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Keto Kale Salad: Low Carb Holiday Sides

It can be tough to find recipes that are delicious and fit our dietary needs. Finding a tasty side dish that’s low-carb, keto-friendly, and loaded with nutrients doesn’t have to be impossible. Introducing Keto Kale Salad; an incredibly flavorful combination of kale, toasted almonds, feta cheese, cranberries, and a homemade dressing.

This recipe is not only perfect for busy moms on the go but also offers athletes or those who follow the ketogenic diet a nutrient dense meal or snack. You don’t need fancy ingredients – just some classic pantry staples will turn this superfood salad into your next family favorite!

As the busy holiday season is upon us, we all want to make healthy eating easy and enjoyable!

A glass bowl of keto kale salad on wood

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🥬 The story of kale

Once upon a time, in a far away land there was an ancient vegetable that was often overlooked and underappreciated. This vegetable was kale – one of the most nutrient dense foods on planet earth! It had been around since the beginning of time but often people would choose to ignore it, preferring other more popular options like broccoli or carrots.

But one day, something magical happened. People started to realize the immense power of kale and its health benefits – from its high concentration of vitamins A, C, K, and B6 to its impressive levels of antioxidants and mineral content. It became a must-have in every kitchen around the world!

Kale was soon used to make all sorts of dishes, from hearty winter soups to salads, smoothies, and even flavorful keto kale salads!

It seemed as though this once overlooked vegetable was now the star of the show – bringing nutrition and flavor to everyday meals.

Close up view of kale in keto kale salad

🥗 The keto kale salad was born

And that is how the keto kale salad was born! A delicious dish filled with nutrients and flavor – just the thing to make your keto holiday side dish a hit!

With its nutty crunch from the almonds, sweet taste from the cranberries, and creamy texture from the feta cheese – it’s sure to become your family’s new favorite keto dish.

What is kale?

Kale is a dark leafy green vegetable in the cabbage family and is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet. It is known for its high levels of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and dietary fiber.

This superfood provides an array of health benefits and is also keto-friendly, low in carbs and calories.

Is kale salad keto?

Yes! Kale salad is keto-friendly, low in carbs and calories. It’s a great way to get more greens into your keto diet without driving up the carb count. Plus, it’s packed with fiber and nutrients that will help fuel your body and keep you feeling full. Personally, I love this easy keto kale salad to meal prep for lunches with a little chicken breast.

Keto kale salad is the perfect keto holiday side dish for busy moms and athletes alike – raw kale salads are delicious, nutritious, and easy to make. You can even make the salad ahead of time the day before, and it will hold up, even with the dressing!

Try this flavorful keto kale salad today – you won’t be disappointed!

Overhead view of keto kale salad in a glass bowl

📏 Macros: nutrition facts:

Let’s take a look at the macros. In this recipe for keto kale salad, one serving is one-eighth of the recipe. A serving has 180 calories, 6 grams of protein, 15 grams of fat, and 5 grams net carbs per serving.

Also, keep in mind, these carbs are from veggies and fresh whole foods.

These macros for keto kale salad are figured with MyFitnessPal, with the ingredients I use in the recipe. I always recommend figuring out your own with the exact items/brands you use. It’s especially important to determine your own if you’re keeping close track and want to be accurate.

🍽 Equipment needed to make keto kale salad

The only equipment you need to make keto kale salad are basic salad making tools! A cutting board, a knife, and a bowl.

Overhead view of a metal salad bowl filled with keto kale salad and tongs

🥘 Ingredients in low carb kale salad

Kale

This dark, leafy green vegetable is an excellent source of vitamins and is a great addition to any keto diet. It has a mild flavor that pairs well with the other ingredients in the salad. I just use regular organic kale from the grocery store, but you could also try baby kale, Tuscan kale, dinosaur kale, curly kale, or any fresh kale you find.

Red Onion

Red onion adds a subtle sweetness to the kale salad that helps balance the more bitter flavors.

Shredded Carrots

Shredded carrots are packed with beta-carotene and fiber, and while not traditionally keto or low carb, some can be used. They add great texture, color, and crunch to the salad.

Note: These can be omitted to lower the carbs if you wish.

Glass bowls filled with ingredients in keto kale salad

Unsweetened Cranberries (or No Sugar Added)

Cranberries are naturally low in sugar and are high in antioxidants. They offer tartness and brightness to the salad which complements the other flavors nicely. 

If you can’t find unsweetened you can make your own dried cranberries with fresh, or in a pinch use those sweetened with apple juice (again, per your own preference and diet).

Chopped or Slivered Almonds

Almonds are a good source of healthy fats which makes them great for a ketogenic diet. Plus their toasted crunch pairs perfectly with the kale salad. 

Keto Lemon Dressing

The dressing for this kale salad is made up of freshly squeezed lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil. To make it keto-friendly I use powdered sweetener such as Swerve Confectioners, and I add a minced garlic clove, Dijon mustard, and salt for flavor.

Overhead view of keto kale salad ingredients

🔪 Instructions

To begin, wash and thoroughly dry the kale leaves before beginning the recipe. This will ensure that all dirt or debris is removed from the leaves, leading to a cleaner taste and texture.

Next, to prepare the kale, use a sharp knife to cut out the stems from each leaf and discard them. Then chop the remaining leaves into thin strips about 1-2 inches long.

After that, in a large bowl or salad bowl, combine the chopped kale with the red onion, shredded carrots, cranberries, and almonds.

🍋 Keto lemon salad dressing

Now, to make the keto lemon dressing, mix together lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, powdered sweetener (such as Swerve Confectioners), minced garlic clove, Dijon mustard, and salt in a jar or small bowl until fully combined.

I like to just seal the jar and shake the dressing ingredients around until it’s all mixed well.

Then pour the dressing over all the salad ingredients in the large bowl. It may sound weird but (it works!), use your hands to work it into the leaves until everything is evenly coated with dressing and greens are wilted slightly and turn darker green. This should take a couple of minutes for a properly massaged kale salad!

Pouring the lemon dressing on the salad

Next, when ready to serve, sprinkle individual servings, or the entire salad with feta cheese. Yum!! Feta is one of my favorite things ever and can be made as sheep or goat cheese.

Add salt and ground black pepper to taste if you wish.

Serve the keto side immediately or refrigerate for up to 4 days in an airtight container.

Bowl of low carb kale salad

💭 Top tip

Serve keto kale salad as a side dish at your holiday dinners or get-togethers. It’s an easy, delicious keto side that everyone will love! Enjoy!

Enjoy this keto kale salad recipe with friends and family during the holidays! Not only is it keto-friendly, but also packed with cranberry flavor and crunchy goodness. And with the keto lemon dressing, it tastes like a burst of flavor in every bite.

A bite of keto kale salad on a fork

🥣 How to store keto kale salad

Another thing I love about this gluten free salad is that it holds up well and can be eaten for leftovers even after the dressing has been added. To store keto kale salad, simply place it in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days. Enjoy!

🍗 Best served with

Keto kale salad is best served with keto-friendly proteins such as grilled chicken or salmon. Alternatively, you can enjoy it on its own as a light meal or snack.

It’s also a great side dish for your ketogenic holiday dinners! Try it with turkey and keto-friendly gravies or keto stuffing recipes to create a complete keto dinner. Enjoy!

Front low view of keto kale salad

📐 Alternatives and substitutions

If you want to try something different, keto kale salad can easily be customized with other ingredients too.

Try adding cubed avocado, bacon bits, or roasted pumpkin seeds, pine nuts, sunflower seeds, or other nuts for a change of flavors. You could also replace the feta cheese with grated parmesan cheese or try adding some keto-friendly cheese cubes.

👩‍🍳 Related keto recipes

🎄 The perfect Christmas or holiday keto side dish

Happy holidays and cheers to a keto kale salad that’s sure to make your holiday dinners more delicious. I love kale, but even my husband enjoyed this salad, and he’s definitely not the usual kale fan.

Try out this tasty keto side dish with friends and family for an easy, yet keto-friendly meal everyone will love! Cheers!

Enjoy the keto kale salad and have a wonderful holiday season.

Wishing you all the best. Bon Appetit and Happy Holidays!

📌 Pin the keto recipe here:

Bowl of keto kale salad

Printable recipe card

Bowl of keto kale salad

Keto Kale Salad

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

This delicious Keto Kale Salad is a low carb flavor sensation! Packed with fresh kale and topped with crunchy almonds, sweet cranberries, and salty feta cheese, every bite is full of delicious textures and flavors. Tangy lemon dressing adds a zesty finish to this hearty leafy green dish.

Ingredients

  • 2 large bunches chopped kale, stems removed
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/3 cup shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cranberries (or no sugar added)
  • 1/2 cup chopped or slivered almonds
  • 1/2 cup crumbles feta cheese

Keto Lemon Dressing

Instructions

    1. Wash and thoroughly dry the kale leaves before beginning the recipe. This will ensure that all dirt or debris is removed from the leaves, leading to a cleaner taste and texture.
    2. To prepare the kale, use a sharp knife to cut out the stems from each leaf and discard them. Then chop the remaining leaves into small pieces of about 1-2 inches long.
    3. In a large bowl, combine the chopped kale with the red onion, shredded carrots, cranberries, and almonds.
    4. To make the keto lemon dressing, mix together lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, powdered sweetener (such as Swerve Confectioners), minced garlic clove, and salt in a jar or small bowl until fully combined.
    5. Pour dressing over salad ingredients in the large bowl and use your hands to massage it into the leaves until everything is evenly coated with dressing and greens are wilted slightly and turn darker green (this should take a couple of minutes).
    6. When ready to serve sprinkle with feta cheese.
    7. Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 4 days in an airtight container. Enjoy!

Notes

To toast the almonds: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread almonds in an even layer on the parchment paper. Bake for 8-10 minutes, stirring once halfway through, until golden brown and fragrant. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1/8th of salad
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 180Total Fat: 15gCarbohydrates: 8gNet Carbohydrates: 5gFiber: 3gProtein: 6g

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Nutrition Disclaimer

Please be aware I am not a medical specialist or nutritional professional. On this blog, I share recipes and what works for me. Please do not take anything on this blog as medical advice and always consult with your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program.

I use MyFitnessPal.com to calculate nutrition facts as a courtesy to my readers, and I remove erythritol from the final carb count and net carb count because does not affect my own blood glucose levels.

This is as accurate as possible, but it’s best to independently calculate nutritional data on your own with the specific ingredients you use. I expressly disclaim any and all liability of any kind with respect to any act or omission wholly or in part in reliance on anything contained in this website.

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This post may include Amazon or other affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. However, I only mention products or services I genuinely love and would recommend to a friend.
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