This vegan kale salad with cranberries and maple vinaigrette is vegan, gluten free, soy free, and has no refined sugar! You can’t get much healthier than a bowl of kale, and you won’t be able to stop eating it prepared this way! Even my kids love this salad!
My parents came to visit last spring with 3 huge bags of spring kale that they had just picked from their garden. I needed to figure out what to do with all of it. It was so soft and tender, that it seemed like a shame to cook it, so I came up with this salad. It has been a favorite in my house ever since.
Kale has a naturally tough texture, so to soften it up, it needs to be massaged. I know it seems like a high maintenance vegetable, but it is well worth the effort. I like to use younger, more tender kale for this salad. If you are lucky enough to grow some in your garden or have a farmer’s market where you can find it, it is delicious. You can use regular kale and even the bagged shredded kale from the grocery store too, you just need to massage it a little more to get it tender.
A fresh vegan and gluten free spring salad make with kale and maple vinaigrette dressing.
- 6 cups of shredded Kale
- 1/3 cup Maple Vinaigrette Dressing see below
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- Sprinkle of salt optional
- ¼ cup pine nuts or other chopped nuts optional
Wash Kale well.
Ripe it into small pieces removing the hard stem.
Put into a large bowl and drizzle with the Maple Vinaigrette Dressing.
Sprinkle with a little salt (optional)
Use your hands to massage the dressing into the kale until it turns bright green and shiny.
Sprinkle with dried cranberries and top with nuts if desired.
Sometimes you can find maple vinaigrette in regular grocery stores, but if you can order it here or it can easily be whipped up in a few minutes. I usually have some made up in my fridge, because I love Maple Bacon Salad for lunch, Here is the recipe for the Balsamic Vinaigrette:
A sweet and savory vegan and gluten free dressing.
- ¾ cup canola oil
- ¼ cup water
- 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp yellow mustard
Put all the ingredients into a bottle.
Drizzle over your favorite salad.
This is one of those salads that is a hit with everyone! It can be made a few hours ahead of time and doesn’t get soggy with the dressing on it like salads made from lettuce. For this reason, it works great for potluck, dinner parties, and even packed lunches.
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