Massaged Kale Salad Recipe

This massaged kale salad recipe, is fresh, sweet and delightfully crisp.

From Global Greens
Fall 2013

  • Try mango and dried cherries instead of apples and cranberries. Sunflower or pumpkin seeds are fine substitutes for pistachios.
    Photo by Aviva Furman

Main Article:
Global Greens

Massaged Kale Salad Recipe

I was originally introduced to this salad by nutritionist and author Cynthia Lair (Feeding the Whole Family: Recipes for Babies, Young Children and Their Parents) of Bastyr University. The basis for the recipe is kale which has been tenderized by salt rather than cooking. Massaging coarse salt into the raw kale breaks down the cell walls, turning it a vibrant green and removing the raw kale taste. The recipe can be adapted to whatever is in your cupboard or in season.


• 1 bunch of kale, any variety
• 1 teaspoon coarse salt
• 1 tart apple
• Juice from 1/2 large lemon
• 1/4 cup dried cranberries
• 1/4 cup unsalted pistachio nuts
• 1/2 small red onion
• 1/4 cup blue cheese, crumbled (optional)
• 1/4 cup virgin olive oil


1. Wash kale.

2. Strip the leaves from the ribs and tear into bite size pieces.

3. Sprinkle salt onto the kale and massage in using your fingers. The kale will turn a darker green and start to release some of its juices.

4. Core apples and dice into cubes. Sprinkle with lemon juice.

5. Cut onion into fine dice.

6. Add apples, onions, cranberries, pistachio nuts, olive oil and blue cheese to the kale.

7. Toss well and refrigerate before serving.

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