This Kale Salad is packed with crunch and flavor. It is one of our favorites for a few reasons. Not only it is very simple to make, it serves elegantly well during special occasions and the holidays.
Crispy, healthy and delicious salad for your guests and family!
The salad can be served with not only Lemon Juice, other Citron can be used such as Lime.
When kale had its moment (you know, the year or so where seemingly the entire world was obsessed with it?), we were bombarded with ways to use it.
We were making it into chips, sauteeing it like spinach, and masking it with sweet fruits in our smoothies to reap its benefits without having to taste it.
Now, its fifteen minutes of fame are over, but that doesn’t mean the variety entrenched in this vegetable has disappeared.
For seasoned health and fitness buffs, and self-proclaimed epicureans, kale has been in the recipe book for years, and that’s not going to change. If you want a flavorful and healthy salad, try making this kale salad recipe.
Why We Love Kale
Apple, Celery and Pomegranate are good combination for delicious Kale. The vegetables will give crispness to the salad goes very well with smooth texture of Kale.
As this salad is one of our favorites for a few reasons, to start of it’s so darn simple to make. Unless you dump on an entire bottle of dressing, it’s pretty hard to screw up this salad.
Second, kale is so versatile, it can be paired with just about any seasonal vegetable (though we’re partial to our recipes). And finally, kale is a fabulous green to add to your repertoire. If you get sick of rotating through your same greens, add kale as a fresh taste.
Ingredients and Flavors
For this kale salad, we’re using celery roots, pomegranates, and a simple vinaigrette. Simple and delicious.
Kale, our main ingredient, is best in autumn and spring, but it’s available any time of the year.
This particular salad would taste great in autumn or spring, but again, you can have it any time of the year, and you’ll still love it. Kale can be bitter, but the rest of the ingredients will help to brighten it up.
Celery is an underrated vegetable. It’s very versatile and tastes great year-round. That being said, it is best in autumn and spring, making it perfect for this salad.
For this recipe you can use celery root or celery stalks, as celery root will be heavier than celery stalks, so the lemon in the dressing will lighten it.
Pomegranates are a lovely fruit with a sweet and sour taste. With this one simple ingredient, you’ll create a salad with a diverse flavor profile.
Pomegranates add so much flavor to a dish, and they’re loaded with antioxidants. You’ll feel like a health you can take over the world after just one bite of this salad.
Finally, the dressing for this salad is a basic vinaigrette made of oil, lemon, and vinegar, similar to the one prepared in our other salads.
This classic combination will keep the salad light and brighten all the flavors. Lemon is the perfect acid for this vinaigrette, as it pairs well with all three main ingredients.
How To Make A Delicious Salad With Kale?
The full recipe with exact recipe measurement is listed below in the recipe card. For now, here’s a quick guide on how to make this perfectly.
To begin, clean your kale properly and wash it at least 3 times to remove any debris and dirt. After washing the kale, chop the kale into bite-sized leaves as they will become soft and tender.
Place the bite size kale pieces in a clean bowl and set aside.
Slice the green apples or about 5 pre-cut pieces and cut them as Julienne.
Slice the celery stalk as Julienne.
Place them into iced water to make them crispy while you roast the pine nuts.
Roast Pine nuts in a pan or in oven for 2-3 minutes maximum. Then set aside.
Add the apples and celery to the kale and set aside.
Make the dressing: Combine Kosher salt or Sea Salt if preferred, Olive Oil and Lemon Juice with using a whisk.
Add the Dressing into Kale and massage it for 5 minutes, hands can be used instead of spoon or fork.
Add the pine nuts and continue mixing. Then add in the pomegranate kernels.
Transfer to a bowl or platter and serve.
That’s it! You’re ready to serve and eat your salad.
Pay close attention here, because all the fruits and vegetables used in this salad require some sort of special preparation. Not only is it best for your health to avoid consuming certain parts of these items, it’ll also taste much, much better.
For kale, be sure to only use the leaves. Cut away the stems, as you might not even be able to eat them. They are very tough and biting them will hurt your jaw and could potentially damage your teeth.
Once you’ve removed the stems, wash the leaves and dry them completely. This can be done using a salad spinner, or by blotting with a paper towel or kitchen towel.
Another important step to making kale as tasty as possible is massaging it. It may feel a little silly to give your kale a spa day, but you’ll be glad you did.
Take a touch of lemon or oil (either works, especially in this recipe where you’ll be using both later) and massage your leaves for a couple minutes. This will make the leaves less bitter, and your salad will taste better.
Be sure to adequately prepare your ingredients, especially if you are using celery roots. These are different from celery stalks, so the preparation is different.
Celery roots have a bulb which you will need to wash and peel, and then you will cut it. Most often, celery roots are cut into straws, but you can cut them however you’d like.
If you are unable to find celery roots, then celery stalks will work as it is used in this recipe.
Pomegranates are notoriously difficult to handle. Remember, we’re using the seeds, so that’s what we’re looking to remove.
There are multiple ways to remove the seeds, so try a few ways and find what works best for you.
You can cut the pomegranate in half and bang on the fruit until the seeds fall out; or you can score it, quarter it, and submerge in water until the seeds sink. There are too many methods to list, but you get the picture.
We certainly recommend trying various methods or doing some research beforehand, especially if you’ve never handled a pomegranate.
For the vinaigrette, it’s of utmost importance to use the correct amounts and mix thoroughly. They may seem easy, but vinaigrettes can be temperamental. Follow the recipe closely to ensure your dressing tastes as it should.
If you have allergy to Celery Root, Fennel can be used.
If you are allergic to pine nuts, we recommend to use Sunflower Seeds or Edamame Bean instead Pine nuts.
There are many ways to jazz up this salad. Here are a few of our favorite ways to jazz it up.
- A refreshing Kale Salad can be made with crisp curly kale, sweet apples as in this recipe, shredded carrot, toasted almonds, sharp white cheddar and a lemony dressing. So much goodness in every bite.
- If you love beets, consider adding in roasted beets or even asparagus.
- You can also add in roasted chickpeas.
- Consider adding in red onions as they are mildly sweeter and top it off with your favorite cheese.
Can You Eat Raw Kale In Salads?
Yes, you can eat raw kale as it is labeled as a superfood.
What Does Kale Go Well With?
Kale is very versatile and goes well with any fruits and vegetables.
We love it with apples, carrots, celery, Brussel sprouts, berries, and of course lemon.
Can Kale Be Used As Lettuce?
No. Kale cannot be used as lettuce. Kale falls more in the line of broccoli or Brussels sprouts. Although lettuce is a leafy green vegetable, both lettuce and kale serve different purposes.
One of the best things about salad is that it goes with anything, including this salad. In fall, pair it with this air fryer roasted chicken and or with this air fryer root vegetables, and your favorite pinot noir.
In spring, it would be the perfect side to veal or lamb chops and a dry sauvignon blanc. Serve some air fryer milk buns or dinner rolls or a baguette and a pad of butter.
Kale Apple Salad
If you’d prefer, try making this recipe into a sweet and crunchy salad. You can substitute the celery root for green apples and use the rest of the ingredients. Or, you can use both kale and celery in this salad.
Don’t worry about the green apples browning; lemon juice, an ingredient in the dressing, will combat that chemical reaction, keeping your green apples bright and fresh.
Salads are as difficult to store as they are easy to make. The best way to avoid a soggy salad is to prepare it so you can avoid storing it.
Keep your dressing and wet ingredients separate from your greens, and only prepare as much as you plan to eat.
If you must store your salad, do so in an airtight container that can be opened and resealed.
More Salads You’ll Love
This salad is so fantastic, we promise you’ll love it. You can vary it so easily or follow this recipe exactly. Either way, it’ll become a staple in your house. Don’t forget to try the Chicken Kale Stew with okra next.
Here are a few more salads to enjoy.
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The Best Kale Salad Recipe
- 1 Bowl
- Forks to mix the salad
- ½ Lb. Fresh Kale; Wash dried, and chopped.
- 2 Green Apples or 6-8 already prepared apple slices
- 1 Celery Stalk
- ⅓ Cup Pine Nuts
- 4 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Juice From Half Lemon
- 1 Tsp. Kosher Salt or To Taste; you may use sea salt if preferred.
- Place the bite size kale pieces in a clean bowl and set aside.Slice the green apples or about 5 pre-cut pieces and cut them as Julienne.Slice the celery stalk as Julienne.Place the celery and apples into iced water so they remain crispy while you roast the pine nuts.Roast Pine nuts in a pan or in oven for 2-3 minutes maximum. Then set aside.Add the apples and celery to the kale and set aside.
- Make the dressing: Combine Kosher salt or Sea Salt if preferred, Olive Oil and Lemon Juice with using a whisk.Add the Dressing into Kale and massage it for 5 minutes, hands can be used instead of spoon or fork.Add the pine nuts and continue mixing. Then add in the pomegranate kernels.Transfer to a bowl or platter and serve.
I followed your instructions and tips exactly and my kale salad turned out perfectly!! Usually when I make kale salad it’s too tough or bitter, but this had a wonderful balance of flavor and wasn’t too tough at all!
You can never go wrong with a delicious kale salad recipe! This is perfect for fall!
Thank you so much
Jersey Girl Cooks
A delicious and pretty salad!
I simply love healthy recipes that are full of flavor and texture – the perfect holiday side dish!