Don’t be afraid of this delicious kale salad recipe! It’s packed with flavor with a simple five ingredient dressing and dried cranberries.
The charisma for kale has been around for a few years now. More and more people are growing the nutrient rich cabbage in their garden these days. The most popular variety, curly leaf, is pictured here in my backyard this week where kale is in full bloom. Even though it has been around for centuries, people like me are learning to love its hearty nature and healthy benefits. Not only is kale one of the most easiest vegetables to grow, it has numerous vitamins, minerals and even protein. Pretty close to the perfect food. After World War II, Europeans were encouraged to cultivate and eat it in order to replenish their diets after years of rationing. Today, Kale is incorporated into soups like Olive Garden’s famous Zuppa Toscana, into fresh fruit smoothies, hot pasta dishes or a rainbow of salads. Costco makes a really popular kale salad kit with poppy seed dressing and dried cranberries. Have you tried it?
Since kale is in the cabbage family, it also makes a great base for salad..and this gal loves a good salad! Today, I’m going to show you how to make a fresh and simple creamy kale salad recipe that pairs great with late summer barbecues. I will show you how to prep the kale from garden to table. If you have a food processor to chop all the veggies, this salad comes together quickly. Pour over my simple dressing (only five ingredients), let the flavors meld awhile and off you go!
How To Make Kale Salad
Come on in to my kitchen!
Before we start to put the kale salad recipe together, we need to prepare the kale. Whether you pick it fresh from the garden or get it from a market or grocery store, kale leaves have a tough vein that runs through the middle. Using a sharp knife, simply cut out the center vein and stem from 1/2 pound of kale (large bowl size 🙂 To make it easy, you can fold the leaf in half longways and make one cut down the line through both layers. Discard the center vein and stem.
Rinse the leaves well to remove any dirt. Pat them dry with paper towel or use a salad spinner. Love those spinners!
Using a food processor, finely chop the kale leaves and place them in a large bowl. You can chop the leaves by hand, but the food processor is sooooo much quicker. I think perhaps it is my favorite appliance in the kitchen. Everything from hummus to salsa to slaw. I always recommend one to newlyweds!
Next, using the same food processor, finely chop one carrot stick, one celery stalk, one small onion, one large garlic clove and half a green bell pepper. Did your mother ever tell you to eat your colors? Well, this kale salad recipe would make her proud!
How to Make Kale Salad Dressing
To make the five ingredient kale salad dressing, whisk together 3/4 cup quality mayonnaise, 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 1/2 lemons), 1 tablespoon fresh lemon zest, 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Pour it over the veggies and mix well. The secret to any good salad is to give the flavors opportunity to blend together. Refrigerate the kale salad for at least one hour before serving and feel free to toss in toasted sunflower seeds or dried cranberries if you want to!
Colorful, creamy, healthy and delicious. Homemade kale salad recipe ready for your next barbecue …and totally worth the charisma 🙂
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Kale Salad Recipe
- 1/2 pound raw kale rinsed and without stalks
- 1 carrot stick
- 1 celery stalk
- 1 small onion
- 1 large garlic clove
- 1/2 green bell pepper
- 3/4 cup quality mayonnaise
- 4 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon zest
- 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Using a sharp knife, remove the center vein and stems from 1/2 pound of kale.
- Rinse the leaves well to remove any dirt. Pat them dry with paper towel or use a salad spinner.
- Using a food processor, finely chop the kale leaves and place them in a large bowl. Next, using the same food processor, finely chop one carrot stick, one celery stalk, one small onion, one large garlic clove and half a green bell pepper.
- To make the five ingredient dressing, whisk together 3/4 cup quality mayonnaise, 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 1/2 lemons), 1 tablespoon fresh lemon zest, 2 tablespoons granulated sugar and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
- Pour the dressing over the veggies and mix well. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving. If desired, add toasted nuts and/or dried fruit.