An easy Marinated Kale Salad recipe with avocado, tomato, and a flavorful dressing. This is the salad that makes us crave kale! (Vegan, gluten-free, oil-free.)
Are you ready to crave kale? I know how that sounds and you probably have your doubts. But take one bite of this marinated salad and I think you might believe.
We've been making it about twice a week lately, and I'm happy to have a kale recipe we absolutely love.
Especially since kale is such a nutrient-dense food with many claimed health benefits including anti-inflammatory compounds, antioxidants, and cancer-fighting phytonutrients.
Let's get to it!
Ingredients for Marinated Kale Salad
For this recipe, you will toss together in a large bowl:
- Large bunch of fresh kale: Most often I use curly kale, but lacinato kale works great too.
- Grape tomatoes or cherry tomatoes: I use these because they are so sweet and flavorful. But you can substitute with roma tomatoes or other garden tomatoes if desired.
- Red onion: Or you can use green onion (scallions) for a milder flavor.
- Sunflower seeds
- Fresh lemon juice: You will need about one lemon for this recipe. (You could also include a little lemon zest to taste.)
- Tamari: Or substitute soy sauce, but I use tamari for gluten-free. Coconut aminos could also work. Be sure to use low sodium if desired.
Garlic: Add one fresh minced garlic clove if you like the flavor.
Chickpeas: Add garbanzo beans for extra plant-based protein and fiber if desired.
Olive oil: I keep the salad dressing oil-free, but feel free to toss in a teaspoon or tablespoon of good quality olive oil after you massage the kale.
Other possible additions: Dijon mustard, black pepper, sesame seeds, Vegan Parmesan Cheese, grains like quinoa, or even almonds for crunch.
This salad is best enjoyed within a day. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge. It continues to marinate and soften, so I try to enjoy it the same day.
Marinated Kale Salad
- 1 large bunch curly kale*
- 1/4 cup red onion, thinly sliced
- 5 oz. cherry/grape tomatoes
- 1/2 avocado
- 3 Tbsp. sunflower seeds
For the dressing:
- 3 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
- 1 1/2 Tbsp. tamari (more/less as desired)
- Tear/chop kale into bite-size pieces (stems removed). Place in a large bowl and lightly massage to tenderize.
- Thinly slice red onion. Add to kale.
- Add lemon juice and tamari. Toss well to thoroughly coat. Set aside and let the kale and onion marinate for about 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, dice tomato and avocado.
- Add tomato to salad and toss again. Top with avocado and sunflower seeds before serving. Best enjoyed within a day.
Nutrition Per Serving (Estimate)
Sodium: This is omitted as I cannot provide an accurate number. I encourage you to calculate your own to provide a much more precise reading based on the exact ingredients, brands, and amounts you're using.
If you are enjoying this Kale Avocado Tomato Salad, also check out:
- Vegan Greek Salad
- Vegan Taco Salad with Creamy Southwestern Dressing
- Asian-Style Kale and Tofu Salad with Peanut Dressing