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Massaged Kale Salad

May 28, 2013

By Kath Dedon


We had classic all-American cheeseburgers (with Special Sauce) and Oven Fries for our Memorial Day dinner. I wanted to round the meal out with a light, nutritious side dish. Massaged Kale Salad was perfect!

I’ve noticed massaged kale recipes all over the Internet. Massaging the kale tenderizes the leaves making them much more appealing as a salad. I liked the simplicity of Eating Well’s version so I decided to give it a try.

Eating Well suggests that you can use any type of kale for this salad. I used the curly-leaf variety. Whatever type you use, just be sure to tear the leaves from the tough stems. The stems are not used in this salad.

So how did the Massaged Kale Salad taste? I loved it!

The Caesar-like dressing is a great match with the kale. Eating Well says the anchovy paste is optional, but it adds just the right amount of umami. I highly recommend it.

One thing I really love about this salad is the fact that it can be made ahead of time. The kale will not wilt. In fact, I discovered that it is still fantastic the next day and any leftover salad can be a great addition to lunch.

Give Massaged Kale Salad a try. It’s easy, delicious, and nutritious! I know I’ll be making it again. I’m looking forward to trying it with other varieties of kale.



Massaged Kale Salad



Massaged Kale Salad

(Adapted from a recipe in the September/October 2012 issue of Eating Well magazine)


(print the recipe)


Serves 3 – 4 (doubles easily)


1 bunch kale

¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil (use 1/3 cup, if doubling)

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 cloves garlic, minced

1½ teaspoons reduced-sodium soy sauce

¼ teaspoon anchovy paste

¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/8 teaspoon salt

1. Tear the leaves of kale from the tough stems. (Discard the stems.)

2. Wash and dry the kale leaves and tear into bite-sized pieces.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, soy sauce, anchovy paste, pepper and salt.

4. Add the kale and the Parmesan cheese to the dressing. With clean hands, massage the kale into the dressing. Keep massaging, spreading the dressing throughout the salad, until the kale has reduced in volume by about half and the leaves are a bit darker and more tender.

5. Taste to see if the seasonings need adjusting and serve. (The salad keeps well and can be made ahead of time.)

3 Comments leave one →
  1. May 29, 2013 8:19 am

    I love kale! such a great super food!

  2. July 18, 2013 1:29 pm

    Hi there, Carole’s Chatter is collecting recipes for dishes using anchovies or sardines today. This is a good one. I do hope you pop over and link in. This is the link . Cheers


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