Kale is the perfect recipe ingredient for a crunchy winter salad. Wait, did we say crunchy? Yup, this dish is full of texture! Our salad mixes leafy kale with crisp apple, popping pomegranate, and ruby-red blood orange. It’s fresh, tart, and sweet – the perfect side for a hearty winter meal. What’s more, it has a red and green color combination that’s perfect for the festive season.
Looks, Texture and Flavor!
This salad may be simple, but it’s full of wonderful ingredients. All of these fruits and vegetables are at their peak during winter – so get them when they’re fresh!
Kale: when it comes to healthy foods, kale is as nutritious as it gets! Indeed, this leafy green has loads of vitamins (A, B5, B6, folate, C and K), minerals (manganese and many more), and an impressive array of other nutrients. Therefore, kale is an excellent base for a salad recipe.
Apple: apples are a sweet way to add some crunch to a kale salad. We prefer fuji apples because their sweetness balances the tart orange and pomegranate. Of course, any sugary apple will do – feel free to mix it up.
Blood orange: everyone knows oranges have plenty of vitamin C. But blood oranges are unique. Their deep red color adds visual appeal, and their flavor has a hint of raspberry. They also create a festive red and green color combination when tossed through kale.
Pomegranate: this ingredient adds some fun! Pomegranate seeds are like little jewels that pop when you bite them. They are both sweet and tart, bringing a refreshing element to the dish.
How to Prepare Kale
When using kale in a salad recipe, it’s important to help it relax. By that, we mean you need to give it a massage! Raw kale is very fibrous, and if you don’t break those fibers down, it’ll be tough. Here are some tips on how to prepare it:
- Firstly, remove the woody stems. You can do this neatly by cutting the leaves away with a knife. Alternatively, you can tear the leaves off by running your fingers along the sides of the stalk.
- Chop the kale roughly, leaving it in big leafy pieces. Then, drizzle half the dressing over the kale and start the massage. The trick is to massage the leaves between your fingers until they are slightly wilted. Test the texture by taking a bite – the kale should be chewable, but still a little crispy.
Tip: try not to overwork the kale, because you’ll go past tender and end up making it mushy. Also, you don’t need to massage if you’re using baby kale, it’s already soft.
Assemble the Salad
To finish the salad:
- Slice the apple into thin, bite-sized pieces.
- Cut the blood orange into slices or segments.
- And pop the seeds out of the pomegranate.
Then, toss the fruit through the kale with the rest of the dressing, transfer to a serving bowl and serve right away. This salad is best when everything is fresh and crisp. If you let it sit in the dressing for too long, you’ll create a soggy mess.
That’s all there is to it! Enjoy your kale salad with a vegan roast, a serve of whole grains, or your favorite plant-based protein recipe.
We hope you enjoy this bright and refreshing Kale Salad Recipe. If you try it, please let us know what you think with a comment and rating. Every bit of feedback helps make The Plant Riot even better.Print
This beautiful winter salad recipe has the goodness of kale, apple, blood orange, and pomegranate. A perfect combination of leafy, crunchy, tart + sweet!
- 6 cups curly or dino kale (1 large bunch), woody stems removed and roughly chopped leaving some big leafy pieces (see note)
- 2 blood oranges, thinly sliced
- 1 apple, thinly sliced (we prefer Fuji)
- 1 pomegranate, arils removed
- Make kale salad dressing by whisking together dressing ingredients in a small bowl (or place in a mason jar, seal, and shake to combine!).
- Place roughly chopped kale into a large bowl, drizzle half of the salad dressing over the kale. Massage the leaves between your fingers until then are slightly wilted, about 2-3 minutes. Be careful not to overwork the kale, because you’ll go past tender and end up making it mushy.
- Add the apple and blood orange slices, pomegranate arils, and remaining salad dressing. Toss to mix the ingredients.
- Transfer the salad to a serving bowl and serve immediately (see notes, if you’re not serving immediately). Enjoy!
- If you’d prefer not to use curly or dino kale, you can use baby kale. Baby kale is more tender and does not require massaging. So if you use baby kale, make sure you skip the massaging step!
- If you’d like to prepare this salad ahead of time, we recommend preparing the dressing, slicing the blood oranges and removing the seeds from the pomegranate. Set aside until it’s time to prepare the salad. A few minutes before saving the kale salad, massage the kale, slice the apple, and finish making the salad.
Keywords: kale salad recipe, kale salad with apples, The Plant Riot
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