Massaged Kale Salad with Tahini Dressing

I really wish I could make this salad for every single one of you. As someone who is mildly obsessed with vegetables and their benefits, I would practically pay you to let me feed this to you.

It is one of the healthiest (and in my opinion- most delicious) things you will find on this blog, and it is a heck of a way to kick off the New Year. This salad is LOADED with things that are good for you, and I made it in a way that you will want to eat the entire bowl in one sitting. Even if you think you don’t like Kale!

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Caramelized onions add a sweetness factor, avocado is hearty with lots of healthy fats, salted sunflower seeds add a punch of flavor and crunch, and a creamy tahini dressing brings it all together. If you’re not familiar with tahini, it is just pureed sesame seeds. It goes into hummus, so it resembles that type of flavor. You can pick it up at any grocery store and it comes in a jar similar to that of peanut butter.

I even “massaged” the kale leaves to break down their tough exterior. By massaging the leaves, it breaks down their tough cellulose structure, making the kale softer, less bitter, and easier to digest.

And…. this entire salad comes together in 15 minutes. Not to mention you can store it in your fridge and eat it 3 or 4 times during the week.

So let’s get started. First of all, get your red onion cranking. You want to let the onions cook for the entire time you are putting the salad together (about 15 minutes) so that they get nice and soft. Simple coat a pan with some EVOO, slice your onions super thin, and add them to the pan. Move them around every few minutes so that they don’t burn, and cook over medium heat.

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Now, let’s get the Kale going. I bought one bunch of Kale at the grocery store for about $2. Rip the leaves off the stems, and using your hands, just break the leaves into bite sized pieces. Add it all to a strainer and rinse. Transfer to a large salad bowl.

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Now let’s do the dressing. Mix 1 tablespoon tahini with 2 tablespoons water and a half tablespoon of EVOO. Mix in a small dressing bowl.

Are you ready to massage!??!

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Make sure your hands are clean, pour the dressing over the kale, and just spend two or three minutes massaging the dressing into the kale with your hands. Press it into the leaves, and you’ll notice the leaves immediately break down and wilt a little bit. Make sure the dressing is all up in there.

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Fannntastic.

Next step is to chop half an avocado. You can also use a whole avocado depending on your preference. Once that is done, you are ready to assemble.

Your onions should be done now, so add them to your kale, then top with avocado and a sprinkle of sunflower seeds.

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And there you have it! One of the healthiest things you can possible cook, all dressed up with tons of flavor and a delicious dressing.

I served myself a heaping bowl of this for lunch yesterday and added a drizzle more of straight up tahini on top for a little more flavor.

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I have a feeling this salad will turn into a staple in my lil’ Studio. I already can’t wait to break into the leftovers and I feel amazing eating this. I hope you give it a shot!

Massaged Kale Salad with Tahini Dressing

(this makes at least 4 or 5 small servings…but I eat it as a meal so it made about 2.5 large servings for me. )

  • 1 bunch kale
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 1/2 avocado, chopped
  • 2 T sunflower seeds (I used roasted and salted)
  • 1 T tahini
  • 2 T water
  • 1 T olive oil (half for the pan for the onions, half for the dressing)

1. Slice onion very thin. Add to a oiled pan and cook over medium heat for about 10-15 minutes. Every few minutes, just stir the onions to keep them from burning.

2. While onions cook, prepare Kale. Break leaves off stems and into small bite sized pieces. Rinse and transfer to salad bowl.

3. For dressing: mix together tahini, water and 1/2 of EVOO. Stir. Add to Kale and massage into it with your fingers for 2-3 minutes.

4. Top kale with onions, avocado and sesame seeds.

5. Optional: drizzle your portion of salad with a little more tahini if you’d like some more flavor.

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8 thoughts on “Massaged Kale Salad with Tahini Dressing

  1. I know what I am bringing to work for lunch next week! I have never massaged kale, I’m excited to see how it turns out πŸ™‚ Do you think grilled salmon or chicken would be a good addition to this for a little added protein?

  2. Hope you had a good vacation!! This looks so delicious. I absolutely loveee anything with caramelized onions. All I’d need at the store would be avocado and I could make this salad. Hmmm.. dinner tomorrow maybe!!

  3. I am willing to try this, even though I don’t like raw kale, but eat it in things. It does look good, especially the carmelized onions. I am thinking of using a meat tenderizer tool lightly on the kale, rather than massaging.

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