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This kale tahini salad is not your average kale salad. Curly kale leaves, crisp apple, and crunchy almonds are tossed in a creamy tahini dressing. It's super healthy and delicious, and it takes just 15 minutes to make!
You don't need to be a huge fan of raw kale to fall in love with this creamy kale tahini salad. The sweet and creamy tahini dressing will win you over, full stop.
This salad really is all about the savory-sweet dressing. It's a delicious mix of tahini, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, miso, and garlic all whisked together until creamy.
With fresh sliced apples in the salad and maple syrup in the dressing, it's a salad that feels a bit like fall. It's perfect for fall dinner parties, or even on the Thanksgiving table.
Unlike other leafy salads, kale salad leftovers actually taste great the next day. Make it for dinner, eat it the next day for lunch. We call that a win!
Kale tahini salad ingredients
Here's everything you'll need for the creamy tahini dressing:
- Tahini – tahini is a paste made from ground sesame seeds and is a staple in Middle-Eastern cuisine. It's the base of this creamy nutty dressing.
- Apple cider vinegar – to add brightness and a bit of acidity. You could also use fresh lemon juice if you prefer.
- Maple syrup – the sweet, rich taste of maple balances out the other flavors.
- Miso – miso is a Japanese fermented paste made from soybeans. This unlikely ingredient adds lots of savory flavor to this dressing, and creaminess, too.
- Garlic – just one small clove, for a bit of garlicky taste and subtle kick.
- Cayenne – optional, for a bit of heat.
- Hot water – this dressing is quite thick without water, so it helps to thin things out.
Here's what you'll need for the kale salad:
- Kale – we use curly green kale for this recipe, but you can use other varieties like lacinato (or black kale), red kale, or baby kale.
- Slivered almonds – the texture of slivered almonds is a nice addition to this salad but you can use chopped almonds, or sub for walnuts or pumpkin seeds if you prefer.
- Alfalfa sprouts – these add a nice crunch and nutritional boost.
- Toasted sesame seeds – for a bit of crunch and visual pop.
- Red apple – we like the sweet taste and bright red color of a red apple, but any apple will do.
How to make this kale tahini salad
This kale salad is perfect as a light lunch or side salad, and you can enjoy the leftovers for lunch the next day. Here's how we make it in a few simple steps:
- To make the creamy kale salad dressing, add all the dressing ingredients to a small bowl with water and whisk until smooth and creamy. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- In a large bowl, assemble the salad. Add all the salad ingredients and drizzle with the dressing to coat. We actually like to get in there and use our hands to coat all the nooks and crannies of the kale leaves. It's a bit messy but totally worth it!
What goes well with creamy kale tahini salad
This creamy kale salad with tahini dressing is a delicious way to get your greens. It's a substantial salad so it's perfect as a light lunch with some roasted chickpeas. Or serve it alongside protein mains to complete your meal.
Healthy main meals that pair well with kale tahini salad
How long does kale salad keep in the fridge?
This tahini kale salad is pretty hardy. Store it in the fridge in a sealed container for 1-2 days.
What's the best kind of kale to use?
We like to use curly kale but any kale will work so use your favorite variety, or what looks most fresh!
Where do I buy miso paste?
Look for miso paste at Asian markets or with other condiments in the refrigerated section of your grocery store.
Maple Tahini Dressing
- ¼ cup tahini
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons EACH: maple syrup and miso
- 1 small garlic clove (grated on a Microplane or very finely minced)
- A pinch of cayenne
- 3-4 tablespoons hot tap water
- Salt and pepper (to taste)
- 6 cups kale (torn into bite-sized pieces)
- ½ cup slivered almonds
- A few small handfuls of alfalfa sprouts
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
- 1 red apple (cored and sliced)
- In a small bowl, whisk the tahini, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, miso, garlic, and cayenne. Add 3-4 tablespoons of hot water, to thin. Season to taste with sea salt and black pepper.¼ cup tahini, 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, 2 tablespoons EACH: maple syrup and miso, 1 small garlic clove, A pinch of cayenne
- Combine all the salad ingredients in a large bowl, drizzle with the dressing and toss to coat.6 cups kale, ½ cup slivered almonds, A few small handfuls of alfalfa sprouts, 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds, 1 red apple
We have thoroughly tested this recipe for accuracy. However, individual results may vary. See our full recipe disclosure here.