This healthy, flavor-packed kale broccoli salad is topped with brussels sprouts, strawberries and goat cheese for the perfect weekday lunch!!
This kale salad is a re-creation of salad from a Chicago restaurant called State in the Lincoln Park neighborhood. We went there for Sunday Funday after Thanksgiving and two of my friends ordered the salad and could not stop raving about how great it was. As I’ve mentioned a few times, kale is not my most favorite thing so I was very interested in how it could be sooooo good! I decided that I was going to use it as the inspiration to create my own version.
It took me a couple of tries to get this to the point where I thought was ready for the blog, and while I still cannot say that I love kale, it is definitely growing on me!
I think one of the keys to making raw kale taste good is massaging it. Yes, I know that sounds a little be weird, and I won't get all technical however apparently massaging kale breaks it down and it definitely makes it taste SOOOO much better than when it is just raw and plain.
Massaging the kale is really easy, you just put it all in a big bowl, mix the oil and salt together, pour that on the kale and then start massaging which is really like kneading bread. I used avocado oil, which is one of my new favorites, however, you can also use olive oil. You want to massage the kale for a bit, about 2-4 minutes until the kale turns a bright green color. The bonus of doing this is the kale will keep in the refrigerator in an airtight container for several days.
Once you have the kale ready, you'll whip up a quick poppy-seed vinaigrette. I really like making my own dressings because it's easy and then you know exactly what's in them. You can also adjust the taste to your liking. I use small jars like the mason jars you see in the photos to make the dressing so it's easy to store. I'll often make a few different types at the same time so I have a variety of the week - you'll see a couple of my favorite options in the photos below.
You can find the Sherry vinaigrette recipe in the post for this farro, grilled chicken and pistachios which I published last week. Depending on how much dressing you like on your salad, you may have some extra, so just store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to two weeks. Bring the dressing to room temperature and re-mix when you are ready to use it again.
Now that the dressing and kale are both ready, it's just a matter of topping the salad with the rest of the ingredients. I packed quite a few different veggies into this one, which gives it a nice balance of flavors. It's so good that I actually had it three times in one week, which is saying a lot coming from someone who doesn't love kale!!
Brussels Sprouts, Broccoli Slaw and Kale Salad
For the dressing:
- 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- pinch of salt
- ½ teaspoon dried mustard
- 1 teaspoon minced shallot
- 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
For the salad:
- 4 cups kale leaves
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ cup sliced strawberries
- ½ cup broccoli slaw mix
- ½ cup shaved brussels sprouts
- ⅓ cup crumbled goat cheese
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup roasted pumpkin seeds
For the dressing
- Whisk the vinegar and sugar together in a small bowl. Add salt, mustard, shallots and poppy seeds; whisk until combined. Slowly whisk in the olive oil.
For the salad
- Place the kale leaves in a large bowl. Mix avocado oil and sea salt together and pour over the kale. Massage the kale with a kneading motion, like you are kneading bread, tearing the leaves into smaller pieces, for 2-4 minutes until the kale turns bright green and begins to soften.
- Once the kale is softened, divide between two large salad bowls. Top with strawberries, broccoli slaw, shaved brussels spouts, goat cheese, dried cranberries and pumpkin seeds. Top with dressing and toss to coat. Serve immediately.