Shredded coconut give this kale salad with orange a touch of tropical flair while also standing up to the bold flavor of kale. Orange is a refreshing addition to this winter salad, while toasted sesame oil give is a slight Asian flair. Smoked tofu, which could be an optional add-in, makes this nutrient-packed vegan salad worthy of becoming a main meal salad.
Inspiration for this kale salad with orange and coconut
This salad is an adaption of a salad that I a friend of mine made from the blog “An Endless Meal”. My version is made with Valencia oranges, a mix of curly kale, red Russian kale and Tuscan kale, red onion, smoked tofu, and a dressing made with freshly squeezed orange juice, roasted sesame oil, maple syrup and Japanese rice wine vinegar. As with the original, it also includes toasted coconut flakes and sesame seeds. The result is a simple but delicious winter salad with bright flavours reminiscent of summer.
How to adapt this kale salad recipe
- Massage the kale and roast half of it in the oven for 10-12 minutes at 350°F /180°C, to get some crispness. Roasted kale is a great addition to salads.
- Opt for only Tuscan kale. It’s more tender, milder and sweeter than regular kale.
- Add a drizzle of apple cider vinegar for more zing. Or try an Asian-style dressing like in this recipe for Asian-Style Kale Salad with Brown Rice and Smoked Tofu.
- Trade out sesame seeds for toasted sunflower seeds or cashews.
- Add some diced avocado.
- Trade orange for mango and add some freshly squeezed lime juice.
- Skip the tofu and serve with salmon or chicken.
Looking for other kale salad recipes?
Try one of these favourites:
- Fall Salad with Tuscan Kale and Parmesan-Roasted Potatoes
- Barley Risotto with Feta and Kale
- Kale Salad with Roasted Vegetables, Lentils and Tahini Dressing
- Simple Kale Salad with Lemon-Tahini Dressing
Kale Salad with Orange and Coconut
For the salad:
- 1 bunch of Tuscan kale, curly kale or mixed variety, stem removed and torn into bite-sized pieces (250-300 g bunch, 150 g leaves)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, to massage the leaves
- Sea salt, to taste
- 1/3 cup unsweetened coconut flakes, lightly toasted (15 g)
- 2 oranges, peeled and segmented (such as valencia, navel or cara cara)
- 1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
- 200 g smoked tofu, diced (such as sesame-almond smoked tofu)
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
For the dressing:
- Juice from the sectioned oranges (4 tablespoons or more)
- 2 teaspoons roasted sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice wine vinegar (Japanese)
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Add the kale to a large salad bowl and drizzle with the olive oil and and add a pinch of salt. Use your hands to massage the kale and break down its texture a bit until the kale starts to soften and wilt, 3-5 minutes. Set aside.
Toast coconut in a dry medium skillet over medium heat, tossing once or twice, until most flakes are golden, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a small plate.
Using a paring knife, remove the peel and white pith from the oranges (being careful not to remove too much flesh). Segment the orange, catching any juices in a bowl, then squeeze any excess juice from the off-cut pith into the bowl as well. Add the sesame oil, maple syrup and rice wine vinegar to the bowl with the orange juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and whisk to combine.
Pour the dressing over the kale and toss until evenly coated. Add the orange, red onion, smoked tofu, coconut and sesame seeds and toss again.
Serve and enjoy!
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