In our new column, The Basics, we’re bringing you our easy tips and tricks to help you navigate your anti-inflammatory pantry, fridge, and freezer and make your life more delicious.

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Kale lettuce wraps on a wood cutting board.

What IS a massaged kale salad anyway?

Massaging kale is just an easy way of making the leafy greens tender by massaging olive oil and lemon juice into the leaves with your hands along with a sprinkle of sea salt. No cooking needed but one bite and you’ll think these greens have been steamed or sautéed because the massaging motion creates such a tender, flavorful leaf!

This is an easy way to make a salad in under 5 minutes when you don’t feel like cooking or following a long recipe. We’re sharing the most basic way to create your own massaged kale salad so that you can add your desired ingredients such as walnuts, almonds, organic chicken or protein of choice, beans or any other ingredient you’d like to make a full meal. This quick kale salad is a great option for a simple lunch or dinner side dish.

Any kale salad you make can be served with our vast array of veggie-based anti-inflammatory recipes and Amie’s cookbook


WHAT YOU NEED // We suggest always buying organic ingredients, especially kale since it’s part of the Dirty Dozen, the highest sprayed foods with pesticides/herbicides that will negatively affect your liver over time. Here are The Benefits of Eating Organic. 

  •       2-3 cups of organic kale leaves (1 head of curly or flat dinosaur kale)
  •       1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more if needed
  •       Juice of 1 large lemon
  •       1 tsp. sea salt


STEP 1: In a large bowl, combine the kale leaves, lemon juice, oil and sea salt. Discard the stems.

STEP 2: Using a massaging action similar to kneading dough, massage the kale with your hands for 2-3 minutes until the kale is a dark green color and tender to touch. Add the juice of a lemon with the lemon juicer (below in our SHOP) and a pinch of sea salt.

STEP 3: Transfer the salad to a large serving bowl (the wooden one we use is below in our SHOP).

HOW TO ADD FLAVOR // The above recipe is the base formula of a kale salad, you can add any flavorings that you desire.

The Dairy-Free Cheese recipes in Amie’s cookbook, Eating Clean, are ideal for kale salads because they add a dose of protein to every serving. If you’re not in the mood for dairy-free cheese, add a pinch of flavor with chili powder, fresh lemon zest or orange zest (see the microplane zester below in our SHOP) to your kale salad.

We use the tiny pinch bowls for sea salt and other spices so we can add a pinch here and there as needed (see below in our SHOP). These little bowls are ideal to have on hand in your kitchen for easy access. It only takes a few seconds to add to your bowl and it creates so much flavor from just a pinch!

HOW TO SERVE IT // We love using large wooden salad bowls because they look so beautiful on the table. The one we’re using right now is below in our SHOP. We have a ton of dressings that you can use from our Creamy Almond Dressing to our Lemon Tahini Dressing. Feel free to mix and match on different nights to see what dressing you like best and add that to your kale salad.


Listen to Amie walk you through how to massage kale step-by-step.

ADDITIONAL TIPS // Store leftovers in the refrigerator in a sealed container (see below for the glass container we use) for up to three days. You can revive the kale salad with some fresh lemon juice, if desired, when serving leftovers.


STILL HUNGRY? For more of our anti-inflammatory recipes, check out our 3 Month Anti-Inflammatory Meal Plan, which is only available for a limited time through summer.

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