It’s no secret that California likes their salads. We have vegan restaurants, microbiotic cafes or gluten-free pizza joints almost everywhere you turn. We see words like “free-range” or “organic” in front of all our favorite ingredients and we don’t even blink an eye. We are all about putting healthy ingredients into our bodies.
I’m not quite sure when Kale Caesar Salads started becoming popular but I keep seeing them pop up on menus all over Los Angeles. When I tried my first one, I quickly understood why. They are delightful! The Crunchy, bittery taste of the kale paired with salty parmesan and creamy Caesar Dressing – it’s a wonderful fusion of flavors.
This Kale Caesar Salad recipe has quickly become a favorite in my recipe box. Inspired by a recipe by Kelley Epstein over at Mountain Mama Cooks. I love the idea of replacing crunchy croutons with crispy garbanzo beans to give you that familiar crunch. However, this version is packed with fiber and protein which is a plus for vegetarians who are looking for protein alternatives. Although, you could easily add grilled chicken, shrimp or salmon to this dish and it would be equally tasty.
Kale Caesar Salad w/ Crispy Garbanzo "Croutons"
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
For the Dressing:
- 1 garlic clove
- ½ cup mayonnaise (or vegan mayonnaise)
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 3 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp worcestershire sauce
- ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 3-4 tbsp olive oil
- 1-2 tsp of water to thin if necessary
- salt and pepper to taste
For Garbanzo Beans:
- 1 15oz can garbanzo beans
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 head of kale (stems removed and chopped)
- ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
- ½ cup julienne sundried tomatoes
- Caesar Dressing
- Crispy Garbanzo Beans
- Preheat the oven to 375F degrees.
- Rinse and drain the garbanzo beans. Then lay them on a double layer of paper towels and dry them as much as you can. Line the dried garbanzo beans on a baking sheet and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Roast the garbanzo beans for 35-40 minutes until brown and crispy.
While the garbanzos are roasting, make the dressing:
- Combine all ingredients except oil, salt and pepper in the base of a blender.
- With the motor running, slowly add the oil in a thin stream into the blender.
- When the dressing is thoroughly mixed, test for desired thickness. If you want it a little thinner, add the water a teaspoon at a time.
- Season with salt and pepper.
To Assemble Salad:
- Clean the kale and remove the leaves from the thick inner stalk.
- Chop the kale and transfer to a large bowl.
- Dress with desired amount of Caesar dressing and grated parmesan cheese.
- Top with sun-dried tomatoes crispy garbanzo beans.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Lindsay Vacek has a passion for style, details and design. As a Fashion Editorial Photographer, she's worked in the Entertainment Industry for over 10 years and has a love for adventure and travel. She spends her spare time globe-trotting her way through foreign countries and loves new cultures, food, music, and arts.
Being a California Native, Lindsay loves meeting new people and sharing her version of life with others. With an infinite list of things-to-do, places to go and sights to see - she believe everyone can have a little more California in their own lives.