together in a pinch when you need it and makes the perfect addition to any table (as do other salads as main meals!)
Likewise, you can prep it ahead of time for a nutrient-dense lunch or whip up a big batch as a family side dish.
Topped with both crunchy and sweet items, the kale salad is loaded with healthy fats. And though it does already have seeds and flavor, mix and match your favorite toppings to create a slightly new salad each time!
- Candied pecans
- Dried cherries
- Sunflower seeds
- Roasted cashews
How To Prep Kale To Make It Less Bitter
Before you throw this salad together, take the time to prep your kale properly as seed in the video below.
One of the common complaints I get as a Certified Nutrition Coach, is about the natural taste of kale- it’s bitter! Massaging it with olive oil, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt helps remove the bitterness.
However, you need to make sure you’re massing the kale until the leaves turn from a dull green to a bright green. That’s when your kale is prepped.
Not only does this remove the bitterness from the kale but it also ensures the kale lasts longer in the fridge.
Can You Eat Kale Raw?
Of course! Kale is a leafy green and thus it can be eaten raw. In fact, some of the nutrients in kale can be reduced if cooked (especially if cooked too long!).
And it's not just a summer vegetable! Whipping up a winter harvest pasta recipe (go with chickpea noodles to make it gluten-free!) is a great way to enjoy it too.
However, it is a cruciferous vegetable. If you’re not used to eating cruciferous veggies may notice some gas. This is your body learning to break it down.
Kale Salad Dressing
This vegan kale salad recipe is topped with a tangy balsamic dressing. Made with only three ingredients this salad dressing is on the tangy side.
Meaning, you definitely don’t need a lot of the salad dressing for maximum flavor.
However, this vegan kale salad is tasty with any salad dressing (I have a tahini maple one I love to pair it with).
So, use what you’ve got on hand, and don’t be afraid to switch it up!
Your protein for this kale salad depends on what you want the salad for! If using the salad as a side dish, no protein is needed (it's delicious on the side of bacon-wrapped cod!).
However, if you’re planning to make this easy kale salad as a full-on meal, you may want to add something to it.
Furthermore, this kale salad tastes delicious with:
- Quinoa (though this voids the paleo and whole30 approvals)
- Roasted tofu
- Pan-fried tempeh
Likewise, it’s also tasty with non-vegan protein like a hardboiled egg, leftover chicken, or steak.
FAQ’s And Substitutions
Everything can be interchanged in this recipe. Use different dried fruits in place of the cranberry and blueberry for a new flavor.
Likewise, adding in some nuts gives a great crunch.
And of course, interchanging the kale salad dressing is alright too (so long as it meets your diet prerequisites)
The kale salad holds in the fridge with the dressing for 1-2 days. Without the dressing, the salad lasts 4-5.
Healthy Dinners In 30 Minutes Or Less
Struggling to make dinnertime WORK for your hectic lifestyle?
If you’re looking for even more easy, healthy dinner recipes, check out The Busy Moms E-Cookbook- simple dinners for busy moms, where I’ve gathered 30 healthy dinner recipes that can be made in thirty minutes or less.
- Simple and healthy
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Plus get bonus tips on how I food prep as a mom of three, how to make healthy eating simple & pantry staples to stock up on.
Easy Kale Salad
- 4 cups kale prepped
- 1 bell pepper chopped
- ½ cucumber sliced
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- ⅛ cup hemp hearts
- 2 tbs olive oil
- 1.5 tbs balsamic vinegar
- ½ tbs honey mustard
- Place all salad ingredients into a bowl.
- Combine all dressing ingredients in a small dish and whisk them together
- Pour the dressing over salad just before serving.
- Just about anything can be interchanged in this recipe. Use different dried fruits in place of the cranberry and blueberry for a new flavor.
- Likewise, adding in some nuts gives a great crunch.
- And of course, interchanging the kale salad dressing is alright too (so long as it meets your diet prerequisites)
- The kale salad holds in the fridge with the dressing for 1-2 days. Without the dressing, the salad lasts 4-5.
Nutrition values are estimates only, using online calculators. Please verify using your own data"
A super simple side dish to whip up in a pinch!
This kale salad works next to a larger part of a meal or as a nutrient-dense lunch option the next day. Thus, boost your nutrients and eat for color with this easy salad recipe!