Kale Salad – A Raw Food Recipe

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Make no doubt about it, kale is a superfood. It is nutrient rich and loaded with antioxidants, protein, vitamins, minerals, and enzymes – especially when eaten raw. Today I’ll show you how to make a delicious kale salad, share a video tutorial, and explain a bit about how we were turned onto kale and why we choose it over lettuce.

Kale salad recipe

Start with the kale; we use organically-grown kale since it’s on the Dirty Dozen list. (Read more here about the Dirty Dozen.) Never be afraid to tweak this recipe to your liking, omitting and adding to your heart’s content.



Watch the video below for a visual demonstration on preparing the kale.  Drizzle olive oil over kale and massage for 30-60 seconds. (This is the fun part – playing with your food.) Add all other ingredients, toss to mix, and serve.

Unlike lettuce salads, this kale salad will keep for a few days without getting soggy. If you would like to save some for later be sure to add croutons individually to each serving rather than tossing them into the entire salad. This way you avoid soggy croutons.

Kale salad video presentation

(If you are unable to see the video in your email click here to view it on the web.)

Why kale, why not lettuce?

As mentioned above kale is a superfood that packs a super healthy punch. Lettuce? Not so much. I mean don’t get me wrong it’s good for you, but kale is like lettuce on organic steroids. Plus, is doesn’t get soggy after an hour or so like lettuce, it is MUCH heartier.

Betsy and I were introduced to kale via our CSA memberships. We started getting a bunch of kale every week and had no idea how to prepare it. The first year we let a lot of it go bad because we were new to the whole game. The second year we tried canning it and throwing it into stir fry but were still too fearful or unwilling to try it raw. By our third year CSA we were ready to commit to using every bit of produce received, no matter how unfamiliar – and we did. That was the year we embraced kale for the lovely nutritional dynamo it is.

Try this recipe or simply use it as motivation to be more bold in your culinary endeavors. Grow an unfamiliar vegetable in your garden this year. Make something you’ve never made before. Eat something you’ve never eaten before. If you don’t try it now, will you ever?

Expand your horizons! Learn to enjoy kale along with so many other healthy foods you’ve completely ignored up until now.


About Matt Jabs

Matt loves to inspire others to save money and live more sustainably. He is passionate about eating local, living simply, and doing more things himself. Connect with him on Facebook and Twitter.

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  1. Anne says

    I believe kale might be less bitter it you just use the leaves and not the thick stems. I love my juicer in the summer and often I throw Kale into the mix. I just finished making a juice with beets, carrots, sweet pepper, kale, endives and garlic it was very tasty . I have never put it in a smoothie though, will have to try that.
    I will definitely try this salad

  2. erin says

    It drives me crazy to see Kale used just as the “decoration” for salad bars around here! I actually grab it and put it in my salad! Thanks for the tip on massaging the Kale, I’ll have to try that! I love the Kale in smoothies- I think that it blends much better if you are blending it with Frozen Fruit…also try stir frying with lime juice (I freeze in ice cube trays) and garlic with a little coconut oil, YUMMMMMMMM! Thanks!

  3. Terry Oliver says

    Thanks! Cant wait to try this out! I usually wilt mine in a pan and cook it up with garlic, etc, or chop-steam-freeze for later. I am tired of throwing away lettuce-gone-bad. Perhaps this recipe will shake up the routine!

  4. Nigel says

    I might give it one more try. No matter how I prepare it, something about the taste of kale literally makes me feel ill. Other greens no problem, but kale has a certain kind of deep bitterness that just doesn’t agree with me. I’m curious to know if others have this problem with kale.

  5. Jenni says

    Agree about the Kale Chips being yummy – they are about the only way that I can actually eat kale (besides smoothies). Can’t wait to see your recipe!

  6. Mom says

    I am really glad you demonstrated the technique of “massaging” the kale. I was a little baffled about how one would massage a leaf. 🙂 I have massaged many tough muscles in my time with olive, peanut or almond oil, but never a veggie! Thanks Matt for another great recipe!

    • Matt Jabs says

      LOL, I was also confused the first time someone told me to “massage” the kale so I figured the video was in order – glad it was useful mom! 🙂

    • Matt Jabs says

      It stands for “Community Supported Agriculture” and is basically a program local farmers run to sell packages of produce to area residents. Find your local CSA by visiting LocalHarvest.org

  7. Deaf258 says

    Of all the varieties of kale I have tried, I love lacinato kale the most! It’s too bad it is not common here in Phoenix. When I lived in Baltimore for under 2 years, lacinato kale was common in the produce stores. I came up with a recipe and would like to share with you guys. I drink this for breakfast or snack!


  8. Vicki says

    We love kale in smoothies! Blend it really well. Favorite: almond milk or water, frozen mango, bananas, pineapple’s and a good bunch of kale–YUM!
    It’s not raw but I hear kale crisps are yummy too.

    • Matt Jabs says

      Kale crisps/chips are yummy Vicki, we’ll be publishing a recipe for it soon too. 🙂 We also use kale, and many other greens, in our morning smoothies – good stuff!

  9. Nina Nelson says

    You had me at feta cheese :). I’ll have to try this. I’ve only tried kale in a homemade Zuppa Toscana soup. And my husband put it into a smoothie for me once after I had our last baby. It wasn’t the best blender…I was a little turned off to kale for a while. Oooh, I might have to add in some honey-glazed walnuts.

    • Matt Jabs says

      Do it Nina, those walnuts sound good! Kale can turn people off pretty easy, it’s a bit of a red-headed step-child of greens but deserves a second look at it’s internal beauty and goodness. 🙂