by Olena

Massaged Kale Salad with Winter Fruit

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Olena Osipov
5 from 4 votes

Massaged Kale Salad with pomegranate arils, orange slices and toasted slivered almonds all coated in the best scrumptious orange ginger dressing.

Love a sweet and savory kale salad? Why not try this kale blueberry salad, sweet kale salad,or cinnamon apple walnut kale salad, too?!

Massaged Kale Salad with Winter Fruit

Perfect Christmas Salad

If you have been looking for an easy and affordable winter salad, this massaged kale salad with winter fruit is IT. It is a nutrition powerhouse loaded with cruciferous greens, pomegranate, citrus, and toasted almonds.

And the dressing is light and freshly made with orange juice and lemony, peppery, spicy, slightly sweet but pungent fresh ginger root. Don’t try dried ginger, you won’t be even able to taste it. Has to be fresh or no ginger at all, which will do.

It is a perfect Christmas salad with all these colors. Just look at it.

For those who prefer something a little more savory, I have several kale salads suited to that, too – like this baby kale salad, garlic, lemon and parmesan kale salad, and even a Mexican kale salad!

Massaged Kale Salad with Winter Fruit in bowl with metal serving spoons

Do I Have to Massage Kale?

Yes. It is absolute opposite to what I tell you to do in lemon kale salad – don’t waste your time massaging. It is because lemon juice, Parmesan cheese and olive oil do a good job at breaking down the fibers in that kale salad.

Kale pomegranate salad needs massaging. To massage kale, drizzle it with 1 tbsp olive oil and 1/4 tsp salt. Literally give it a massage using your hands for about 2-3 minutes.

Tip: Add remaining ingredients after. You don’t want to be massaging fruit as well. 🙂

How to Make Massaged Kale Salad

  • Kale: For winter kale salad I prefer to use green curly kale as it is less bitter than Dinosaur kale. Also known as Lacinato kale, dinosaur kale has dark narrow leaves with bumps. Its leaves are quite soft, so if you use it, chances are no massage is required.
  • Pomegranate: I find cleaning pomegranate is the most cumbersome part of this winter kale salad. You can buy pomegranate arils but be prepared to pay for someone’s time. Or I find using this method is not that bad. Plus, pomegranate makes for a wonderful addition to salads, like this brussel sprout salad.
  • Citrus: I used mandarins and sliced them into rounds. You can also separate small mandarins into small segments. Any citrus fruit like oranges, clementines, cuties etc. will work. The key is to get them to small bite-size pieces as close as possible.
  • Almonds: Try toasting any nuts in a skillet and you will never eat them raw again. However, raw nuts are more nutritious, so roast them for a treat. I use slivered almonds but sliced or coarsely chopped whole work just as well. Hazelnuts, macadamia nuts or cashews will go well with kale.
  • Orange ginger dressing: Just 1/4 cup orange juice, 1 tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp freshly grated ginger, salt and pepper whisked in a bowl make this the best kale salad for today. 🙂

orange kale salad dressingpouring kale salad dressing over kale salad with pomegranates

How to Store and Make Ahead

Store: You can store salad leftovers for up to 36 hours without salad becoming soggy.

Make ahead: If you would like to make salad ahead, prepare kale leaves and store in a zip top bag for up to 7 days. I often prep kale like this for easy use throughout the week. If you buy chopped kale in bags, you might have to remove the ribs.

Then store toasted nuts in a dry place. Salad dressing can be made for up to 7 days in advance and refrigerated. Remove it from the fridge 30 minutes ahead of serving to allow olive oil to warm up.

What to Serve Kale Salad With?

This vegan kale salad is super crunchy and juicy from all that orange ginger dressing. It goes well with chicken, lamb, beef or meatballs. Serve with a meatloaf or a turkey breast roast.

You got massaged salt-ish kale, juicy pomegranates, sweet and fragrant citrus slices, toasted and crunchy almonds drowning in fresh orange juice based vinaigrette with a ginger kick. What not to like?!

I devoured 5 cups, like this whole bowl, by myself, in one day. I guess it’s one of those dishes that doesn’t need a calorie count. 🙂

More Healthy Salad Recipes

Or check out this list of 45 healthy salad recipes, for more salad inspo!

 

Massaged Kale Salad with mandarins and pomegranate served in a bowl with metal salad spoons

Massaged Kale Salad with Winter Fruit

Massaged Kale Salad with Winter Fruit

Massaged Kale Salad with pomegranate arils, orange slices and toasted slivered almonds all coated in the best scrumptious orange ginger dressing.
5 from 4 votes
Print Save Rate
Course: Salad
Cuisine: North American
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 190kcal
Author: Olena Osipov

Ingredients

For Salad:

  • 8 cups green curly kale packed, stems removed and chopped
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 large pomegranate arils only
  • 4 mandarins or 1 orange sliced
  • 1/2 cup almonds slivered, sliced or coarsely chopped

For Orange Ginger Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp fresh ginger grated
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Ground black pepper to taste

Instructions

  • In a large salad bowl, add kale, olive oil and salt.
  • Massage with your hands for 2-3 minutes until the amount of kale shrinks a bit.
  • Add pomegranate and orange slices. Set aside.
  • Toast nuts in a skillet on medium heat until fragrant, stirring often. Transfer to a bowl with salad.
  • In a small bowl, add orange juice, olive oil, ginger, salt, pepper and whisk with a fork.
  • Pour dressing over salad, toss gently and enjoy.

Store: You can store salad leftovers for up to 36 hours without salad becoming soggy.

    Make Ahead: If you would like to make salad ahead, prepare kale leaves and store in a zip top bag for up to 7 days. I often prep kale like this for easy use throughout the week. If you buy chopped kale in bags, you might have to remove the ribs.

      Then store toasted nuts in a dry place. Salad dressing can be made for up to 7 days in advance and refrigerated. Remove it from the fridge 30 minutes ahead of serving to allow olive oil to warm up.

        Notes

        • Don't try dried ginger, you won't be even able to taste it. Has to be fresh or no ginger at all, which will do.
        • I prefer to use green curly kale as it is less bitter than Dinosaur kale. Also known as Lacinato kale, dinosaur kale has dark narrow leaves with bumps. Its leaves are quite soft, so if you use it, chances are no massage is required.
        • You can buy pomegranate arils but be prepared to pay for someone's time. Or I find using this method is not that bad.
        • I used mandarins and sliced them into rounds. You can also separate small mandarins into small segments. Any citrus fruit like oranges, clementines, cuties etc. will work. The key is to get them to small bite size pieces as close as possible.
        • I use slivered almonds but sliced or coarsely chopped whole work just as well. Hazelnuts, macadamia nuts or cashews will go well with kale.

        Nutrition

        Serving: 1cup | Calories: 190kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 229mg | Potassium: 641mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 9345IU | Vitamin C: 128mg | Calcium: 187mg | Iron: 2mg
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        olena osipov in the studio

        Hello and welcome to iFOODreal.

        My name is Olena Osipov. I'm a mom to 2 boys, a wife to Alex and we reside on magical Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada. This is our healthy family recipes blog. Originally from Ukraine, I grew up on real food. As an adult, I struggled with diets for years because none worked long-term. Now for over 10 years, I cook easy healthy meals for my family. I can help you with “What’s for dinner?” too.

        17 comments on “Massaged Kale Salad with Winter Fruit

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          1. Hi Christine. You know, that is so true. I always get protective over certain foods making sure they are not gone before making into an actual recipe.:)

        1. You had me at orange ginger dressing – 2 of my most persistent pregnancy cravings this time around. I could probably eat this dressing by itself, no salad needed, but the salad looks gorgeous too 🙂

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