This hearty vegan Chopped Kale Salad is loaded with pan seared herb tofu, brussels sprouts, apples, pecans and a creamy tahini dressing.
- 1/2 cup dried quinoa or 1 cup cooked quinoa
- 1 block (~450 g) extra firm tofu, pressed, drained and cubed
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp dry thyme, divided
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- 1/4 tsp salt and pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 9–10 small Brussels sprouts, halved or quartered
- 1 bunch of Lactino Kale, destemmed and chopped
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 medium sized apple, I used Pink Lady
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans
- 1/4 cup dried cherries
- Miso Ginger Tahini Salad Dressing
- Prepare your quinoa according to package. For extra flavor, replace the suggested amount of water with vegetable broth.
- In an airtight container add in the cornstarch, garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon dry thyme, salt and pepper and mix well. Add in your tofu, seal your container and give a gentle toss to completely coat your tofu.
- Heat up a large skillet over medium high heat and then add half your oil allowing a minute to warm through. Add in your tofu pieces making sure they fit in one even layer, then allow to cook undisturbed for about 3 minutes or until your tofu has become golden, then flip and cook on the opposite side for an additional 3 minutes or until the tofu has seared.
- To the pan, add in your Brussels sprouts and remaining thyme. Continue to stir occasionally, allowing the Brussel sprouts to start lightly browning and searing on both sides, about 4-5 minutes. Once cooked to your liking, remove from heat and prepare the kale.
- Add the kale, lemon juice and a pinch of salt to a large mixing bowl and gently rub the kale until it turns a deeper green color and softens.
- Now assemble your salad. Top your greens with the quinoa and tofu mix and give a good toss to combine. Serve your salad mix with the additional toppings including the sliced apples, pecans, and dried cherries. Then drizzle with your dressing and serve.
Massage your kale. If you leave your kale as is after washing, it won’t have much flavor outside of just bitter. To help break it down and make it softer and more enjoyable, make sure you rub your kale leaves well to help break down some of the fibers.
Change up the textures. I love the soft bites of kale along with the chewy tofu and the crunch of the pecans and apple slices. Add a creamy element like the dressing or some cubed avocado.
Season throughout. If you noticed, there are seasonings used at every step of this salad preparation. Doing this ensures that each bite is loaded with flavor.
Storage. If storing for meal prep, store the kale, tofu and Brussels sprouts and quinoa in one container and your toppings in another. Wait to slice your apple until the time you plan to enjoy your salad. Then pour your dressing over top. Your ingredients should keep well in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
Keywords: chopped kale salad, seared tofu, herb tofu, tahini salad dressing