Market Kale Salad

This kale salad was inspired by the pizza-centric restaurant in my neighborhood that makes amazing salads. We eat there often and I love the salad with farro, avocado, carrots, fennel and a creamy green garlic dressing.

Market Kale Salad

There's a small restaurant in our neighborhood (Ragazza) known for great pizza. And yes, the pizza is on point. But, really, it's their salads I crave - substantial, always changing, made from whatever looks great at the market. I ordered a ringer of a salad the other night, and have been making a version at home in the days since combing market greens with the Ragazza spin. Here you see kale, farro, lots of avocado, carrots and fennel tossed with a creamy green garlic dressing. It's as good as it sounds. The version I've been making is down below, or you can check out the version Sharon makes with little gem lettuce here (scroll a bit).

Market Kale Salad Recipe

Market Kale Salad: Prepping the Ingredients

To prep the fennel and carrots, it's worth using a mandolin if you have one. If not, no problem, just use a knife an slice very thinly. If you do too crude a cut the salad loses a bit of its finesse. I like it made with semi-pearled farro, but when I ran out of that reached for wheat berries too. Either way is good.

Market Kale Salad Recipe

Make A Meal of It

It has been a bit busy around here and this sort of substantial salad is nice to be able to throw together on somewhat of a whim. To keep most of the ingredients prepped isn't a big deal (grains/dressing/carrots/ nuts)...then, it's not much of a leap to a full meal by adding a poached egg.

Market Kale Salad Recipe

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Market Kale Salad Recipe

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Market Kale Salad

5 from 1 vote

Lacinato kale is my variety of choice here.

Green Garlic Dressing
  • 2 stalks green garlic (or scallions), rinsed and chopped (~1/4 cup)
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup / 80 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons ripe avocado
  • 1 teaspoon honey, or to taste
  • fresh pepper to taste
Kale Salad
  • 1 bunch kale, destemmed, torn into pieces
  • 1 cup / 5.5 oz cooked farro or wheat berries (semi-pearled or whole)
  • 4-5 farmers' market carrots, very thinly sliced
  • 1 small bulb of fennel, transparently sliced
  • 1 avocado, cut into small cubes
  • a big handful of almond slices, toasted
  1. Make the dressing by using a hand blender or food processor to puree the green garlic, salt, lemon juice, olive oil, avocado, honey, and pepper until smooth. Taste, and adjust with more salt, or honey, or lemon juice.
  2. Before you're ready to serve, combine the kale with about half of the dressing in a large bowl use your hands to work the dressing into the kale, softening up the kale a bit in the process. Add the farro, carrots, and fennel, more dressing, and a couple pinches of salt, and toss again. Taste, and add the last of the dressing if needed. This is a salad I like quite heavily dressed. Add the avocados and almonds and give one last gentle toss.

Serves 2-4.

Prep Time
10 mins
If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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Recipe Rating


Heidi- thank you so much!! I did not want to offend or flame you, at all. I can see this is a misunderstanding and appreciate your response. I'd love to help you get a table at Ragazza. :) However, I don't know how to contact you directly. Do you mind emailing me? Cheers - Alisha

HS: Happy to Alisha - and will do.


Always fantastic to find new ways to use kale! I never thought to mix it with avocado. And the dressing sounds yummy - good for summer salads!


Sounds fantastic, although I have been having a hard time finding green garlic as of late, (Rainbow still have it?) I may try with some spring shallots from Dirty Girl Farms. Got my knife and glasses from Quitokeeto and they are just lovely! Thank you! Also, so glad I stuck with the comments as I also thought you were talking Pizzetta 211, but knew you lived closer to me. I must try Ragazza next.

HS: Hi Kari - I think I might have picked it up at Knoll at the Ferry market. Happy to hear your package came through - sounds like I should have walked it over :)

Kari Zazzara

We made this salad last night and it was absolutely fantastic! I was too impatient to finely slice the corrots and fennel so I used the slicing attachment to my food processor and it worked well but probably would have been better finely sliced. I will definitely be throwing this into my regular rotation!!


Hi Heidi, I just made this for lunch today and literally just finished eating it. I used brown rice instead of farro because I didn't have any and it was really delicious! Thank you!


I didn't have all of the ingredients and this was still fabulous. I didn't have wheatberries or farro so I did omitted that. I also didn't have green garlic or scallions so I used a tiny bit of chopped white onion, a dash of granulated garlic and some fennel fronds instead. Even with my hack job, the dressing was amazing. Thanks for the great recipe!


@Sharon - thank you for sharing the original. I hope to visit your restaurant next time I'm in SF.


Thank you so much for this recipe! I had most of the veggies on hand, so I tried out a veggie-only version of this salad (no farrow, no almonds). A full teaspoon of honey was a bit sweet for my taste, and I actually used garlic cloves instead of stalks (just because I didn't have any stalks). I would only recommend this for raw-garlic lovers - but I really enjoyed it! The avocado in the dressing is really a nice touch.


Last night, my boyfriend's mom made a similar salad but the dressing was just olive oil and lemon juice. Your dressing sounds great and I love all the fresh nutritious ingredients!

Julia {The Roasted Root}

Made this tonight - it was delicious! Thanks for another great recipe :o)

Linda K

Heidi, so glad that you enjoy our salads at Ragazza! Please know that you can always call ahead and we will put your name on the list. Anytime! We also make this salad with little gems sometimes, but we love the kale the best! Cheers! Sharon

HS: Thanks Sharon - such a huge fan. Looks like a trip to Rainbow for that vinegar is in my future!


I am going to the farmer's market now to pick up the ingredients for this. The dressing sounds delicious! I'm sure I will find many other recipes to use it with, but do you have any suggestions?

The Culinistas

Made this salad last is wonderful. I made the dressing earlier in the day and was worried that the dressing was going to be to sweet but it was perfect with all the ingredients in the salad.


I am always looking for new ways to enjoy my favorite greens. Can't wait to try it! Thanks

Julie Schwarz

That lovely blue bowl... I first saw it holding your deep, dark gingerbread batter and now there it is again full of creamy, crunchy, healthy kale salad. What pattern is it?

HS: I'm not sure Lizzie - it was a lucky antique store find.


Perfect timing on this recipe! Thank you! First CSA pick up on Thursday evening, and included was some kale. I seem to always struggle with the "good for you dark greens" with regard to recipes. This recipe was delicious on our almost triple digit heat day here in Colorado. I did have to substitute the olive oil (I know, didn't realize that I was so low!). Used 1/2 Aragan oil and 1/2 canola. The nutty taste was perfect! Thank you so much for your wonderful blog and recipes.

HS: Happy it worked out Teri - good call on the argan oil!

Teri Whalen Angcos

I love kale, this salad is very inspirational. I think I will try it out tomorrow!


I love avocado in my salad dressings but always forget to add it. Thanks for the reminder and the delicious recipe posting!

Sarah @ Fresh Living

I'm destined to make this today. I coincidentally have most of these ingredients on hand! Thank you for the idea on how to put them together. :)


sounds wonderful. with my limited kale experience, i've found the russian kale, lacy and pink eddged to be much more tender than the dino kale etc. in my school garden, the kids pick it and eat it straight from the garden, sweeter too. never really see it in the markets. love the dressing, can't wait to try it.


The salad looks great. Interesting to see how you use Kale, it's very much a Winter vegetable over here in Ireland.

The Fingal Foodie

For those of us that are living in the disadvantaged NE, how do we tell what kind of kale we're getting? I believe I've only seen one kind. Will definitely make this- kale is my go to grrrrrrreen.


Wonderful. There's a small restaurant, Rustik Ravern, near me, too in DC known for its pizza but also with a delicious kale salad. On a summer evening nothing better than that and a glass of white wine on their patio. I'll try this recipe soon.


You can make it vegan by substituting honey for agave nectar.

Vanessa @ Project Zen

Just made this recipe and it was so delicious! Thanks for the inspiration for such a yummy nutritious raw food feast. Had only quinoa not Farro but still worked a treat although Farro would add another great texture. Thx again


Looking forward to making this salad! Not a fennel fan, so I will try radishes instead. Any others ideas?


Danielle: In the United States, it has become quite common to use Lacinato/Tuscan kale raw in salads, especially after Melissa Clark published a recipe for a Tuscan kale slaw in The New York Times which called for very thin ribbons of thinly sliced leaves. This is the dark green, bumpy-leaved kale you see in the photographs here. At this time of year, kale leaves are neither as tough nor as sweet as they are after the first frost.


I love this recipe. love Kale and Avocado :) I just mixed the dressing ingredients (I mashed avocado) in my shaker. Still it was good :)


Thank you Heidi for a stunner once more! Especially here in Spain where every new salad idea is heaven to me!

Kobie du Plessis

Thanks for a vegan recipe (alternative sweetener could be used for those who avoid honey). I can't wait to try it... maybe even today :)


Such a gorgeous and delicious way to utilize all my garden kale! This is going on the dinner list for next week.

Jessica @ GardenGastronomy

love love LOVE kale! Have been using it tons, as its got so much good stuff in it and seems to absorb alot of companion flavors. Great to see it on your site. Summer yums are on the horizon. Rock'n roll. thanks too Heidi, your site is an inspiration for me almost daily as I peruse my natural foods pantry and make whole foods meals for my fam.


This salad sounds delicious and I'm pretty sure there'll be a bunch of kale in my CSA this week so I know what I'm doing with it! And congratulations on your success! I know exactly how it feels to misjudge demand for your products and at the same time be limited in your ability to produce more. I just launched a farmers' market only artisan bread company and on our first day we sold our in 45 minutes. We've been able to extend that to an hour and a half (the market runs 5 hours!) but we've reached our production capacity! Frustrating but exciting at the same time. Fills your head with big dreams! :)


What an interesting combination. As much as I love kale, and as often as I use it to make chips, soups, etc., it never occurred to me to use it as a salad green for some reason. I'm definitely pinning this to my "to try list." Thanks! :)

Chris at Hye Thyme Cafe

I went to Pizzetta 211 once a million years ago and had to leave because we couldn't get served - but I would love to try it again. This sounds amazing and I have a some kale and fennel in the fridge so I am definitely going to try it. Also, it was fun running into you at Out the Door a few weeks ago! Sorry if we seemed stalkerish - you probably didn't remember but we also met a few years ago at BlogHer Food. :) Cheers!

Alice Q. Foodie

That salad sounds amazing! Avocado and kale and hearty grain--perfect for summer dinner.


This looks phenomenal! Thanks for the recipe!

Christina Main

Nothing beats a kale salad on a warm day, and I'm glad we've been having lots of them. Congratulations, again, on the launch of the shop! It's a thrilling experience to be able to share things you love with a customer base that is excited about what you're offering. The branding, packaging, bonus recipes....everything was so well done!


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