Kale Caesar Salad with Chickpea Croutons + Meal Prep

It might sound cliche, but kale is a favorite in our household. Brian is good with it in smoothies, I love it massaged in a salad, and it is delightful when roasted and a little crispy.


The options with kale are endless and with it being a leafy green cruciferous veggie that has a list of beneficial health properties that's a mile long, it's kinda the perfect food.


This week I prepped ingredients for a kale Caesar salad that I could enjoy all week. Kale is so hearty, it can keep in the fridge for longer than other greens. I prepped ingredients for a grain and veggie bowl with an avocado dressing that is now Brian's favorite, and got everything ready for a mid-week meal I can throw together.


Here's the prep for the Kale Caesar Salad~


When using kale in a salad, it's best to massage the kale first. It is a tough green and can be unpleasant to eat just as is. It likes to be massaged. Taking your washed, de-stemmed, and chopped kale, drizzle it with a 1/2 teaspoon of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt. Using your hands, massage the salt and oil into the kale, squishing it into your hands. It will become a bit softer, greener, and a little wet. This is good! Continue for about 2-3 minutes or until tender. Top with Healthy Caesar Dressing and Roasted Chickpeas (recipes below).



Here's what I did to prep this week~

  • Washed, trimmed (cut out the stem), chopped, and massaged a large bunch of kale.

  • Roasted chickpeas- recipe here!

  • Made Healthy Caesar dressing, recipe below.

  • Roasted beets and a variety of peppers.

  • Made a large pot of quinoa.

  • Rinsed black beans.

  • Made Jalapeño-Avocado Dressing, recipe below.

  • Roasted a whole chicken.

  • Prepped butternut squash, cabbage, onion, and garlic for a mid-week soup.



These are the meals I can put together~

  • Caesar salad with kale and roasted chickpeas. Could add chicken or quinoa.

  • Quinoa, beans, roasted veggie bowl with Jalapeño-Avocado dressing. Could top this with chicken or swap out black beans for roasted chickpeas.

  • Salad with Jalapeño-Avocado dressing, chicken, and quinoa.

  • Squash soup mid-week.



Recipes



Healthy Caesar Dressing- Makes about 2 cups

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup of olive oil

  • Juice of 2 lemons

  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds

  • 1/2 cup hemp seeds

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

  • 2 tablespoons raw sauerkraut

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill

  • 1/4-1/3 cup water to reach desired consistency

  • Salt and pepper to taste, start with about 1/2 teaspoon each

  • 1 chopped green onion

Directions

  1. Combine all ingredients except the green onion in a blender and blend until smooth. Add more water if you want it runnier and blend some more.

  2. Add green onion and blend for 5 seconds, just until mixed in.

Stays best in a jar with a lid in the fridge up to 4 days.




Jalapeño-Avocado Dressing- Makes about 2 cups

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch of cilantro

  • 2 cloves of garlic

  • Juice of 2 limes

  • 1/2 a jalapeno, seeds removed

  • 1 tablespoon coconut aminos

  • 1 avocado

  • 1 green onion, both green and white parts, chopped

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • 1/3-1/2 cup water

Directions

  1. Combine all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Add more water if you want it runnier or more salt and pepper as needed.

Stays best in a jar with a lid in the fridge up to 3 days.

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