Kale is one of the healthiest vegetables on the planet. It’s often overlooked. Here’s one way to prep kale quickly, easily, and in a delicious way with this Simple Kale Salad recipe. The ginger dressing is to die for!
I love super elaborate salads with plenty of ingredients. Sometimes though all we crave is something quick and easy. This Simple Kale Salad hits the spot if you ask me. Just 3 main ingredients and the secret is really in the dressing. Isn’t the secret always in homemade salad dressings?
This salad’s dressing has ginger in it and let me tell you, it’s simply marvelous!
Ingredients & Substitutions
Kale – Curly kale or Dinosaur kale both work for this salad but my personal favorite is curly kale.
Red cabbage – honestly, this is optional. I love the color contrast but from a taste and texture perspective, the kale alone is ok, too.
Apple – don’t leave out the apple! It’s an absolute must. Gala or Honey Crisp are my favorites for the simple kale salad.
Olive Oil – use a mild-tasting extra virgin olive oil or alternatively a flavorless oil such as avocado oil or grapeseed oil.
Apple Cider Vinegar – if you don’t have apple cider vinegar and don’t want to go out and buy any I recommend a citrusy acid such as lime juice or lemon juice. I do recommend going out and buying apple cider vinegar though because it really does make a difference what kind of acidity you add to a delicious homemade salad dressing.
Dijon Mustard – not all mustards are the same. Yellow mustard will not work as well in this recipe. Dijon is nice and mild. Don’t switch this one out.
Sweetener – a good homemade dressing almost always has some sort of sweetener to balance out the acidity. For this ginger dressing, I recommend either honey or maple syrup.
Fresh Ginger – in a pinch you can use dried and ground ginger but fresh gives a totally different kick.
Sea salt & pepper – obviously. Ha!
Tips & Tricks On How To Make The Best Simple Kale Salad
How To Wash Kale
The easiest way to wash, especially curly kale with all its nooks and crannies is AFTER removing the stems. Add into the colander of your salad spinner and let the water run over it while moving it around with your hands so the running water can reach every piece.
Spin-dry Kale And Cabbage After Washing
Take your time to either spin-dry the washed kale and cabbage or use a clean kitchen towel to pat it dry.
The more water is left on your vegetables the more it will water down your dressing.
How To Make Kale Less Bitter?
Massage the kale! Yes, you read that right. Massaging the dressing into the kale makes it really stick to each piece. Otherwise, the dressing will just slip off and drip to the bottom of your salad bowl. Take your clean hands and really press the dressing into the leaves with your hand and fingers.
Frequently Asked Questions
No! That’s the beauty of kale. You can prep this simple kale salad up to an hour before serving it and it will still be crunchy and delicious. After several hours it becomes a bit softer but never really soggy.
100%. I do recommend really massaging the leaves with the dressing and adding the dressing at least 10 minutes before serving to make it less bitter and more delicious. No need to cook it at all though.
Kale is so versatile it goes with literally anything. Choose your favorite main dish and then serve this simple kale salad as a side dish.
Weight loss cannot be achieved with a one-food, or one-meal approach. You have to consider everything you eat in a whole day and a whole week. To learn more check out my 21-Day Clean Eating Challenge.
More Creative Ways To Add Kale To Your Diet
This simple kale salad is just one way to add kale to your diet. I have plenty of other recipes you might enjoy:
- Add it at the end into this delicious Instant Pot Vegetable Soup.
- Use kale to give your leftover rice a little umpf.
- Mix it into stuffing to make delicious Stuffed Spaghetti Squash.
Simple Kale Salad
- 1 bunch kale
- 2 cups sliced red cabbage
- 1 honeycrisp apple
- 1 inch fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated
- 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1.5 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1.5 Tbsp honey
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- sea salt
- Prepare the dressing by adding finely grated fresh ginger, mustard, apple cider vinegar, honey, olive oil, and sea salt and pepper to taste to a sealable jar and shake to combine.
- Destem the kale and cut it into fine stripes. Then wash and spin dry.
- Finely slice red cabbage. Then wash and spin dry.
- Add kale and cabbage to a large salad bowl and pour dressing over it, then use your clean hands to massage the dressing into the leaves. Tossing with spoons won't do the trick. Really massage the leaves in between your fingers.
- Core the apple and cut it into thin strips and add it to the rest of the salad and give it one last mix.