Lunch & Dinner, Recipes

Kale Superfood Salad

Here in the Midwest, it’s the time of year when farmer’s markets start to get a lot of variety. Heirloom tomatoes are finally ripe, and cucumbers are perfectly juicy and crisp.The perfect way to use up all those veggies in a filling meal without turning on the oven or even the stove is to make a big salad.

Though I make variations of this year round, it’s best at the height of summer.

kale superfood salad

What makes a superfood? It’s not an official term, but is used to describe nutrient rich, whole foods high in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. I use the term in this recipe, because that’s what the Merc, my local co-op, calls a similar salad. (And it makes me feel healthy enough to indulge in gelato for dessert.)

Kale Superfood Salad

inspired by a salad from The Community Mercantile deli

Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 bunch curly green kale (or your preferred variety)
  • 8 oz spinach
  • 1/2 head of romaine letture
  • 2 carrots, shredded
  • 1/2 cucumber, sliced
  • 1/2 C chopped red cabbage
  • 1/4 C almonds, sliced
  • 1/2 red pepper, cut in strips
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • 1/2 C quinoa, prepared
  • your favorite dressing (I use the tahini dressing from this salad)

Directions:

  1. Prepare quinoa. You’ll have extra, but I find it’s always easy to throw in something else later. Rinse 1 cup quinoa in a fine sieve until water runs clear, drain and transfer to a medium pot. Add 2 cups water and salt and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium low and simmer until water is absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes. Set aside off the heat for 5 minutes; uncover and fluff with a fork.

  2. Chop, dice, and slice all your veggies.

  3. Pull the kale off the ribs and tear the curly leaves into bite-size pieces. Toss with spinach and romaine.

  4. Add the veggies on top of the greens. Layer with quinoa, and top with almonds and dressing.

You can substitute vegetables and use whatever you have on hand. This is just all my favorites, and I think they taste great with the tahini dressing. Use sunflower seeds instead of almonds, or garbanzo beans instead of quinoa.

I like the kale because it gives it a bit of a bite, but the tender spinach and crisp romaine balance it out. Best of all, you won’t feel guilty splurging on dessert after this healthy salad!

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