This hearty massaged kale salad is made with sweet apples and crunchy walnuts. Great for making ahead and packing in lunches!
The secret to not getting stuck in a salad rut is to use seasonal ingredients as much as possible! Picked at the height of freshness, fruits and veggies always taste best when they’re in season.
With fall quickly approaching, I wanted to share one of my favorite massaged kale salad recipes. While I frequently make my Kale Caesar salad, I decided to change things up by adding toasted walnuts and juicy apples.
The secret to the walnuts is to lightly toast them in the pan before chopping into bite-sized pieces. Just a minute or two in a warm pan causes the walnuts to become lightly toasted and nutty in flavor. You’ll be amazed how much toasting brings out the flavor of a humble walnut!
The other secret to a good kale salad is to massage the kale with olive oil, lemon and salt using your hands. This massaging helps breakdown and tenderize the kale, an otherwise bitter and hard-to-eat veggie.
If you don’t have lemon juice on hand you can always use your favorite vinegar. Any form of acid will help break down the kale and tenderize it.
Before serving, I sprinkle in the apples and feta. The apples add more crunchy texture and a delicious sweetness to balance off the lemon. The feta is creamy and tangy, the ultimate balance to the toasted walnuts and sweet apples.
Your fork is waiting.
Kale Salad with Apples and Walnuts
- 1 bunch lacinato kale (or other type of kale, stem removed and finely chopped)
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- salt and pepper (taste)
- ¼ cup walnuts (toasted and chopped)
- 1 apple (cored and diced)
- ¼ cup feta cheese (crumbled)
- Add kale to a medium bowl along with olive oil, lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Using your hands, gently massage the kale for about 60 seconds, helping it tenderize.
- In a small pan, heat the walnuts over medium-low heat. Stir until toasted and slightly browned, about 2-3 minutes. You'll know they're toasted when you can smell them. Remove walnuts from pan and finely chop.
- Add toasted, chopped walnuts to the bowl along with apple and feta. Toss well and add more salt and pepper to taste if needed.
Want more delicious salad recipes? Check out my Pinterest board!