Thursday, January 7, 2016

Vegetarian Kale Taco Salad

We're off to a pretty super 2016 -- a little Rose Bowl parade, a little collards and blackeyed peas with the extended fam, and a whole lotta simple QT with my favorite peeps.  

The kidlets went back to school yesterday, and, while I think we were all ready for a return to Capital-R Routine, I missed my little side-kicks as I was de-Christmas-ifying the house and just generally getting my shit in order. 

Speaking of getting shit in order, here's an easy-peasy "recipe" {if you can call it that} that is resolution-friendly on your waistline, a pantry/fridge clean-out catalyst, and comes together in a jiffy. 

Vegetarian Kale Taco Salad 

Note: The sky's the limit with this salad as far as adaptations go. Use whatever veggies you happen to have languishing in your fridge, feel free to make a bean substitution {kidney, garbanzo, pinto, etc}, add taco meat made with ground turkey or beef, etc.  

- box of baby kale {or 5 oz of your favorite kale variety}
- 2 glugs of EVOO
- heavy sprinkling of coarse sea salt
- 2 zucchini squash; halved, then sliced into thin rounds
- 10 mini tri-colored sweet peppers {or 1-2 red, orange, or yellow bell peppers}; stems removed, seeded, then sliced into thin strips
- half pint of cherry tomatoes; halved
- can of black beans; rinsed {I like Whole Foods' brand organic "spicy" variety}
- half a packet of your favorite taco seasoning {about 1-2 T}
- 1 cup sharp white cheddar; grated
- a couple handfuls of blue corn tortilla chips; crumbled

Place kale into serving bowl and drizzle EVOO on top.  Imagine kale is a love-lorn Joseph Gordon-Levitt and gently massage with clean hands for a few hot minutes. Sprinkle in sea salt and give the bowl another quick rub-down.  Set aside and let rest while you prepare the toppings.  Do not offer it cucumber water -- it's been pampered enough for the moment. 

Spritz a large skillet with EVOO.  Over Medium heat. saute zucchini and peppers until they begin to brown around the edges.  Adding just a splash of water, turn the heat down to Low, and steam with a tightly fitting lid for 5 or so minutes.  Then toss in the black beans, tomatoes, and taco seasoning -- stirring to combine.  If the mixture seems a bit dry and the seasoning isn't evenly coating, add another splash of water {veggies + beans should not be soupy}.  Once mixture is heated through, transfer to the awaiting bed of {very relaxed} kale. Sprinkle cheese and tortilla chips on top and give the whole shebang a big toss. 

Stuff yo' face. 

{serves 2-4}


  1. Have y'all gone full-on vegetarian? Or occasionally eating meat? Love the pj super heroes!

    1. Our household currently has a "it's complicated" relationship with meat. E no longer eats any red meat and would be fine being an official vegetarian (maybe with fish on occasion). I find full-on veggie to be a little too restrictive in the kitchen, especially in the "quick and healthy" category, so we still eat chicken or turkey or fish once or twice a week. And I am not at all opposed to a hamburger or filet or slab of BBQ brisket when we are out!

  2. YUM. Kitchen confession - I've yet to dive into kale. The de-stemming, the massaging, the concerns it tastes like grass. I've been apprehensive. Time to jump in and do it. This baby kale looks like good gateway kale. The pot of the kale world perhaps? I'll stop myself before I make any SAT pot/kale analogies.

    1. Oh baby kale is most definitely the gateway pot of the kale conglomerate. I'm not even sure if it needs to be massaged...I just love having the EVOO spread so uniformly on the leaves since there's no real "dressing" here! But, ANYHOO, dive in! If you can do collards or chard, you shouldn't be afraid of big dinosaur kale, either!

  3. This looks good! A friend was telling me about a Thai Kale Salad with Peanut dressing. I am going to attempt, but seriously, Kale makes me nervous. We have that baby stroller too and it has seen many a mile!!


happy little comments!