Tuscan Raw Kale Salad

In Salads

Tuscan Raw Kale Salad

We were excited to hear the positive response to kale from our recipe for mashed potatoes with kale. Looks like the word is out on the nutritional benefits of this super food!

Your comments made us recall this salad we made last season with raw – yes, raw kale. It might sound a bit strange, but with a delicious Tuscan-style dressing of lemon, Pecorino cheese, and garlic, the bitter taste of the kale is mellowed and melds beautifully with the other flavors. Plus, the sturdy texture of the kale holds up well in a salad, and provides an extra crunch when eating.

We’ve revamped the recipe and photo, which stars some green and purple kale from Big City Farms we found at the Indy Winter Farmer’s Market. We’ve had this salad with several guests and it’s received rave reviews. Who knew that eating raw kale could taste so good?

Check out your local markets for some greens! (See below for tips on buying the kale for this salad.)

Some other recipes with kale:

Spicy Kale Lasagna
Kale and Artichoke Frittata
Mashed Potatoes with Kale and Garlic
Garlic and Kale Soup – one of our favorites
Kale, Sweet Potato, and Chickpea Stew – a close second


Tuscan Raw Kale Salad

0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5 (0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5)
You need to be a registered member to rate this.

  • Author: a Couple Cooks
  • Yield: 4


For the kale, look for either younger kale (available at most farmers markets) or broad leaf kale. We recommend not using curly kale here, since its spicy bitterness can be a bit overpowering. Give it a nibble before you buy to make sure it is not overly spicy. We generally never dress all our salad greens at once since it ruins any next-day leftovers, but kale is one case where you can! Since kale is so sturdy, the dressed greens were great even on the second day.


  • 2 large bunches of young kale (see notes above; we used one green and one purple)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 lemon (1/4 cup juice)
  • 1/4 cup Pecorino cheese (or substitute Parmesan cheese)
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Fresh ground black pepper


  1. Wash and dry the kale. Remove and discard the tough parts of the stems, and chop them into bite-sized pieces.
  2. Grind 1 clove garlic and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a mortar and pestle until it becomes a paste (or mince it using a knife and flatten it into a paste using the blade). Add 3 tablespoons olive oil, 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, 1/4 cup Pecorino cheese, 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes, and fresh ground black pepper, and mix to combine.
  3. Toss the dressing with the kale leaves and let sit for 5 minutes. Serve topped with additional grated cheese. If desired, add homemade croutons.


Adapted from 101 Cookbooks


You Might Also Like


  • Reply
    November 28, 2011 at 11:03 am

    This is a recipe that even an unseasoned cook like me can make! Thank you!

  • Reply
    November 28, 2011 at 11:06 am

    No way, I’m going to post a similar recipe soon, too! I can see some similar vibes here, eheh! :) I had a Tuscan kale day yesterday, cooking different recipes with cavolo nero, and loved it and its versatility in the kitchen!

  • Reply
    November 28, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Another fabulous kale recipe. You guys are on a roll, one that I LOVE!

  • Leave a Reply