Jan 21, 2016

Mexican-Inspired Kale Salad

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
I love how all the textures in this salad come together; the crunch of the croutons and pumpkin seeds contrast with the creamy roasted butternut squash and queso fresco.

jump toRECIPE

I love how all the textures in this salad come together; the crunch of the croutons and pumpkin seeds contrast with the creamy roasted butternut squash and queso fresco.

Mexican-Inspired Kale Salad

Mexican kale salad side

Key Ingredients in This Recipe

  • Kale – Dino (also known as Tuscan) kale is better than curly kale in salads because it is easier to chew. Kale doesn’t wilt as fast as lettuce so you can dress the salad in advance. This works especially well if you want to take this salad to work for lunch.
  • Butternut squash – Butternut squash has a sweet nutty taste similar to pumpkin. To roast the squash toss the diced squash in a bit of olive oil and bake at 400ºF for about 20 minutes.
  • Pepitas – While the pumpkin seeds you remove from the pumpkin are white and thin, pepitas are green and small and while they are indeed pumpkin seeds they only come from certain pumpkins that don’t require shelling, namely oilseed or Styrian pumpkin varieties.

How to Make Mexican-Inspired Kale Salad

For the dressing:

  1. Mix the dressing. In a small mixing bowl whisk together the lime zest, lime juice, agave, olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Set the dressing aside until ready to use.

For the croutons:

  1. Toss cubed bread in oil. Heat the oven to 325°F. Slice a baguette into ½-inch slices. Cut the slices into ½-inch cubes. Add to a large bowl and toss with olive oil and garlic. Make sure all of the pieces are lightly coated. Add more of the oil if needed. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  2. Bake croutons. Add the cilantro and toss once more to coat. Spread the croutons in a single layer on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, until croutons are crisp and golden brown. Let cool.

For the salad:

  1. Toss kale with dressing and massage. Toss ¼ cup of the dressing with the kale. Massage the dressing into the kale then let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes.
  2. Toss with remaining ingredients. Add the queso fresco, butternut squash, pumpkin seeds, radish and 1 cup of the croutons.
  3. Assemble and serve. Toss to combine then serve.
Mexican kale salad with butternut squash and croutons

Other Recipes to Try

If you enjoy this recipe, I recommend checking out some of these:

Mexican-Inspired Kale Salad

Print Pin
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Serves 2

Ingredients:

For the dressing:

  • zest from two limes
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons agave
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper

For the cilantro croutons:

  • ½ day old baguette
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, additional if needed
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • Kosher salt, as needed

For the salad:

  • 1 bunch Dinosaur or Tuscan kale, ribs removed and cut into a chiffonade (about 5 cups)
  • ¼ cup crumbled queso fresco
  • 1/3 cup roasted butternut squash
  • 2 tablespoons pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
  • 2 radishes, thinly sliced

Instructions:

For the dressing:

  • In a small mixing bowl whisk together the lime zest, lime juice, agave, olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Set the dressing aside until ready to use.

For the croutons:

  • Heat the oven to 325°F (170ºC). Slice a baguette into ½-inch slices. Cut the slices into ½-inch cubes. Add to a large bowl and toss with olive oil and garlic. Make sure all of the pieces are lightly coated. Add more of the oil if needed. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Add the cilantro and toss once more to coat. Spread the croutons in a single layer on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, until croutons are crisp and golden brown. Let cool.

For the salad:

  • Toss ¼ cup of the dressing with the kale. Massage the dressing into the kale then let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Add the queso fresco, butternut squash, pumpkin seeds, radish and 1 cup of the croutons.
  • Toss to combine then serve.

DID YOU MAKE THIS?

TAG ME ON INSTAGRAM TO BE FEATURED ON MY STORIES! @cookingwithcocktailrings

Rate + Review

WHAT DID YOU THINK OF THIS RECIPE?

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe Rating