Loaded Kale Salad
This fresh kale salad is loaded with quinoa, apples, sweet potatoes, feta cheese and walnuts, all tossed together in a homemade dressing.
I am so excited to share this kale salad with you today! I actually started making this salad last spring, but it seemed like more of a fall salad so I was saving it to share with you in the fall. Then of course life got busy, the blog got put on the back burner, and here we are at the tail end of fall and I’m finally putting this recipe on the blog. I hope you’ll forgive me because this salad is so good!
I love making a big batch of this kale salad and eating it for lunch for a few days. It is a great make-ahead salad and actually gets better if it sits for at least a few hours before you eat it. It makes a great lunch or side dish for dinner and it’s chock full of healthy ingredients.
As the name suggests, this truly is a “loaded” kale salad. The kale is tossed with a simple vinaigrette and then topped with tons of good-for-you toppings. I absolutely love the combination of quinoa, roasted sweet potatoes and feta. And the craisins, chopped apple and nuts add the perfect amount of texture and crunch! The end result is a delicious salad that I can’t seem to stop eating. Of course, as with most salad recipes, you are free to mix up the ingredients according to what you like or what you have on hand! The base of this recipe is delicious, so feel free to play around with different toppings and mix-ins.
It certainly doesn’t hurt that kale is incredibly good for you, and I’m always trying new ways to get my kids to eat different vegetables. In all honesty 2 kids happily eat this salad and 2 refuse to eat it, but that’s better than nothing right? 🙂 I plan to make this recipe all winter to load up on fresh veggies, and I hope you try it and like it as much as we do. 🙂
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 c. red wine vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)
- 2 T. dijon mustard
- 2 T. honey
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 small/medium sweet potatoes
- 1 Tbsp canola oil
- 6 c. chopped kale leaves (cut off thick ribs and wash thoroughly)
- 1/2 c. cooked quinoa, cooked according to package directions
- 1 apple; diced
- 2 green onions; sliced
- 1/2 cup craisins
- 1/2 cup feta cheese; crumbled
- 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
- 1/4 cup walnuts or pecans, chopped
- Make the dressing: Combine all ingredient for the dressing into a container with tight-fitting lid. Shake to combine, or mix well. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 375. Peel and dice sweet potato. Mix with 1 Tbsp canola oil, spread on a baking sheet and roast for 30-35 minutes, or until soft. Let cool.
- Wash, dry, and chop kale, place into a large bowl.
- Pour half the dressing over kale and mix well.
- Stir in cooled sweet potatoes, cooked quinoa, apple, green onion, dried fruit, sunflower seeds, nuts and any other mix-ins you’d like.
- Add more dressing to taste and mix well. Refrigerate until ready to serve.