Lemon Parmesan Kale Salad
This Lemon Parmesan Kale Salad with toasted pine nuts is our favorite easy kale salad! It is just as good the second day for a healthy meal prep lunch.
Happy New Year friends! This is one of my very favorite times of the year. I love that January feels like a fresh start. A time to reflect, plan, and set goals for the coming year.
Do you make new year’s resolutions or goals? I’d love to hear what they are! Leave a comment or shoot me an email to let me know. 🙂
Most of my goals for this year are things that feel like a work in progress. You know, those things that you’ve wanted to do for a long time, have sort of half started, but you still don’t feel like you have a good grasp on them?
I was trying to think of one thing that I could do that would help all of my goals fall into place. I realized that what I need to do is plan my time better.
By getting into a routine of planning for my days, I can make sure that I make time for my most important goals. I have a planner that I love, but I often forget to use it to keep track of what I need to get done. My goal is to sit down for 5-10 minutes each evening to plan for the next day.
I’m writing down my big goals for 2018 and will use these to guide my daily planning, to make sure I stay on track.
For example, I want to get into a consistent exercise routine. The only way that I’m going to make that happen is to write my daily workouts on my calendar and stick to my plan.
I’m also hoping to do some organizing and decluttering around my house. If I plan a few small time blocks each week to focus on this, I’ll actually make some progress.
A new year, a fresh, new beginning! I’m excited, how about you?
If you are trying to live a little more healthfully now that the holidays are over (aren’t we all?), then adding more greens to your diet is a good place to start. This kale salad is lightly dressed with a lemon and garlic dressing, and topped with Parmesan cheese and toasted pine nuts for crunch and flavor. It’s super simple and even more delicious than you might expect!
I like making kale salads because the leftovers are usually even better the next day. You know how most dressed salads turn soggy the second day? Not kale salads. The dressing continues to soften the tough kale leaves, making for a great second day lunch. My massaged kale salad is another favorite.
If you’re new to cooking with kale, a word of warning that it does have quite a bit more texture than spinach or green leaf lettuce. It takes some getting used to, but I’ve come to love it! Here are a few other recipes with kale that you might try:
Be sure to check out my post about how to wash kale. You’ll learn the best way to cut, wash and store kale.
Tips for making this healthy Lemon Parmesan Kale Salad:
- This salad is best if you let it sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving, so the dressing can soften the kale. If you don’t want to wait, you can massage the kale in your hands for a few minutes before you add the dressing to help soften it.
- This recipe calls for green curly kale, which is a hearty green that holds up well when dressed ahead of time. You can also use baby kale in this salad, but serve it immediately because the baby kale leaves are much more delicate.
- This salad holds up well for 2-3 days in the refrigerator. To make it more filling as a meal prep lunch, try adding some sliced chicken or chickpeas. These glass storage containers are perfect for work lunches.
- For extra satiating healthy fat, add some avocado.
This post was originally published in January 2014. I’ve updated it with new photos and text. If you read the comments below, the book that I referred to in the original post was Organized Simplicity by Tsh Oxenreider.
Lemon Parmesan Kale Salad
- 6 cups green curly kale
- 1 small clove garlic
- 2 ½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 ½ teaspoons honey
- 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
- Kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup pine nuts
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus shavings for topping the salad
- Cut kale leaves off of stalks; discard stalks. Chop leaves into strips and wash thoroughly in a bowl of cold water. (See this post for a video of how to prep kale.) Dry kale and place in a large bowl. Set aside.
- On a cutting board, mince garlic and then sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Use a fork or the side of a chef's knife to mash the garlic and salt into a paste. Transfer to a small bowl.
- Add the olive oil, lemon juice, honey, white wine vinegar, a pinch of salt, and a few grinds of pepper to the bowl with the garlic. Whisk until well combined. Pour the dressing over the kale and use your hands or salad tongs to evenly distribute the dressing. Cover and place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, and up to 24 hours. During this time the dressing will help soften the kale leaves.
- Meanwhile, toast the pine nuts in a small skillet over low heat. Watch them carefully; they are done when they are fragrant and just beginning to turn golden. Transfer pine nuts to a small bowl and set aside.
- Right before serving, add the freshly grated Parmesan cheese to the kale and toss to mix well. Serve salad topped with toasted pine nuts and Parmesan shavings.
This salad looks good, and I think I need that book. 🙂 I really enjoyed reading this post – thanks!
I finished reading that book yesterday and really enjoyed it. Thanks for the recommendation!
You are welcome! I’m still working my way through the book, but I’m getting lots of good ideas along the way. 🙂
I’ve made this salad twice already- it’s just that delicious. As you said, the kale softens as it sits, so it’s a great salad to make a lot of to have on hand for lunch/dinner side for a day or two. Thanks for the recipe!
Yes, this is a great salad to have on hand. I’m so glad you are enjoying it!
I made this salad for Christmas dinner and it was amazing!! Definitely the best Kale salad I’ve had. Thank you Kristine!
Thank you for letting me know, Melanie! I’m so glad you enjoyed this salad. It’s definitely a favorite of mine!
Hi Kristine, lovely recipe for easy too. M , big deal fan, can you help with mor o simpler kal salad recipes as this one..??
Hi Hema, thank you! I also like this easy kale salad, this one with blueberries and quinoa, and this avocado kale salad. Enjoy!
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Such a pretty salad for the new year! I LOVE the sound of lemon, parmesan, and pine nuts all hanging out in a gorgeous kale salad!
Thank you so much, Sarah!