Summertime means summer gardens filled with so many of our favorite things! Our Chopped Kale Salad has chopped collard greens, chopped kale, and pak choi. It’s the ultimate summer salad, perfect for the bounty of summer. Grab the recipe down below!
Chopped Kale Salad
Summer in a bowl means lush fresh salads around here! This year, we didn’t hold back and planted a variety of crisp, nutrient-rich edible plants like Swiss Chard, red Russian kale, collard greens, arugula, radishes because the leaves are edible too. And, with so much abundance, this year’s family plot is producing over time, so there’s no shortage of green leafy goodness. Plus, any good summer salad gets extra points for added color.
And by color, we’re talking ripe, juicy blueberries, red onions, chopped Honeycrisp apples, vine-ripened cherry tomatoes, and dainty cubes of roughly peeled summer squash. But, make no mistake, this salad tastes as good as it looks!
What You’ll Need To Make Our Chopped Kale Salad:
Collard Greens. Swiss Chard. Red Russian Kale. These three greens are major super greens, which means they’re nutrient-dense and a good protein source. When making a chopped salad made with denser greens like collard greens and kale, I use a very sharp chef’s knife and cut the greens into the thinnest of ribbons. Doing this also makes it easier to eat.
Red Onions. Cherry Tomatoes. Sweet Red Bell Peppers. Summer Squash. Adding red onions adds a bit of spice, while the sun-ripened cherry tomatoes keep things juicy; I also love the little cubes of sweet red bell peppers and summer squash for added nutritional value and their softer texture contrasts nicely with the hardier greens.
Honeycrisp Apples & Blueberries. The crisp, slightly tart, and subtlety sweet of the Honeycrisp apples complement nicely with the soft bursting fruitiness of the blueberries. Although I don’t mind the bitter quality of the collard greens and kale, the sweetness brings a bit of sweetness to this garden party in a salad bowl.
Marzetti Sweet Italian Dressing. You don’t want to mare the fresh flavors with just any dressing with so much green goodness. For our Chopped Summer Salad, we used one of our favorites, Marzetti’s Sweet Italian Dressing, and with no preservatives, its flavor has summer salads written all over it. It’s how you make a better salad, better!
I added both sunflower and radish leaves, just because. And also, because, up until a few years ago, I didn’t know sunflower and the leaves of radish plants were edible. As a gardener growing in knowledge is everything. Radish leaves are as versatile as they are nutrient-rich and outside of salad making; they’re also just as delicious sautéed with a bit of extra virgin oil and garlic and finished with a squeeze of lemon juice for an easy side. Sunflower leaves are so versatile too!
*Bonus Ingredients include tender Sunflower Leaves & Radish Leaves. Sunflower leaves and the petals of the flower can be boiled or steeped for an enriched tea. Gather a bunch of sunflower leaves and use them much like you would spinach and blanch, boil, or gently sauté to pair with your favorite grilled foods like steak, chicken, or salmon.
Chopped Kale Salad
- 2 cups chopped kale
- 1 cup chopped collard greens
- 1 cup chopped pak choi or bok choi (bok choy)
- 1/2 cup chopped sunflower leaves
- 1/2 cup chopped radish leaves
- 1 small red onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 Honeycrisp apple, skin left on, and cut into small cubes
- 1 large sweet red pepper, cut, with the pitch and seeds removed and cut into small cubes
- 1 small green or yellow summer squash, roughly with some of the skin intact, slice and cut into small cubes
- 8-10 cherry tomatoes
- 20-30 ripe blueberries
Directions on how to make this fresh summer salad:
Add ingredients into a large salad bowl, and toss well, divide into individual serving bowls, add sea salt and freshly cracked black peppercorns to taste. We used Marzetti’s Sweet Italian dressing for this salad, it’s sweet but not too sweet, plus it has zero preservatives and gluten-free. All that, and great taste! Highly recommend.
Now that you have the recipe, it’s a great time to harvest some of the ready-to-eat veggies from your summer garden and enjoy all of the delicious flavors in a variety of ways. No garden? No worries, hit up local farmers’ markets, check online for specific dates and times when they’re open. Also, take a drive in the country, and you’ll local growers with produce stands heavy laden with so many fresh fruits and vegetables. And, as always, if you have questions, drop us a line in the comments section down below.