Salad Challenge: Cucumber Dill Kale Salad

This weeks’ salad challenge posts: Introduction, Sweet + Creamy Broccoli Salad, Green Goddessphere at Sea, and Spinach Salad with Tomato Vinaigrette

I never was big into kale. I remember making a salad with it many years ago – replacing romaine for a bunch of kale in a Caesar salad and nearly died. It was so dry and tasteless.

Fast forward a couple of years and I’ve slowly learned that kale doesn’t have to be a complete write off, it’s just sensitive to preparation and ingredients.

Prepare it right, and you have a delicious pilaf, or plate of chips before you.

Prepare it wrong, and it becomes a great snack for your furry friends.

The meal that made me turn a new leaf (har-har) toward my thoughts on kale, was when my friend Emily ordered a portabella flatbread, during one of our monthly get-togethers.

The flatbread looked and smelled amazing, and was loaded with kale.

After dinner I asked her to guess what ingredients were used so I could make it for myself when I got home.

Of all the pizzas I’ve ever made, this Portabella Flatbread with Walnut “Cheese” gets me every time. And look at all that kale on there :D

Cucumber Dill Kale Salad

Vegan, Gluten free, Dairy free, Refined sugar-free, Yeast free, Corn free, Grain free

A low-fat tangy dill dressing smothers the kale and cucumber in this light and delicious salad.

Yield: ~4 cups

Servings: 4


  • 1 cup cooked black beans
  • 1/2 cup tangy dill dressing
  • 2 bunches of kale – yield 4 cups
  • 1/2 English cucumber, sliced with a vegetable peeler
  • 1 whole carrot, diced
  • 4 green onions, diced


  1. Rip kale into bite-sized pieces and steam for 45-60 seconds, just to soften. Drain if needed, and place in a large bowl.
  2. Add remaining prepped salad ingredients and stir to coat.
  3. Store leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container for 1-2 days. The kale gets a bit wilted at the two day mark, but makes a great filling for sandwiches, wraps, or a topping to scrambled eggs!

View nutrition facts

Also, did you know that kale has some pretty powerful cholesterol lowering benefits?

And, that in order to unlock the full potential of this leafy green, it’s better to enjoy it lightly steamed?

The fiber in kale has an easier time doing it’s job of binding to the enzymes and acids in your digestive tract when it’s been steamed than when it’s in it’s raw form. Kale will still have cholesterol lowering ability when it’s raw, just not as much. Plus, steaming the kale is easier on our digestion meaning we can eat more of it, without worrying about tummy pains!

Sounds good to me!

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Comments | Leave Your Comment

  1. Oh wow, it’s like we share a brain (I think I’ve even said this before!) because yesterday I made a salad that contained kale, and I steamed it for a minute or so specifically because 1) it tastes so much better that way and 2) it maximizes the availability of the nutrients in our bodies. Great minds think alike! Oh and PS. is that an almond placemat you have? I LOVE it!

    • Yes, steamed kale is the way to go! That placemat is actually straw, but looking at it now, it totally looks like almonds! How cool :)

  2. yes, that portobello pizza looks fantastic! reminds me of the portobello carpaccio I had on NYE… mmm, I need to recreate that one!

    “more for your furry friends” – ha! I know this. thankfully, Basil isn’t picky. ;)

    this salad sounds SO good – I love dill.

    • It’s great having a dog, isn’t it? They both get so many healthy treats!

    • I haven’t had kale chips in forever. Need to get on that, pronto. What kinda chips are you making?

  3. I made a pizza very similar to that one a couple of nights ago, in *another* effort to make myself like mushrooms, but sadly, it didn’t work :( I have the same issue with kale! I’m going to buy some next time I’m at the grocery store, because I think steaming it may help? Wish my dog liked greens like that! :)

    • Oh no! I went through a ‘hating mushroom stage’, too. I don’t know what changed, but I cannot get enough of them! I’m sure the pizza would be just as good without it. Steamed vs. raw kale is like night and day for me. It’s SO much better, I think you’ll like it :)

  4. I’m really enjoying these salad ideas, thanks so much for sharing them. I’ve only made the Broccoli salad so far and it was amazing. Now I just have to wait until I can get to a store again so I can get the ingredients for this salad. Thanks again

  5. Out of all the salads you’ve done this week, this one I’m sure will be a favorite as it has two of my favorite veggies: cucumber and kale!

    I’ll have to try that steaming trick the next time I have fresh kale – it’s a challenge to eat a purely raw kale salad! ;)

  6. I will take one flatbread pizza please. And a salad. I will sit here and wait until I receive it….
    Still waiting.

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