This Kale Salad with Thai Lime Chili Nuts will rock your Thai-loving palate and low-carb-loving waist! Crunchy, colorful and addictive…I could easily eat this salad once a week, because it’s that good!
This is a close version of Pinch of Yum’s recipe. Lindsay’s Pinch of Yum is one of my top ten food blogs–she obviously loves Asian-inspired recipes like I do, and every recipe of hers that I’ve tried is fabuluso! But back to the feature on this blog today: Kale Salad with Thai Lime Chili Nuts.
Chopped Ingredients for the Base.
For the base of the salad, I used kale, multi-colored carrots, edamame beans, Trader Joe’s Thai Chili & Lime almonds, cilantro, and a slightly spicy banana pepper. Except for the cilantro, you can see that all of the ingredients are chopped. Chopped fresh ingredients in this Thai-inspired salad create a texture and crunch that can’t be matched. Your chopping job will be made way easier if you’ll use your food processor slicing blade, like this one that I have. Obviously, you can also do all the chopping by hand, but it will take a bit longer.
Thai Lime & Chili Nuts.
I used Trader Joe’s Thai Lime & Chili Almonds for this recipe, but Trader Joe’s Thai Lime & Chili Peanuts or Cashews would work also. If you don’t have easy access to a Trader Joe’s, then try making your own Thai-flavored nuts with recipes like this one or this one. Just remember, there’s a reason for the title of this post (“Kale Salad with Thai Lime Chili Nuts”): those nuts sprinkled throughout this salad are the bomb!
To keep this salad colorful, I slivered gold, red, and and orange carrots, which I also purchased at Trader Joe’s. I love these carrots, by the way–they’re a little spicier and more robust than the regular ol’ orange carrots seen everywhere.
Massage Your Kale.
Also, before you chop the kale for the salad, gently rub and massage the kale leaves to help tenderize them. No, I’m not kidding. I read a recommendation to do this recently, so I tried it, and I’m here to tell you that massaging your kale leaves will honest-to-goodness makes them noticeably more tender and enjoyable in salads.
The Sesame Ginger Garlic Dressing.
I was totally wowed by how the sesame ginger garlic dressing, with its bright, tangy, and umami flavors complemented the chopped salad base ingredients, and totally put this heck of a Thai-inspired salad over the top.
Another bonus? This Kale Salad with Thai Lime Chili Nuts suits my low-carb diet plan just fine. The recipe below is for one large salad, or two smaller salads. I had some dressing left over, which I just refrigerated for later use. You can easily double or even triple the below recipe if you’re planning to serve more than one or two people.
Here’s the printable recipe:
- For the dressing:
- ⅓rd cup canola oil
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled
- 3 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
- 2 tablespoons honey (or 1 tablespoon honey and 1 tablespoon Stevia,or other sugar substitute
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
- ½ ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
- For the salad:
- ½ cup frozen shelled edamame beans
- 2 generous cups kale, leaves massaged
- 1 and ½ small carrots (I used numerous colors)
- 1 banana pepper (or 1 small bell pepper)
- ½ cup lightly packed cilantro leaves
- ¼th cup almonds or cashews (if you can find them, Trader Joe's Thai Lime and Chili Almonds or Cashews are perfection!)
- Cook the edamame beans by microwaving until just done, or by boiling them for 3 minutes in a pot of boiling water. Drain and allow to cool.
- Meanwhile, puree all the dressing ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Taste and adjust to fit your preferences. Transfer to a dressing jar.
- Rinse out and dry the food processor, and then fit with the slicing blade. Slice up the kale, carrots, pepper, endamame beans, and nuts into thin strips or shreds. Instead of the slicing blade for the endamame and nuts, you can use the food processor chopping blade: pulse the endamame about 5 times to get a minced texture and then transfer to a bowl. Then repeat the same process for the nuts.
- Toss the kale, carrots, peppers, cilantro, green onions, edamame, and nuts together until well combined. Drizzle generously with up to ⅓rd cup of the dressing, toss gently a few times, and serve immediately.
Please note that I received no samples, payments, or financial incentives from Trader Joe’s, Cuisinart, or Amazon, their affiliates or any other person or entity for comments or links in this article.