This kale salad with apples and creamy tahini dressing is healthy, hearty and vegan. It’s tangy from the lemon in the dressing and can be eaten as a side dish or as a main course with grilled chicken, baked shrimp or roasted veggies.
We’re in that weird in-between this time of year.
It’s technically still summer but somehow pumpkin spice everything is out in the world?
Call me a weirdie but pumpkin spice shouldn’t show it’s frothy face until November.
This kale apple salad fits perfectly in the in between though.
Bright summery salad.
Fall’s staple, the glorious apple, singing loudly.
How to make kale taste AMAZING!
Tim is a definite kale skeptic. It’s not that he’s never had good kale but sometimes the preparation is really hit or miss.
Like why should he eat food that you need to coax into tasting good?
But I counter that question with another: Does unseasoned steak that’s been boiled and dropped on a plate taste good? That’s a big, fat NO.
Kale is no exception. It needs to be treated with some love!
The secret to perfect kale lies in the massage. Whether you’re making kale salad or crispy kale like in this curry shrimp recipe you need to:
- Be sure to remove the tough, stalk-like stem in each leaf of kale
- Massage the salad dressing, into your chopped up kale. You literally have to rub all of the pieces together so that they’re fully soaked in, kind of like applying lotion to your skin. If you don’t rub the dressing into the kale it will be too dry and tough to choke down.
- Remember kale is in the cabbage family, therefore it’s thicker than lettuce and can withstand heat
- Let the dressed kale salad sit for a bit (at least 10 minutes) so that the dressing can soak in
How to make the creamy salad dressing
For this kale apple salad, the dressing is super rich and creamy yet uses no actual cream.
Is it some sort of kitchen magic wizardry?
Instead of traditional ingredients used to thicken ranch dressing like buttermilk or sour cream, this dressing gets its creamy factor from tahini.
Tahini is a sesame seed paste traditionally used in Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and Northern African dishes.
On its own, it has a very strong nutty flavor, but with lemon and garlic, it’s just balanced enough not to overpower your kale apple salad.
Make this kale salad a main course
Kale is one of the heartiest and healthiest dark leafy greens out there.
It’s good for you for all types of reasons but it’s also extremely filling.
You can definitely eat a heaping portion of this kale apple salad on its own as a dinner. But if you want to give it even more volume top it with:
- Grilled or baked chicken
- Roasted vegetables (squash or cauliflower work great)
- Grilled, fried or baked tofu
- Baked shrimp or salmon
Kale Apple Salad with Creamy Tahini DressingRate this Recipe:
- 3 cups kale, stems removed and roughly chopped
- 1 1/2 apples, seeded and sliced into matchsticks I recommend pink lady apples if you can find them
- 1/2 jalapeño, chopped and seeds removed
- 2 tbs tahini (sesame seed paste)
- 1 lemon, juice only
- 1 tbs fresh parsley
- 1 tsp sunflower oil or another light oil like avocado oil You can use olive oil as well
- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped or grated
- 6 tbs water
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- Use a knife to remove the stems from kale leaves and roughly chop; you could also rip the kale with your hands. Add the chopped kale, sliced apples and jalapeño to a large bowl.
- Add all of the tahini dressing ingredients to a separate bowl. Whisk until all ingredients are evenly combined into a dressing consistency.
- Pour the dressing all over kale and apples. Toss with your hands using your fingers to massage some of the dressing into the kale. Make sure the kale is evenly coated in dressing before serving. Enjoy!
- When making dressing for a hearty green like kale or cabbage, you want to make sure the dressing is slightly salty when you taste it. Once it coats the kale it will balance out.
Did you try this recipe? I’d love to see how it turned out! Snap a picture and tag @brightrootskitchen or use #brightrootskitchen on Insta.