Crispy Chickpea Kale Salad is so fresh, crunchy, delicious and seriously addictive. It is one of my favourite creations because it is a great way to turn kale skeptics into kale lovers. The textures in this kale salad are awesome – from the creamy salad dressing and avocado to the crispy crunchy chickpeas and seeds.
I’m sure you have heard a lot about kale lately and you are probably wondering why it’s so good. It is a wonderful veggie because it is a rich source of antioxidants, including Vitamin C and A, which lower the risk of of cancer. Vitamin A is great for vision and vitamin C supports the immune system. Kale contains carotenoids that act like sunglasses by filtering UV light and preventing damage to the eyes (Mateljan, 2007). Kale is also suspected to have anti-inflammatory properties because of its high Omega-3 and Vitamin K content. Kale is a great detoxifier due to the isothiocyanates (ITCs) made from kale’s glucosinolates which have been shown to help regulate detox activities in our cells (WHFoods).
Don’t be scared away by the long ingredient list; this kale salad is really easy to make and is very adaptable to what you have in your pantry. First preheat your oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or use a silpat.
Drain, rinse and pat the chickpeas dry (the drier they are, the crispier they will get). Mix them in a large bowl with 3 Tbsp sesame seeds, 3 Tbsp sunflower seeds, 3 Tbsp pumpkin seeds, 3 Tbsp melted coconut oil, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp garlic powder, ½ tsp coriander, ½ tsp pepper, ½ tsp paprika, ¼ tsp turmeric and ¼ tsp cayenne pepper.
Spread the chickpea and seeds mixture on the baking sheet and cook for 40min, stirring every 10min. The smaller seed will get quite dark; just make sure they don’t burn.
While the chickpeas are getting crispy, wash the kale, remove the stems and tear or chop it into bite size pieces. It is important to remove the stems because they are very tough, I like to save them for juicing.
To make the kale salad dressing, place the cashews and garlic in a food processor and pulse until minced. Alternatively, if you want to make this dressing nut free, substitute the cashews for sesame seeds. Add the remaining dressing ingredients and blend until smooth. The dressing will be much thicker than regular salad dressing.
In a large bowl massage the dressing into the kale. I like to do this with my hands because its fun and it really is the best way to make sure the dressing is evenly distributed. I’m also obsessed with this dressing so I love licking it off my fingers!
If you are bringing this kale salad to a potluck, stop here. The kale can be stored sealed in the fridge and the crispy chickpea mixture can be stored in an air tight container at room temperature. When you are ready to enjoy the salad, top with the diced avocado and sprinkle with the crispy chickpea seed mixture.
Prep time: 20min
Cook time: 40min
Serving size: 4 large sides
- 1 can chickpeas, drained, rinsed and patted dry
- 3 Tbsp sesame seeds
- 3 Tbsp sunflower seeds
- 3 Tbsp pumpkin seeds
- 3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp coriander, whole
- ½ tsp pepper
- ½ tsp paprika
- ¼ tsp turmeric
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 large head kale, stems removed and chopped/torn into bit sized pieces
- 2 avocados, diced
- ¾ cups raw cashews or ¾cup sesame seeds for a nut free version
- 2 garlic cloves
- ¾ cup tahini
- 2 tsp white miso paste
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- Juice of ¼ a lemon (1 Tbsp)
- 2 tsp nutritional yeast
- 3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
- ½ cup water
- 2 tsp tamari
- 1 tsp pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat.
- In a large bowl mix the chickpeas, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, 3 Tbsp melted coconut oil, cumin, garlic powder, coriander, pepper, paprika, turmeric and cayenne pepper. Spread out on the baking sheet and cook for 40min, stirring every 10min.
- Place the cashews (or sesame seeds) and garlic in a food processor and pulse until minced. Add the remaining dressing ingredients and blend until smooth. The dressing will be much thicker than regular salad dressing.
- In a large bowl massage dressing into the kale. Top with the avocado and sprinkle with the crispy chickpea and seed mixture.