When I stayed at the Grand Hyatt in New York City last winter, I had my first ever kale salad. It was AMAZING. So amazing, in fact, that I ordered it two more times during our trip. I love braised kale and kale chips, but I couldn’t imagine eating raw kale until I had that salad.
Since then, I’ve had kale salad several times at restaurants and enjoyed it, but I’ve been afraid to make my own because kale is so tough. I couldn’t imagine what sort of magic those chefs worked on their kale, but I figured there had to be some sort of trade secret.
Then I was chatting with Colleen, and she told me about massaging the kale.
Yes, I said massaging the kale.
The secret to a fabulous kale salad, evidently, is massaging the salad. That extra 2-minute step makes all the difference. Check out Colleen’s Instagram video demonstrating how to massage your kale and make it into a fantastic salad.
She added dried cranberries, shredded carrots, and slivered almonds to make those gorgeous concoction. Then she made a simple balsamic lemon vinaigrette. The best part is, you can let it sit for a while and it doesn’t get wilted and gross like ordinary lettuce salads. With kale salad, you can even enjoy the leftovers the next day.
This easy to make kale salad isn’t just delicious; it also has great nutritional benefits. It’s loaded with Vitamin C, Antioxidants, Vitamin K and so much more. This is the perfect salad for summer lunch at the pool, the beach, your favorite picnic spot, or work.
Here’s a printable recipe for your convenience.
- 1 head of kale
- 1½ TBS grapeseed or olive oil
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- ¾ cup slivered almonds
- Salt & pepper
- Balsamic Lemon Vinaigrette
- ½ cup balsamic vinegar
- ¼ cup grapeseed or olive oil
- 1 TBS fresh lemon juice
- Salt & pepper
- 2 teaspoons sugar (or honey)
- Wash and dry your kale. (Simply blot dry with paper towels, or use a salad spinner.)
- Slice the green leaves from the stems. Discard the stems, which are too tough to enjoy. Chop kale into bite-sized pieces/ribbons and place in a large bowl.
- Drizzle 1-1/2 TBS oil over the kale and massage the kale for 60-90 seconds. Season with a sprinkle of salt & pepper and set aside.
- In a lidded jar, combine the vinaigrette ingredients - vinegar, oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper & sugar. Shake vigorously until emulsified. Taste and adjust to your preference, if necessary. Set aside.
- Grab your bowl of massaged kale, add in the cranberries, carrots & almonds. Drizzle with vinaigrette and toss well.
Here are a few more delicious kale recipes for your enjoyment.