This Kale and Romaine Cranberry Almond Salad is super simple to put together and tossed with the most delicious, homemade balsamic cashew butter dressing.
Hey hey hey. How is everyone doing on this FINE Monday? I know many people hate Mondays… I’d be lying if I said it was my favorite day of the week. But I’m thinking maybe if we just start pretending like we love Mondays… maybe we will ACTUALLY start to love them? Maybe? Am I being just a little too positive for a Monday? It was worth a shot. But really, I am going to see if I can trick myself into liking Mondays from now on. It’s a fresh start to the week. You can set some goals perhaps you’d like to reach by Friday? And I am saying all of this to you because I think if I say it here, I am 80% more likely to actually do something about it. Or maybe I should just stick to writing about the recipes. I’m probably not making any sense right now…
Anywayssss… let’s talk about how much I love this salad. I’m SLIGHTLY obsessed with the dressing. It’s a take on my dressing from this salad, but I threw in cashew butter and added a touch of EVOO.
The reason this salad came about was for my office’s department holiday luncheon. I was one of the last people to write down what I was bringing. I scrolled through the sign-up sheet and didn’t see a single green thing. So naturally I felt it was my duty to bring a bowl of greens. My fridge was already stocked with a tub of kale and a large head of romaine, and because I
was am on a cashew butter kick, I wanted to use some in a salad dressing. I was a little nervous to bring this kale-based salad to work. Kale can be a tricky green for some people, which is part of the reason I added equal parts of romaine.
Another tip for getting people on the kale bandwagon? MASSAGE THE KALE. The first time I bought kale was at a local farmer’s market a few years ago, and when the lady I was buying it from told me to massage the leaves first, I definitely thought she was some crazy hippy lady. I didn’t listen to her and the first time I added kale to my salad it was dry and bitter, even with the dressing I added. The next time I listened to her and massaged the leaves with some extra virgin olive oil and my salad tasted 10x better. So just trust me (and the farmer’s market lady) and massage your kale.
After you massage your kale, the rest of the salad couldn’t come together any easier. All you have to do is add in your cranberries and sliced almonds…
I received a ton of compliments on this salad, and the dressing was a huge part of that. I think this is going to be my go-to from now on for big gatherings. TRY THIS SALAD. You won’t be disappointed!
- 4 cups kale, stems removed, roughly chopped
- 4 cups romaine, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- For the dressing:
- 3.5 TBS balsamic vinegar
- 2.5 TBS cashew butter (I used homemade)
- 1.5 TBS pure grade B maple syrup
- 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp stone ground mustard (you can leave out but I prefer the extra flavor)
- 1–2 TBS water (to desired consistency)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Wash and dry your greens (I used my salad spinner).
- Massage kale leaves with EVOO to soften leaves. (Just trust me.)
- Add greens to large bowl.
- Toss in almonds and dried cranberries.
- Make your dressing and add in about 1/4-1/3 cup of the dressing, tossing to coat. (I like to start with a little less dressing, and let people add in more if they choose.)
- Serve salad as side dish or as meal by adding your choice of extra toppings and protein.
ADDITIONAL TOPPING SUGGESTIONS: Avocado, roma tomatoes, roasted sweet potatoes, crumbled feta, grilled chicken breast, etc.
-Store any leftover dressing in sealed jar in fridge, up to 5 days fresh.
-To serve a large crowd, I’d up the greens to 6 cups each of kale and romaine (12 cups total), and add about 3/4 up each of the cranberries and almonds. Double dressing if you want more leftover.
I haven’t even asked you yet…
DO YOU HAVE ANY GOALS FOR 2016? Two of my goals for 2016 is to *actually* start a budget, and also give yoga a fair go.
HAVE YOU MASSAGED YOUR KALE LATELY?
Have a great Monday!
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