Kale Salad with Goji Berries & Maple Roasted Almonds

January 3rd, 2013 at 8:08 am

What would the third day of January be without some kind of kale salad, right?

If one of your New Year’s intentions is to eat more leafy greens, I’ve got you covered!

Nothing is more alkalizing, detoxifying, liver loving, cell satisfying, or just plain delicious as a big bowl of kale salad. This one packs in amazing layers of flavor, texture, and pretty great nutrition, too.

Have you tried goji berries? You must! Along with macadamia nuts, they’re one of my favorite super food splurges. In traditional Chinese medicine, dried goji berries have been used for thousands of years. Also called wolfberries, goji (pronounced GO-jee) berries boast an incredible nutritional profile including amino acids (over 15!), vitamins, minerals, free-radical fighting antioxidants, and zinc. According to Navitas Naturals, a leading source of super foods, goji berries “contain more vitamin C than oranges, more beta-carotene than carrots, and more iron than soybeans and spinach” when compared ounce for ounce.

I don’t believe there are such things as “miracle foods.” A balanced real food diet is what it’s all about. But I do think certain foods are all stars that deserve a special cheer once in a while. Goji berries are one of them!

Don’t expect these little jewels to taste like raisins. They don’t. They remind me of a cross between an unsweetened dried cranberry and a dryer, chewier version of a raisin. They’re unique in their own right.

To give this kale salad a little sweetness and crunch, Maple Roasted Almonds do the trick. Make up a batch (or a triple batch…) to keep on hand for snacking and tossing in salads. Together with the almond butter dressing, they make this kale salad really shine.

(A quick note to you almond-free folks: replace the almond butter in the dressing with sunflower seed butter. Use toasted sunflower seeds or my Asian-Style Salty Seeds instead of the roasted almonds.)

Did you catch yesterday’s release of the first ever Daily Bites motivational monthly calendar? Download your free PDF right here!

Get your green on with more healthy salad recipes like these:

Kale Salad with Goji Berries & Maple Roasted Almonds
Serves 4

Packed with antioxidant power, this nutrient-dense kale salad is an absolute delight for kale lovers, but it’s also sweet enough to appeal to those new on the kale scene. The Maple Roasted Almonds add a special touch. Try sprinkling them on other salads, too, for added crunch and sweetness.

6 cups thinly sliced kale leaves
2 medium celery stalks, peeled and finely chopped
1 medium shallot, finely chopped
1 medium carrot, peeled and grated
1/4 cup goji berries
1 batch Maple Roasted Almonds (recipe follows), roughly chopped
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon Grade B maple syrup
2 tablespoons creamy roasted almond butter (unsweetened)
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste

In a large bowl, combine the kale, celery, shallot, carrot, goji berries, and almonds. In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, olive oil, maple syrup, and almond butter. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Allow the salad to stand at room temperature for at least 15 minutes before serving, or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 2 days.

Maple Roasted Almonds
Makes about 1/3 cup

1/3 cup raw almonds
1 tablespoon Grade B maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
Pinch of ground cinnamon
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Pinch of sea salt

Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl and stir to coat. Spread the almonds out in a single layer on the baking sheet. Roast for 10-12 minutes until fragrant and lightly browned. Cool completely before using.


  1. This salad sound divine! And the pictures are amazing. Right now I’m cooking through your Diary-Free and Gluten-Free ebook. (PERFECT for cleaning up the diet after the holidays!) And I’m going to have to add this one to our menu next week!

  2. Looks great Hallie. Healthy and delicious. Perfect for a post-holiday meal!

  3. This looks so good! I love kale and am always looking for new ways to try it. I’m definitely going to try this one!

  4. This tastes great and packed well for lunch the next day!

  5. I think this is my favorite salad on your blog! I can’t get enough!

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I'm Hallie Klecker, a professional recipe developer, author, and passionate gluten-free foodie. As a certified holistic nutrition educator, my goal is to inspire others to live a balanced, nourished life through eating well and living pure—one bite at a time. Learn more.