At the risk of being redundant with posting recipes that include Kale I urge you to remember that Kale has so many good qualities, therefore making it such a versatile green to eat up! It is easy to grow also and looks great as a landscape plant or just growing in your garden.
This salad came together one day when I was obviously really hungry. If I remember correctly I had gone for a run, had a smoothie, but then did some power cleaning. Of course the whole time I was cleaning I was thinking of what I could make for dinner with what I had on hand. I usually do have Kale or Spinach in the fridge so that was the beginning of a wonderful thing. The first version of this was a little simpler, but then house church night came along and I was challenged to bring a main dish, it’s what I signed up for. I thought of the Kale salad that I had so enjoyed a couple of nights before and if I added a few other things this little green goodness just might be elevated to main dish status for carnivores and for sure plant-based foodies!
The major players in this salad are Kale, quinoa, black beans and a sprinkling of pumpkin seeds. As always there could be so many variations with this salad. Here are some benefits to why you might want to try this combo together.
Five nutritional reasons to make this salad:
1. Kale is a super food, rich with vitamin A, K and C.
2. One cup of kale contains 36 calories, 5 grams of fiber, and 15% of the daily requirement of calcium and vitamin B6.
3. 1 cup of cooked quinoa (185 g) contains 8.14 grams of protein.
4. One cup of black beans also provides 20 percent of the daily value, or general recommended amount for adults, for iron and 5 percent of the daily value for calcium.
5. Pumpkin seeds are high in zinc, making them a natural protector against osteoporosis.
Okay, so I may have snagged you with a little on the nutritional front, but then again what does this salad taste like, because after all that is how I am going to get you to eat it! It is yummo! The creaminess of the avocado softens the kale to make it into only a slightly crunchy salad. The blend of spices gives it just enough smokiness and kick that you want to go back for another bite. The peppers offer up a sweetness to blend well with the lime flavor. One person who had it at a party yesterday described it as a Mexican flavor profile. I have served this up twice now at two different venues and have only had positive feedback, so I felt safe sharing an original although I know there is probably a version of this out there somewhere in cyber recipe land, you are just privileged to get my spin 🙂
Protein Packed Kale Avocado Salad
1 Bunch Kale torn into bit sized pieces
½ Red pepper chopped
½ Yellow pepper chopped
½ Cup Spinach (optional)
¼ Cup Cilantro chopped
½ Cup red onion chopped
1 Chopped Avocado
Juice of 1 lime
1 teas. Cumin
½ teas. Salt
¼ teas. Cayenne (less if you don’t like heat)
1 teas agave (can use honey)
1 teas. African Smoke (from Trader Joes, you can use liquid smoke or omit)
1 Can black beans rinsed or 1-½ Cup cooked black beans
1 Cup cooked quinoa
2 TBS. toasted pumpkin seeds
1. Toss all the greens, onion, and pepper in large bowl
2. Mix up spices, juice from lime and pour over greens.
3. Time to play with your food, throw on the avocado and use your hands to massage the kale into the greens. Yes, a little messy but it gets the avocado onto the greens the best.
4. Toss the beans and quinoa into the salad.
5. Let the salad marinate for a couple hours for best flavor mix.
6. Sprinkle on the pumpkin seeds before serving.
NOTES: This salad can really be adapted to your taste and time. If you don’t have the variety of peppers, use what you have, I just liked the colors. This is good without the beans and quinoa; they just take the salad to another level adding more protein and a balanced nutritional dinner.
I am off to pack my lunch, and yes I snagged just enough leftover salad to enjoy this salad today! By the way it only gets better the next day 🙂
“Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul”