Grilled Kale Avocado Salad.

Now this is what I call a SALAD.

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I’ve hit that point in my pregnancy where I’m really into SALADS. Yes. All caps necessary.

How weird. Right? I mean, do people normally get into salads while pregnant?

I’m into this grilled kale avocado salad like no other. IN TO IT. 

MY OTHER RECIPES


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At the beginning, I told you about one of my most embarrassing cravings which was basically a Pittsburghese salad of iceberg and lettuce and topped with tons of cheese and fries and vinegary dressing. I ended up having it once and wanting to die mid-way through. THANK GOODNESS THAT IS GONE.

Now I’ve moved onto more sophisticated things like this. Where everything is grilled and crunchy and oh-so perfect. !!!! (At least for now.)

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I’ve been in love with grilled romaine salads for years. Years! The smoky flavor that the grill gives… oh it’s just so good. So I did the same with kale. It only needs a minute or so on the grill and you get a whole boatload of taste. Completely worth it.

And!

Our dressing here is a creamy avocado one. Which is so unlike me! Creamy dressings aren’t my thing. I liiiiive for oil and vinegar. In fact, you know that I’m such a vinegar freak, I could drizzle my salads with vinegar alone and be thrilled.

But the creamy avocado dressing with the grilled kale… oh yes. I have no words. It’s smoky and cooling and refreshing and the best ever. Why do I have no words today? Just lots of exclamation points.

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The avocados ON the salad also made their way to the grill! Yesssss.

The chickpeas are crispy and roasted in the oven. If it’s a still a million degrees when you make this salad, feel free to leave your chickpeas unroasted so you don’t have to turn on your oven. But!

The best part, really, are the garlicky, crunchy breadcrumbs. Oooooh they add so much flavor and texture and you’re just like, WHAT is that. Basically this salad is the brainchild of my texture loving palate. Lots of crunch.

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Now yes… there are a lot of moving parts to this salad. Grilling the kale, making the dressing, the breadcrumbs and the chickpeas. It’s a leeeettle bit high maintenance and you can totally leave one part out if you’d like.

But if you have the time and the appetite – go for it!

Then we can just eat it and be besties.

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Grilled Kale Avocado Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 head curly green kale
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper for sprinkling
  • 1 avocado, sliced in half
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

creamy avocado dressing

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1/3 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup olive oil

brown butter garlic breadcrumbs

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup torn crusty bread pieces
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

crispy chickpeas

  • 2 cups cooked chickpeas (if canned, drain and rinse)
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons olive oil, or olive oil spray/mist
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

Directions:

Preheat your grill to the highest setting. Drizzle the kale with a tablespoon of the olive oil and massage it into the leaves. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Drizzle the avocado with the other tablespoon of olive oil and sprinkle with the salt and pepper.

Place the kale pieces on the grill along with the avocados, cut side down. Grill both for 1 to 2 minutes, until the lettuce becomes charred, then flip over for an additional minute. Grill the avocado just until grill marks appear.

Remove both from the grill. Tear the kale leaves from the stems and toss them with the avocado dressing - as much or as little as you'd like! Slice the grilled avocado and add it on top. Cover with the cherry tomatoes, chickpeas, breadcrumbs and more dressing if you'd like.

creamy avocado dressing

Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender and puree until smooth.

brown butter garlic breadcrumbs

Add the butter and olive oil to the saucepan. Once melted, add bread pieces and stir well to coat and combine. Sprinkle with garlic powder and salt. Stir constantly over medium-low heat until the crumbs are golden and toasty.

crispy chickpeas

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Place chickpeas on a paper towel and pay completely dry. Remove any loose skins.

Place on a baking sheet and mist with olive oil or oil of choice. Roll around to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Make sure chickpeas are in a single layer. Bake for 15 minutes, toss well and flip, then bake for about 15 minutes more. Let cool before using.

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And it’s so GREEN!