Raw Kale Salad with Root Vegetables Recipe | Vegetarian Times Skip to main content

Raw Kale Salad with Root Vegetables

Tender, long-leafed Lacinato kale works especially well in this recipe, but any variety will do if it's cut very thin and given a thorough rubdown with salt, vinegar, and oil. The grated root vegetables and maple-glazed pecans add just the right crunchiness.


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2 12-oz. bunches kale, stems removed, leaves cut into thin strips or chiffonade
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2 Tbs. olive oil
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1 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
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1 ½ tsp. salt, divided
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1 cup whole pecans
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¼ cup pure maple syrup
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2 Tbs. canola oil
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¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
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1 medium turnip, peeled and grated (1 cup)
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½ medium rutabaga, peeled and grated (1 cup)
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1 medium carrot, grated (½ cup)
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2 green onions, cut thin on diagonal

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2 Tbs. lemon juice
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1 Tbs. grated lemon zest
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1 Tbs. olive oil
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1 Tbs. low-sodium soy sauce
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2 tsp. agave nectar


1. To make Salad: Place kale in large bowl, and pour olive oil, vinegar, and 1 tsp. salt over top. Gently massage mixture into kale about 2 to 3 minutes by hand, or until kale starts to wilt. Let rest 30 minutes.

2. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss together pecans, maple syrup, canola oil, remaining ½ tsp. salt, and cayenne in medium bowl. Spread nut mixture in single layer on prepared baking sheet; bake 8 to 10 minutes, or until pecans are brown and fragrant, stirring frequently. Cool in pan.

3. To make Dressing: Whisk together lemon juice, lemon zest, oil, soy sauce, and agave nectar in bowl. Season with salt and pepper, if desired.

4. Stir turnip, rutabaga, carrot, and green onions into kale mixture. Toss with Dressing. Garnish with pecans.

Nutrition Information: 

5 g
Total Fat: 
24 g
Saturated Fat: 
2 g
27 g
0 mg
732 mg
5 g
14 g
Serves 6

Comments on this Recipe

I agree this salad is the best. All the flavors are great together. I will keep this as a staple in the house.

This is a really good fall salad that I will do again. I did not have any green onions so I chopped one very small onion instead (about 2 tbs.) Also, I found that I could make many more pecans with the same maple "mixture".

I made this salad last weekend and loved it! I substituted roasted acorn squash and beets for the turnip and rutabaga (just because I had them on hand), and it was delicious. It has a wonderfully complex combination of flavors and textures. I decided to make this again for our Thanksgiving meal.

this was a complete success on thanksgiving dinner!!

This is, by far, the best salad ever!!! It's a LOT of work, but I've made it so many times, I move pretty fast at it now. The flavors are so alive,zesty and fresh. Raw kale chopped into a chiffonade makes for a lovely texture and appearance. I cut the oil in half for the nuts and it was still fabulous. I too used more nuts for the same maple mixture. With a salad with so many elements, it's a good thing to make the nuts in bulk and store the rest for another time, or another salad. It's a great winter festive meal addition!

Agree with Jodi, lots of work but well worth it!

i have made it so many times since I found the recipe, and it is always a little different. I use honey, and whatever salad veggies I have on hand. The whole family asks for it every week.

Absolutely scrumptious. We have a nut-allergy so instead of the walnuts, we dry roasted a handful of pumpkin seeds. Also, grated an apple into the salad!

Love it! I found that the salad can get a little salty, so I rinse the kale after it has finished wilting, and dry it in a salad spinner to get out the excess water. The lemon zest makes for a delicious and surprising dressing!

This salad is fab, fab, and FAB!! I've made it so many times for get-togethers, dinners, etc. It always gets rave reviews and someone always asks for the recipe!! I wouldn't change anything in this salad, it's perfect just the way it is!! Thank you for such a wonderful, healthy salad!!!

So yummy! So nutritious! What's not to love?


I could eat the nuts alone! But what a wonderfully yummy salad. Kale is my new favorite green for raw salads... Try the VT salad with kale and tahini dressing!

A friend shared this recipe with me... It has such an amazing combination of flavors. I feel sad for those who don't explore the alternatives to the mundane day to day salads they eat! I agree with Kelley... I could eat the nuts alone as a snack!

Made this for dinner. Fabulous! Flavors were good. Textures were perfect. A bit of time involved, making dressing, roasting nuts, and preparing kale, but all worth it. Will make again soon!

all the recipes look delicious I can't wait to be king receiving my recipes by way of email

This salad will become a regular dish at home. It was so tasty and full of surprise. It has great colors!


I made this for Thanksgiving and it was a HUGE hit. I will definitely make it again, and again, and again.

The kale salad is a wonderful, delicious dish... I have also prepared it with granny smith apples instead of the root veggies - it was also very tasty!!!!! Definitely a regular at my house now....

I will try these salads. Thank you.

Wow! This could have been really good if my kale wasn't so tough! Maybe I needed to massage it longer... The fancier types of kale might work better here. Probably would have enjoyed the added root veggies and onion if the kale wasn't so overpowering...and the dressing is so delicious! Nuts were good. I did eat them separately as a snack since I don't like sweet nuts in salads. Seems like some of the measuring could have been off, but maybe I had an oversized rutabaga and undersized carrot. I halved the recipe and there was more than enough salad to feed a large family. I didn't half the dressing...made the full amount and it didn't seem like it would be enough for the salad.

I've tried this salad a few times and it is great! The recipe is precise and the coated pecans add a delectable addition.

Yummy - used very young tender curly kale, a large bunch and thinly sliced red onion......my husband requested a repeat this week as kale was on special. We love savoy cabbage slaw and this recipe has such great flavours - a company dish for sure.

I have made this for two public events and am still being asked to share the recipe. Every time I am happy to refer them to this web page as a way to introduce VT magazine.

Kale salad

Thought this was really yummy. I was a little surprised by how lemony it tasted. Definitely does not need as much salt. I'd knock the salt back a bit, maybe a 1/2 tsp. I loved the pecans. I would add another 1/4- 1/2 cup of pecans to the maple syrup mixture as there was plenty. My biggest suggestion is to get the pecans off the parchment paper sooner rather than later. Mine stuck to it and I spent more time than I would have liked peeling paper off my pecans. Will make again!

It was a super hit for a christmas party. Everyone were surprised to see that it was a tasty kale salad. I would go with more pecans too. and taking the nuts off the pan was a challenge, might want to cook it for a less time. Overall it was yummy!

A hit for our new years eve dinner. Saved a little time by buying spicy & sweet pecans, but followed the recipe pretty closely otherwise. Will make again!


This is pretty, a good dish to serve for guests. But for me the dressing was a little sweet - I will leave off the agave nectar next time.

8-10 minutes on 375 is way too long and too high for the pecans