Kale Salad Mountain

Hi friends. I’m glad you liked the Whole Foods pics! It was such a fantastic event with so much fun (I had no idea we’d be feasting the night away and was pleasantly surprised), music, wine/beer and they sent us home with killer swag bags. From bars to natural cleaning supplies, almond butter and a coffee mug, I have lots of fun new goodies to try out. I also grabbed some kale to make the best massaged kale salad.

massaged kale salad mountain with goat cheese and jalapeños

I’ve always had a deep love for kale salads, but it’s intensified ever since I had a similar version to the above salad at brunch on Sunday. I love having salad with breakfast and Ventana always has a fabulous variety set up. 

Something about this salad makes me imagine myself hiking to the top of kale mountain, wearing lederhosen and yodeling.



Kale salad mountain


Either way, I just had to share this awesome combo with ya.

Massaged Kale Salad Mountain

First, you start with washed kale, then tear the leaves of the ribs into large bite-sized pieces: 


(Use more than you think you’ll want because it’s really that delicious, and the kale will also wilt up and shrink a little.)

Squeeze with a hefty amount of lemon juice, drizzle with olive oil, and top with sea salt, garlic and pepper.

Next, using your hands, massage the mixture onto the kale, making sure to squeeze the leaves and thoroughly distribute the dressing and spices.

Kale massage

Top with crumbled goat cheese and sliced fresh jalapeño.


Massaged Kale Salad Mountain

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  • 1 bunch kale
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • jalapeno
  • goat cheese, crumbled


  1. Wash kale and rip bite-sized pieces off the tough stem.
  2. Squeeze lemon juice, drizzle on olive oil, sprinkle on sea salt, pepper and garlic to taste.
  3. Using your hands, massage the dressing into the kale, squeezing the leaves thoroughly to wilt the kale and distribute the dressing evenly.
  4. Top with crumbled goat cheese and slice jalapeños.


  • This makes a salad mountain for one or a side salad for two!


Kale salad with mini turkey meatloaf

I enjoyed mine with a few turkey lentil muffins for lunch- it was a perfectly satisfying and spicy combo. Hope you love it!



Something to think: 

Source: instagr.am via Gina on Pinterest

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  1. Lucie on January 16, 2013 at 10:48 am

    I love this quote. SO true and such a good reminder!! Ah, the salad looks so delicious and these muffins? A MUST try! I had a similar combo for lunch today, love it as you can add different things every time you prepare a salad.

  2. Alexandra on January 16, 2013 at 10:50 am

    Yumm!! Never would have thought to put jalapenos and goat cheese together but I love them both and just happen to have a fresh bunch of Kale in my refrigerator with this combos’ name on it 🙂 Ill be testing it out today for sure! Thanks Gina!

  3. Erica { EricaDHouse.com } on January 16, 2013 at 10:51 am

    I can’t believe I’m going to confess this but I have yet to try Kale still! Everyone raves about it – thanks for reminding me to pick some up next time I’m at the store 🙂

  4. Kim on January 16, 2013 at 10:55 am

    I’m with Erica – keep wanting to try Kale and still haven’t.
    And, I would have to take a tiny piece of the jalapeno and make it even smaller – like the flavor of them but I am a true spice wimp!!!

  5. Hayley @ Running on Pumpkin on January 16, 2013 at 11:04 am

    I have only ever had kale in the form of kale chips! I am not sure I would like it but I would definitely be willing to give it a try, especially with some turkey lentil muffins accompanying it. I love that Dr. Seuss quote – so true.

  6. Elizabeth M. on January 16, 2013 at 11:11 am

    I love kale, I love jalapeno, I LOVE goat cheese! (sometimes I think we are food twins because you and I LOVE all the same foods, and I have a wicked obsession with spicy goodness) I will have to try this combo 🙂

  7. Joanne @ A Nicer Choice on January 16, 2013 at 11:25 am

    I’ve only recently started eating kale regularly and I love it. I think I need to try some of your kale salads!

  8. Ali @ Peaches and Football on January 16, 2013 at 11:26 am

    You really can’t go wrong with a big leafy dark green salad. Talk about nutritional powerhouse. 🙂

  9. Lisa on January 16, 2013 at 11:30 am

    Oh gosh, this looks amazing! All around power packed with nutrition. I do love kale, but the last two times I’ve bought it I’ve found spiders in the bunch! Ick…it’s kind of turned me off for the time being! Spinach is now my go to. Dr. Suess is so wise;) Love the quote!

  10. Paige @ Your Trainer Paige on January 16, 2013 at 11:33 am

    Gosh I haven’t made a kale salad in SO long. This looks so delicious.

  11. Madison on January 16, 2013 at 11:50 am

    I agree with that quote at the end and have actually been trying to appreciate the “now” instead of looking forward to the future. It can be challenging!

  12. Sarah on January 16, 2013 at 11:55 am

    I wish I could eat kale in a salad form, but I just cant bring myself to do it. I’ll only eat it in a smoothie or as chips. Your salad looks so tempting and refreshing though!

  13. Silvia @ skinny jeans fod on January 16, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    Well, the raw jalapeno that I discover in this kale salad definitely would make me yoddle! 😉

  14. Lace @ FamilyFitnessandFoodery on January 16, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    Jalapenos make EVERYTHING better!
    P.S. Dr. Seuss is the biz.

  15. Sara @ fitcupcaker on January 16, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    Ive just started eating Kale and I like it alot! Goat cheese is amazing too, so creamy!

  16. Emily @ Glitz Glam Granola on January 16, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    Ohh this salad looks delicious! I think my mistake is not massaging the dressing into the leaves before and using the wrong type of kale but I’m going to try this! I miss cheese so much (I’m dairy-free) but I’ll have to spice it up with a few other toppings!

  17. Sarah @ Yogi in Action on January 16, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    Kale was something I use to hate, and the more I eat it, the more I enjoy it! I’m definitely going to try out this salad.

    Dr. Seuss is so smart- he’s got a lot of great quotes!

  18. Alisha @ Alisha's Appetite on January 16, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    I’m totally obsessed with kale, jalapenos AND goat cheese right now! This needs to happen in my kitchen as soon as I pick up another bunch of kale. And I really like the Dr. Suess quote….he’s a smart cat.

  19. Cassi on January 16, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    kale is so bitter to me so i like the idea of massaging the dressing and spices in. usually my kale tastes so plain. must be not enough seasoning on it. nothing like grabbing a forkful of plain lettuce. ugh. when you wash your greens do you just use paper towel or lettuce spinner? seriously, drying greens is my worst nightmare! soggy greens in my bowl=icky. 🙂

  20. joelle (on a pink typewriter) on January 16, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    Great quote!

    I think my day is now complete that I’ve heard about yodeling and lederhosen haha.

  21. Stellina @My Yogurt Addiction on January 16, 2013 at 1:13 pm

    Wow that looks incredibleeeeeeeeeeeeeee! Yum 🙂

  22. Kayla on January 16, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    I don’t know if I’m brave enough for raw kale yet. But maybe I’ll have to give it a try. I think the produce around here isn’t that great, especially now, so greens like that need to be cooked somehow for them to become palatable.

  23. Brooke @ Running In Heels on January 16, 2013 at 2:36 pm

    Oh my goodness, that salad sounds heavenly!! I am definitely going to copy you soon 🙂

  24. Leanne on January 16, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    How would this keep overnight? I always make my lunch the night before, and I’ve been hesitant to do a massaged kale salad, for fear that it will be gross & wilty in the morning!

  25. Amanda @ .running with spoons. on January 16, 2013 at 3:17 pm

    This might make me a bad foodie, but… I’m not a big fan of kale. Welllll, I guess I should say that I don’t think I am since it’s been years since I’ve had any… but yeah. One bad experience was enough to turn me off for quite some time, but seeing as it has so many health benefits, maybe I really ought to give it another shot…

  26. Kate @ on January 16, 2013 at 3:17 pm

    NOM Kale. The one veggie I was actually able to get my sister to eat!

  27. Courtney on January 16, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    YUM! I never would have thought to mix jalapenos and goat cheese, but it sounds divine!

  28. DeeDee on January 17, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Salads are so simple yet so good! Kale took a while to get used to but now it goes in almost all of my salads. Your salad looks delish! Of course I would have to add some red onion. 🙂

  29. Lorne Marr on January 20, 2013 at 6:19 pm

    Thanks for this inspiring idea. I’ve been living (or trying to live) healthy for a couple of years now and every now and then I’m looking for some new recipes. I like this salad because it looks like it’s made in no time, although I’m not sure whether it could get me full enough after a workout. But I’ll give it a try.

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