Nutrient-packed and delicious, this kale salad with beets is earthy, full of flavors and textures! Curly kale paired with sweet beets and dried cranberries, creamy goat cheese and crunchy raw pumpkin seeds tossed in a zesty homemade orange and shallot vinaigrette. Fresh, beautiful and vegetarian.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- This is a superfood salad, full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Kale is high in Vitamin A, K and C as well as folate which is good for the brain. Beets have anti-inflammatory benefits and are a good source of fiber. Pumpkin seeds are rich in iron, zinc and magnesium. This kale and beet salad is super tasty and good for your body too!
- It's packed with flavor and different textures! This is definitely an earthy salad, but the sweetness of the beets and cranberries and the creaminess of the goat cheese balance the unique taste of the kale so well. Add some crunch with the pumpkin seeds, and that orange dressing is absolutely delicious and the real star of this recipe for me!
- It's a such a beautiful salad, great for meal-prep but also for a side dish for gatherings any time of the year or the holiday season with friends and family.
- It's customizable! Add some chicken or chickpeas for extra protein, walnuts or pecans if you enjoy nuts, or really anything else you love in your salads.
- Curly kale: I used curly kale for this recipe, but if you prefer Tuscan, Lacinato or Dinosaur kale, it'll absolutely work too. I did a mix of green and red curly kale.
- Beets: you're welcome to cook your own beets, either by steaming or roasting them but I'm all about quick and convenient so I used pre-packaged steamed beets which I love to have on hands.
- Goat cheese: I believe that beets and goat cheese are a perfect match. The creaminess of the goat cheese complements the texture of the kale too.
- Dried cranberries: their sweetness is such a nice addition to this earthy salad.
- Raw pumpkin seeds: you can also find those as pepitas, they add a nice crunch and you can easily replace them with pecans or walnuts if you prefer.
- Fresh orange: you only need one for the zest and fresh juice to make the dressing.
How To Prepare Kale
- The 1st step is removing the big middle stem. You can use a knife and cut the kale leaves along the stem, of simply tear the leaves with your hands. You can also use a stem stripping tool.
- Once the stems are removed, chop the kale.
- Wash and rinse the kale thoroughly with cold water. Kale can get pretty dirty.
- Dry the kale, my favorite way is using a salad spinner and then patting it dry with paper towels.
- Massage the kale: this step is very important and I highly recommend not skipping it. It'll make it a lot more tender and not so chewy. To do so, drizzle a tiny bit of olive or avocado oil over the kale, and literally massage is using your hands for about 2 minutes or until if feels significantly more tender. Don't overdo it, but do it enough, you can taste a piece to see if it's ready.
How To Make This Kale With Beets Salad
- First step is washing, drying and massaging the kale (see above for instructions)
- Chop the beets into bite size.
- Wash the fresh orange, then zest enough to get about 1 good teaspoon, then juice the orange and reserve about 2 tablespoons for the dressing.
- Whisk together all the orange vinaigrette ingredients.
- Gently combine together the kale, beets, pumpkin seeds, dried cranberries and crumbled goat cheese. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper.
- Toss in the salad dressing. And serve!
Prepare the kale, and then massage it.
Zest and juice an orange.
Whisk together the orange vinaigrette ingredients.
Combine all ingredients and toss in vinaigrette. Enjoy!
More Delicious Salads To Try
- Mediterranean Cucumber Salad
- Quinoa Arugula Salad
- Hearts of Palm Salad
- Tuna and Bean Salad With Corn and Avocado
TIPS AND FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- Massage the kale! I repeat massage the kale if you don't want to be chewing for hours. I'm obviously exaggerating a tad, but kale can be a little tough and massaging it makes a big difference in making it more tender.
- If you meal-prep or prepare this salad in advance, save the dressing on the side until ready to eat. I personally don't mind leftovers of kale salad with beets already dressed for a couple of days, but the leaves could get a little soggy.
- Can I use a different kind of kale besides curly kale? Absolutely, you can use Tuscan kale also called Lacinato or Dinosaur kale. Baby kale will work too. Use what you enjoy the most.
Kale Salad with Beets
- 1 bunch curly kale about 5-6 cups
- 1 drizzle avocado oil or extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup cooked beets chopped, about 8 ounces (pre-packaged or cook your own)
- ⅓ cup crumbled goat cheese
- ¼ cup raw pumpkin seeds also called pepitas
- ¼ cup dried cranberries 50% less sugar or regular
- salt to taste
- black pepper to taste
- Prepare the kale: remove middle thick stem from kale by tearing the leaves with your hands or using a knife or herb stripping tool. Chop the kale, then wash it thoroughly. Dry it well using a salad spinner.
- Add kale to a large bowl, drizzle a small amount of olive or avocado oil, then massage the kale with your hands for about 2 minutes until it feels more tender.
- Wash an orange, using a zester or cheese grater zest the skin to get a good teaspoon of zest. Then juice the orange and reserve 2 tablespoons for the dressing.
- Whisk together all ingredients to make the orange vinaigrette.
- Assemble kale, chopped beets, crumbled goat cheese, pumpkin seeds and dried cranberries together. Sprinkle a little salt and black pepper, then toss in the vinaigrette. Serve and enjoy!
- Kale: instructions on how to prepare kale is in the written post above.
- White wine vinegar can be replaced with champagne vinegar.