Chopped Kale Spring Salad from Grocery to Table
Hi friends! I’m excited to share this sweet and crunchy spring salad with you. We have been obsessed with this salad for the last couple of weeks. Our Chopped Kale Spring Salad was inspired by a salad that we get from a trendy salad place in Palo Alto, Sweet Green. Admittedly it is nice when someone else does the chopping, tossing, and salad serving for you. At $10 a bowl per person, however, I can’t help but think to myself (and usually outloud!) that I could make this salad at home. The combo of veggies, fruit and flavors is so good it’s worth replicating. It takes me 30 minutes start to finish to make this salad at home. I’m sure it would take you less since I make frequent stops to take pics of our food!
Clever how they post where all the ingredients come from – farm to table at it’s best. I am anxious to get our little wooden veggie garden bed going out on our back deck. In another month or so I’ll be ready to do some of my own backyard farming.
The portion size is decent at SweetGreen. There is only so much kale one can chew in a sitting 😉 Leyla likes to get hers with a couple of “premium add-in’s”; chicken and wild rice. I stick to the basics of the salad recipe I’m sharing – grapes, apples, carrots, almonds, and sometimes if I’m feeling indulgent, goat cheese.
Are you ready?? We’re going to make Chopped Kale Spring Salad together. I’m taking you to the grocery store with me! We will go on a virtual shopping adventure starting in my favorite section, produce.
Let’s grab a bag of pre-washed and chopped kale mix.
Next we are looking for those crunchy, cute little Persian cucumbers. Most stores have them and if not any type of cucumber will do.
Grab a bag of sweet purple grapes. We mostly snack on the big green/yellow grapes in the house but for this salad the purple ones are best.
Grab a couple of your favorite sweet yet tangy apples. Our favorite varieties are Pink Lady and Honey Crisp. I used Pink Ladies for this salad.
Look for a good avocado. You can tell if it’s ready by the color of the spot where the stem was. If it’s greenish it’s not ready. Brown is over- ripe. Something in between (sort of yellow with a touch of green) is ready today!
The kale salad kits pictured above do come with a packet of salad dressing. The “kale cranberry pecan” kit from Safeway comes with a tasty dijon dressing. The “Sweet Kale” kit from Costco comes with a creamy poppy seed dressing. Both are super yummy, however, since they are both cream-based and have a high caloric density, they are considered a red light in Kurbo. Something that will work for this salad but is a lighter (a yellow light in Kurbo!), try the following two dressings – Annie’s Lite Honey Mustard and Annie’s Lite Raspberry. Both are decent. I use the lite honey mustard and add extra spicy mustard/dijon to it for mine at home. I like the mustard combo with the apples. A simple vinaigrette will also work just fine in this salad.
A strange thing happened recently, our girls started loving roasted Brussel sprouts! Every once in a blue moon this phenomenon happens. When they were babies they would fight over green peas. Now it’s the roasted brussels. Go figure! I can’t make enough of them. It takes a bit of extra time to prep and cook up the sprouts. When I think of how nutritious they are and how crazy it is that our girls are currently loving them I just have to make them.
There are several optional add-in’s to this salad. Here are a few:
- chopped pecans (red light in Kurbo) or even better, use sliced almonds (yellow light in Kurbo)
- goat cheese (red light in Kurbo) or even better, non-fat feta cheese (yellow light in Kurbo)
- dried cranberries or slightly better, dried low-sugar Craisins (both are red lights)
- roasted brussel sprouts!
- cooked quinoa or cooked wild rice – will make it more filling
I find that nuts, dried berries, and cheese (especially goat cheese!) take this salad to a new level. In the spring and summer it’s fun to add color with festive edible flowers. They have edible flowers at Whole Foods. I hope to grow some this season. One of the perks of being a food blogger is taking the time for the food to look pretty – presentation is everything for those precious photos. Tonight when Ava sat down she said “my salad has flowers in it!” with a huge smile on her face. Guess who ate their salad all up?
Bonus of making this salad at home – the premium add-ins won’t cost you $2-5 per item 😉
Recipe for Chopped Kale Spring Salad:
- Kale salad mix pack
- ½ Pink Lady (or Honey Crisp) apple washed and cut into ½ inch cubes
- ½ fresh avocado, cubed
- 4 Persian cucumbers, peeled, halved and chopped
- 1 cup purple grapes, halved
- Optional add-ins:
- ¼ cup pecans, chopped (or sliced almonds)
- goat cheese or non-fat feta cheese
- roasted brussel sprouts
- ½ cup cooked quinoa or cooked wild rice
- Salad dressing - balsamic vinaigrette, lite raspberry dressing, or lite honey mustard dressing
- Edible flowers
- Empty kale salad mix pack
- Add all the ingredients
- Garnish with edible flowers