Kale Caesar Salad

IMG_5285Kale, kale, kale… You’ve been the talk of the town for months, or maybe years now? With a ton of kale bunches growing at our family’s backyard garden, it is inevitable that I blog about a kale recipe. So instead of making another kale post bragging to give you more healthy benefits, I chose a different route. Re-inventing a salad that allegedly contains a lot of fat and calories seemed like the better option.

I like using kale instead of lettuce for Caesar salads because it can hold it’s texture and crunch a lot longer than lettuce. It also adds bitterness to the creamy Caesar salad dressing. Instead of croutons, I used diced fresh tomatoes to add some sweetness and slight tang into the salad. And my secret ingredient to adding a little bit of spice (and yes more health benefits) paprika!

Ingredients:

  • kale bunches
  • diced fresh tomatoes
  • Caesar salad dressing (homemade or store bought is fine)
  • grated smoked gouda
  • bacon, roughly chopped to smaller pieces
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • salt & pepper

Procedure:

  1. Wash your kale bunches and separate the leaves from the stalk
  2. With your knife, chop the kale leaves into smaller pieces; you can tear the leaves with your hands as well
  3. Set the kale aside in a large bowl
  4. Wash the tomato before dicing it
  5. Once diced, add the fresh tomatoes into the same bowl with the kale
  6. Roughly chop 2-3 pieces of bacon strips
  7. Add the roughly chopped bacon into the same large bowl
  8. Sprinkle salt, pepper and paprika over the large bowl
  9. Gently mix the ingredients around, then add about a table spoon of Caesar salad dressing
  10. Mix the ingredients around some more, then using a microplane grater, grate some smoked gouda into the mixture (around 2 tablespoons worth)
  11. Gently mix the salad again; you may noticed that because the cheese was added after the dressing, it sticks to the salad more effectively
  12. Check if you need to add a little bit more dressing and cheese into the salad to make sure that it is incorporated well; DO NOT over dress your salad! It makes the leaves soggy and you wouldn’t be eating a salad at that point, you would be eating dressing.

Yes, it’s not the healthiest with the cheese and the dressing but it’s healthier than the traditional! It’s all about the balance. You can add grilled chicken or even slices of steak to add more protein into the dish.

Enjoy! Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below 🙂

Always,

K

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4 thoughts on “Kale Caesar Salad

  1. Seema

    Hi Kaye, This sounds absolutely delicious. I love kale, but I’ve not often used it raw in a salad, and I’m excited to try it! Is there a certain kind bacon (or manner in which it has been cured) that you favor most in this recipe? For instance, should it be more smoked like the gouda or sweet to give a greater range of flavors? The smoked gouda is such a great idea for this recipe! I’m excited to try it!

    1. Hi Seema! I’m glad you found my new recipe 😊 there’s no specific kind of bacon to use for the recipe, so that’s totally up to you. Turkey bacon, or tempeh bacon also works well if you’re leaning to healthier alternatives as well! Let me know how it goes and if there are changes that I ought to make to improve the recipe😊 I’m always open to suggestions 👍🏻

      1. Seema

        Turkey bacon worked great with this recipe! Is there a nut that goes well with smoked foods? Maybe toasted almonds or a pine nut? Not sure how well pine nuts go with smoked flavors. But Kaye, I know a nut added to this would be a delicious bonus texture to mix in! I might try that next time! Thanks for all the help 🙂

      2. That’s great to hear Seema! & hmm I usually add walnuts or almonds but it depends on the other ingredients you’re using. Toasted sunflower seeds or pistachios would be delicious as well 😊 Thanks for trying my recipe! Appreciate it!

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