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This gorgeous kale salad is a refreshing side dish or main dinner salad packed with greens and sweet fruit.

salad on a plate with oranges, kale cilantro, red cabbage, pumpkin seeds

Salad lover? If so be sure to look through my salad recipes that are vibrant and easy-to-make salads! For another pretty on-the-plate salad, try my Rainbow Cauliflower Salad, my family’s favorite Authentic Mexican Cabbage Slaw Recipe with a Zesty Dressing, a hearty Quick Mexican Brown Rice Salad & Dressing, and the delicious Bread Salad. These salads are not only a treat for the taste buds but also a celebration of wholesome ingredients that will leave you feeling nourished and satisfied!

A Beautiful Kale Salad Everyone Will Enjoy!

  • Easy to Make: This salad is a breeze to prepare, and it’s so pretty that it pleases all your senses—your eyes, smell, and taste.
  • Bursting with Color: The vibrant array of fresh veggies, succulent fruits, and crunchy seeds creates a feast for the eyes and a celebration of natural flavors.
  • Versatile: The recipe is flexible, allowing you to add your favorite fresh produce or seeds to make it your own.
  • Perfect for Meal Prep: This salad stores well, making it a fantastic option for meal prepping or bringing to gatherings.

Ingredients For The Salad

kale salad recipe on a plate with each ingredient next to the plate.
  • Leafy Vegetables: Kale and red cabbage
  • Yellow Bell Peppers: I like to use yellow peppers; however, red, green, or orange would also be a great option.
  • Cilantro: Be sure to only use fresh not dried cilantro. Use the stems and leaves. 
  • Fruit: Green apples are a good choice. The tartness pairs well with the honey almond dressing. Your favorite variety of oranges adds more sweetness. 
  • Seeds: Pumpkin, sunflower, and pomegranate

📝 Note: You can find the full recipe with ingredients and measurements in the recipe card located at the bottom of this post.

 Best Type of Kale for Raw Kale Salads

The two best types of kale for a raw salad are Lacinato kale (also known as Dinosaur kale) and Curly kale. Both are tender and flavorful, making them ideal for raw salads.

Simple Instructions For Kale Salad

This kale salad is a breeze to prepare and so visually appealing that it pleases all your senses. 

Preparing Kale For Raw Salad

  1.  First, fill a large bowl with cold water and submerge the kale leaves. Gently swish the leaves around to loosen any dirt or debris. After that, remove the leaves from the water and give them a good shake to get rid of excess moisture. Pat the leaves dry with kitchen towels. You could also dry the leaves using a salad spinner if you have one. 
  2.  Next, using a sharp knife or scissors, trim the large stem or vein away from the leaf to prepare the kale for the salad. This ensures that the kale is tender and enjoyable to eat in your salad.
stems of kale cut from the leaves

How Do You Make Raw Kale Tender?

  1. After washing and trimming the kale, you can make the raw kale tender for your salad by massaging it. Place the kale in a large bowl, drizzle with a little olive oil, sprinkle on a dash of salt, and then, using clean hands, massage the kale with the oil for a couple of minutes. This helps to break down the tough fibers in the kale, making it softer, a bit sweeter, and easier to digest.
  1. Slice the red cabbage into thin ribbons about 3 inches long.
  2. Wash and chop the cilantro. Be sure to use the stems and the leaves. 
  3. Remove the yellow pepper core and seeds. Dice into small bite-size pieces. 
  4. Peel the orange and dice it into small pieces. 
  5. Core and dice the apple. 
  6. Remove seeds from the pomegranate fruit.

The Easiest Way to Prepare Pomegranate Seeds

To remove the seeds from a pomegranate, start by cutting the fruit peel in quarters. Then, hold each quarter over a bowl and gently tap the back of the fruit. Some seeds will fall out into the bowl, and the rest you can easily separate them from the membrane. This method helps to extract the seeds without making a mess.

steps to quarter and peel a pomegranate using a knife and your hands
  1. Place all the fruits and vegetables in a large bowl. 
  2. Sprinkle in pomegranate, shelled sunflower, and shelled pumpkin seeds.

Kale Salad Dressing Ingredients

  • Oil: I suggest using cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
  •  Lemon juice: Only use freshly squeezed, not the kind in a bottle.
  • Almond butter: Avoid adding the separated oil, and be sure it is at room temperature. 
  • Sweetener: I like to use honey; however, you could substitute it for maple syrup.
  • Ginger: It’s important for the best taste to use freshly peeled and finely grated ginger. Do not use crystallized or powdered ginger.
  • Salt: Optional if you are watching your salt intake.

Preparing Kale Salad Dressing

  1. In a small jar with a tight-fitting lid, mix together the olive oil, lemon juice, almond butter, grated ginger, honey, and salt. Place a lid on the jar and shake well until the dressing is smooth and creamy.
  2. Toss the dressing over your salad ingredients and serve.
salad on a plate with oranges, kale cilantro, red cabbage, pumpkin seeds, bowl of yellow peppers by it

Yummy Kale Salad Optional Add-Ins

This recipe is flexible enough to add in some of your favorite fresh produce or seeds.

  • Onions: Green onions or red onions. 
  • Nuts: Sliced almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts, or pistachios. 
  • Veggies:  Shaved Brussels Sprouts, chickpeas, avocado slices 
  • Sweetness: For a little more sweetness, toss in some organic raisins or dried cranberries.
  • Protein: Add Thai grilled chicken, salmon, or grilled shrimp to make it a main dish. 
  • Fruit:  A pear or any other variety of apples would be a good add-in. 
  • Dairy: Sprinkle in some feta, blue cheese crumbles or shredded parmesan cheese

How to Store Leftover Kale Salad

To store kale salad, place it in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 2-3 days. However, it’s best to add the dressing just before serving to maintain the salad’s freshness and crunchiness. Note* This salad does not freeze well.

Make It A Meal

You can serve this kale salad as a refreshing side dish alongside Spicy Thai Grilled Chicken or Lemon Butter Tilapia or as a light lunch option. It also pairs well with one of my hearty soup recipes, such as Vegetable Chowder or Copycat Panera 10 Vegetable Soup, for a balanced meal.

I Want To Answer Your Questions & Hear Your Comments

Do you have a question about this recipe❓ I will answer in the comment form below👇🏼 the recipe card. Did you make this recipe? If so, could you be a gem and leave a comment and rating ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ below? This helps others find yummy 😋 recipes to make for their family and friends.

gina in the kitchen cooking and image of dishes made by intentional hospitality
salad on a white plate with two fork by it
5 from 1 rating

Gorgeous Nutty Kale Salad With Honey Almond Dressing

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 6
This easy-to-make Kale Salad is bursting with fresh, colorful veggies, fruit, and crunchy seeds, then drizzled with homemade sweet honey and almond butter dressing.

Note: Be sure to read through the recipe’s post for tips and details about this recipe.

Ingredients
 

Salad Mix

  • 4 cups kale , thinly sliced kale, no stems and loosely packed in the cup
  • 4 cups red cabbage, very thinly 3inch long ribbons sliced and loosely packed in the cup
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped stems and leaves into small pieces, loosely packed. *hint I like to bunch my cilantro all together and cut with scissors.
  • 1 cup yellow pepper, remove core and dice into small pieces *Note: you could also add red, orange, and green peppers too if you prefer.
  • 1 cup green apple , one medium, remove core and slice thinly or cubed
  • 1 orange , peel, seeded and diced into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, shelled
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, shelled

Salad Dressing

  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons lemon juice, only use freshly squeezed, not the kind in a bottle
  • 2 tablespoon almond butter, room temperature, avoid adding any seperated oil.
  • 3 tablespoons honey, can substitue with maple syrup
  • 1 inch ginger , Peeled and finely grated. *only use fresh ginger, not powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions
 

Salad Mix

  • Fill a large bowl with cold water and submerge the kale leaves. Gently swish the leaves around to loosen any dirt or debris. After that, remove the leaves from the water and give them a good shake to get rid of excess moisture. Pat the leaves dry with kitchen towels. You could also dry the leaves using a salad spinner if you have one.
    4 cups kale
  • Next, using a sharp knife or scissors, trim the large stem or vein away from the leaf to prepare the kale for the salad. This ensures that the kale is tender and enjoyable to eat in your salad.
  • After washing and trimming the kale, you can make the raw kale tender for your salad by massaging it. Place the kale in a large bowl, drizzle with a little olive oil, sprinkle on a dash of salt, and then, using clean hands, massage the kale with the oil for a couple of minutes. This helps to break down the tough fibers in the kale, making it softer, a bit sweeter, and easier to digest.
  • Slice the red cabbage into thin ribbons about 3 inches long.
    4 cups red cabbage
  • Wash and chop the cilantro. Be sure to use the stems and the leaves.
    1/4 cup cilantro
  • Remove the yellow pepper core and seeds. Dice into small bite-size pieces.
    1 cup yellow pepper
  • Peel the orange and dice it into small pieces.
    1 orange
  • Core and dice the apple.
    1 cup green apple
  • Remove seeds from the pomegranate fruit.
    1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
  • Place all the fruits and vegetables in a large bowl. Sprinkle in pomegranate, shelled sunflower, and shelled pumpkin seeds.
    1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, 1/4 cup sunflower seeds

Kale Salad Dressing

  • In a small jar with a tight-fitting lid, mix together the salad dressing ingredients. Place a lid on the jar and shake well until the dressing is smooth and creamy.
    6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Toss the dressing over your salad ingredients and serve.
    4 tablespoons lemon juice, 2 tablespoon almond butter, 3 tablespoons honey, 1 inch ginger, ½ teaspoon salt

Notes

Optional Add-Ins
This recipe is flexible enough to add in some of your favorite fresh produce or seeds.
  • Onions: Green onions or red onions. 
  • Nuts: Sliced almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts, or pistachios. 
  • Veggies:  Shaved Brussels Sprouts, chickpeas, avocado slices 
  • Sweetness: For a little more sweetness, toss in some organic raisins or dried cranberries.
  • Protein: Add Thai grilled chicken, salmon, or grilled shrimp to make it a main dish. 
  • Fruit:  A pear or any other variety of apples would be a good add-in. 
  • Dairy: Sprinkle in some feta, blue cheese crumbles or shredded parmesan cheese
How to Store Leftover Kale Salad
To store kale salad, place it in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 2-3 days. However, it’s best to add the dressing just before serving to maintain the salad’s freshness and crunchiness. Note* This salad does not freeze well.
Serving: 1g, Calories: 312kcal, Carbohydrates: 28g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 22g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 13g, Trans Fat: 0.002g, Sodium: 237mg, Potassium: 568mg, Fiber: 6g, Sugar: 18g, Vitamin A: 5283IU, Vitamin C: 139mg, Calcium: 180mg, Iron: 2mg
Cuisine: American
Course: Salad
Author: Gina Dickson

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