I didn’t get serious about kale until my senior year of college.
I would dabble in it every once and a while or order it off the menu at a restaurant, but it wasn’t a staple in my day to day eating routine. It wasn’t until senior year of college when I learned about massaging kale on Robyn’s blog that I started to eat it on the regular.
Let me tell you guys – massaging kale is such a game changer. Massaging the leaves makes them much more tender, flavorful, and therefore much more delicious to eat raw.
Whenever I say I “massage” my kale, people give me weird crazy-person looks. It sounds totally strange, but I promise it is not weird or complicated in the slightest!
I wanted to share with you a recipe that is a staple in my lunch routine. I pack this salad base with various different toppings in 85% of my packed lunches – it’s that good!
The topping combos for this base are seemingly endless. It pairs well with everything – quinoa, raw or roasted veggies, golden raisins, cranberries, avocado, chickpeas, hardboiled eggs, sweet potato chunks… You name it.
Lately I have been loving the topping combo of chickpeas, avocado, sunflower seeds, and golden raisins. The four add the perfect trio of flavors and textures to kick your kale into overdrive.
When packing lunch for work, I always make my salads at night and leave them in the fridge to put in my lunchbox in the morning. By lunch time, the flavors have combined together even more, making it taste extra spectacular.
Whether you’re a seasoned kale eater, or just getting into the groove of the dark leafy green, I hope this helps you enjoy this kale salad as much as I do!
My Favorite Massaged Kale Salad
- 1/3 of a bag of kale or 3 kale leaves (stems removed)
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1-2 tbsp nutritional yeast (you can just use a sprinkle of sea salt instead if you are wary, but I promise nutritional yeast is delicious!)
- Optional: a sprinkle of sea salt
- Wash and dry your kale, then place it in a large bowl. Remove the leaves from the thick stems and discard the stems in the trash can. (You can technically leave these on and eat them, but I find the thick hard stems to be unenjoyable.)
- Once your kale is de-stemmed, break it up a few times with your hands into bite sized pieces.
- Drizzle the kale with the apple cider vinegar and olive oil.
- Now for the “scary” part – massage the oil and vinegar into the kale. Do this by gently rubbing the leaves with your hands and fingers until they are all coated. It only takes a minute and makes all the difference in the world!
- Next add your nutritional yeast and optional sea salt to the leaves and massage it in the same way you did the oil and vinegar. (If you are opting not to use nutritional yeast, just add a sprinkle of sea salt and toss the leaves to distribute.)
- Next, add your toppings. The more the merrier!
- Either serve immediately, or leave it in the fridge for a packed lunch the next day.