Drizzled with a vegan buttermilk-style dressing, this Strawberry Kale Salad is the perfect light meal for swelteringly hot summer days. Serve it as a main or side. It's makes a great lunch, but it almost makes a terrific light dinner. This easy recipe is vegan and gluten-free.
Strawberry Kale Salad
It’s been hot here. The kind of sticky, humid hot that makes any kind of simple activity seem like a daunting task. I don’t want to do anything except sit very still and drink buckets of iced tea.
Cooking dinner is at the top of my “I don’t wanna do it” list. Even though I have air conditioning, turning on the oven or standing over the stove to make a hot meal doesn’t sound appealing to me at all. I don't want to eat hot food, either. On these super hot days, I turn to raw foods and salads.
To keep my meals interesting, I’m always on the lookout for new salad recipes. This recipe is adapted from one I came across in The Food Network Magazine years ago. It was loaded with dairy, but that was easy to fix.
How to Make Strawberry Kale Salad
This recipe couldn't be easier to make!
- First you mix together the apple cider vinegar and almond or soy milk. You let it sit for 10 minutes to clabber or curdle.
- Then you place the mixture in your blender along with the cashews, lemon juice, mustard, sea salt, and garlic, and blend until it's smooth and creamy. If it's too thick, you can add a little water a tablespoon at a time.
- Once it's blended together, you stir the chives into the dressing.
- Finally, you place the baby kale, sliced endive, and strawberries into a large bowl and drizzle on the dressing. Top your salad with the sunflower seeds.
I recommend using raw cashews in this recipe. They’re softer and have a milder flavor than the roasted variety. I have a Blendtec, but I soak my cashews for about 2 hours before making dressings like this anyway. If you don’t have a high-speed blender, make sure you soak your cashews longer to help them blend easier.
Clabbering Nondairy Milk
Clabbering thickens and curdles milk, giving it a buttermilk-like consistency. To make clabbered milk, you just need to add vinegar or lemon juice to almond or soy milk. It won’t work with other non-dairy milks, so make sure you use almond or soy.
How to Customize Your Salad
You can easily make this salad your own!
- If you’d like to add a little more oomph, toss in some chickpeas or white beans.
- You can use pumpkin seeds to sliced almonds in the place of sunflower seeds.
- Blueberries or raspberries can be used instead of strawberries.
- You can use baby arugula or baby spinach instead of baby kale.
Strawberry Kale Salad
For the Dressing
- ½ cup almond or soy milk
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup raw cashews soaked for two hours, rinse and drained
- 1 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 tablespoons fresh chives chopped
For the Salad
- 5 ounces baby kale
- 1 pint strawberries sliced
- 3 endives sliced
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds roasted
- Make the dressing: Mix together the apple cider vinegar and non-dairy milk, and let sit for 10 minutes. It will curdle, which is what you want. Place the curdled milk in a blender along with the cashews, lemon juice, mustard, sea salt, and garlic. Blend until smooth and creamy. If the dressing seems too thick, add water, a teaspoon at a time. Stir in the chopped chives.
- Make the salad: Toss together the baby kale, strawberries, and endives in a large bowl. Drizzle on the dressing and top with the roasted sunflower seeds.
More kale salad recipes you might enjoy include:
- Tahini Kale Salad
- Kale Caesar with Roasted Chickpeas
- Holiday Kale Salad with Maple Mustard Dressing
- Kale and Edamame Salad with Lemon Herb Dressing