Is there anything more “vegan” than a kale and edamame salad? Don’t let the cliché nature of this recipe fool you though – this crave-worthy salad is delicious and it’s the perfect meal for warm summer days.
A few weeks ago I admitted my love of Trader Joe’s prepared foods. When life gets busy, I like to stock up on their ready-made salads, spring rolls, and vegan wraps. Life is a little bit slower these days, thankfully, but I still find myself with a hankering for the Trader Joe’s foods I love. Their Kale and Edamame Bistro Salad is one of them. Rather than head out to the store, I decided to make my own at home.
The star of this salad is the Lemon Herb Dressing. The store-bough version is made with vegan mayo, but I’ve made mine with cashews. Cashews are more nutritious than mayonnaise, and since they blend up smooth and creamy, they lend themselves well to salad dressings.
The premade salad is made with chopped kale, stems and all. I always find myself digging around in the package removing to remove the stems, because I can’t stand them. (Which is the reason why I don’t like to buy prepackaged chopped kale.) I’ve removed them here, and I’ve massaged the dressing into the greens, since raw kale can be a little tough to chew.
Loaded with edamame, almonds, tomatoes, and cranberries, this salad has become one of my favorites. It’s the perfect dinner for those hot summer days when you just don’t feel like cooking, and it makes for a filling lunch. I hope you like it as much as I do!
- ½ cup raw cashews, soaked for two hours, drained and rinsed
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- ¼ cup water
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ cup loosely packed fresh parsley
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- 1 bunch kale, stems removed, torn into bite-sized pieces
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- 1 cup grape tomatoes, sliced in half
- ½ cup edamame, fresh or thawed frozen
- ¼ cup unsweetened dried cranberries
- ¼ cup slivered almonds
- In a food processor or high speed blender, mix together the cashews, lemon juice, water, garlic, apple cider vinegar, mustard, onion powder, and sea salt until smooth and creamy. Pulse in the parsley and thyme.
- Place the kale in a large bowl and pour the dressing over it. Use your hands to massage the dressing into the kale until the kale begins to soften. Don’t over-massage it, or it will become too mushy.
- Add the sliced scallions, grape tomatoes, edamame, cranberries, and almonds to the bowl, and gently toss to combine.
- Serve cold or at room temperature.