There's so much goodness in this superfood salad. Kale, avocado, cabbage, rice and more, all tossed with a miso dressing. Delicious!
There are some days when my body craves a big bowl of veggies, and this superfood salad takes on that role like the superhero it is! Packed with cruciferous vegetables (hello, fiber!), healthy plant-based protein, healthy fats and whole grains, it helps me reach my daily veggie goals while filling me up at lunchtime.
If you're looking for an extra dose of protein, throw in another handful of edamame, or toss the salad with some baked tofu, seared shrimp or poached chicken breast.
If you like to meal prep, make a batch of Instant pot shredded chicken to add to salads like this one all week long.
Ingredients for superfood salad
- KALE: Kale is available bundled as whole leaves, or chopped and sold in bags. Even though it seems more convenient to buy kale that's already chopped, every bagged kale I've tried contains pieces of kale. It seems that they just chop the kale without first cutting out the tough, woody stems, so I end up spending even more time cutting out those tough pieces. Buying the whole leaves is definitely the way to go!
- RED CABBAGE: Yes, you could also use regular green or Napa cabbage, but red cabbage is so much prettier! Plus, it contains more fiber, Vitamin C, calcium, iron and potassium than green cabbage.
- EDAMAME: I buy edamame in the frozen food section - usually already shelled. If buying edamame in pods, follow the preparation direction on the package, remove the shells, then measure out 1 cup of edamame for this salad.
- RICE: This is a great way to use up brown rice from last night's dinner. In fact, I often make a little extra rice so that I have some on hand for this salad. Quinoa could be substituted, especially handy if you have some frozen quinoa stashed away in your freezer.
- CARROT: Peel, then grate the carrot using the large holes on a box grater.
- AVOCADO: Remove the skin and seed of the avocado before chopping. See How to Prepare an Avocado if you're unsure how to do this.
- SUNFLOWER SEEDS: I always have a stash of raw, hulled sunflower seeds on hand because they add such a great nutty crunch to salads.
- DRESSING: I made this Miso Ginger Dressing with this salad in mind, though it's fantastic on almost salad or even drizzled on grilled shrimp.
See recipe card below for full ingredients list & recipe directions.
Substitutions and Additions:
▪️ KALE: If you prefer not to use kale or if it's not available, you can substitute it with other leafy greens such as spinach, mixed greens, romaine lettuce or arugula. These greens offer their own unique flavors and nutritional profiles, so feel free to choose the one that appeals to you the most or that you have on hand.
▪️ VEGETABLES: Swap in your favorite salad vegetables as desired. Raw broccoli, tomatoes, blueberries and bell peppers are all good options.
▪️ SEEDS: In place of the sunflower seeds, try pepitas, toasted slivered almonds or chopped walnuts.
Tips to make a superfood salad
This salad requires some chopping, but is a breeze to make. There are just a couple of tips I wanted to share with you to make it taste even better!
First, massage the kale. My teenaged son thinks it's ridiculous when I talk about massaging kale, but I promise that it makes a difference. Use a large, sharp knife to cut out the stems from the kale, then roughly chop the leaves. Place the chopped kale in a large colander. With warm water running over top, gently rub the kale leaves to tenderize them a bit. Drain well before adding to the salad.
Raw sunflower seeds add a nice burst of flavor, but they're even better when toasted. Place the seeds in a small skillet set over medium heat and lightly toast. Keep an eye on the seeds and stir occasionally because those little suckers like to burn when left on the heat for too long. I set a timer to remind myself to shake the pan every minute so that I don't forget to do so while I'm preparing the rest of the salad.
Meal Prep and Storage
When making the salad ahead of time, hold off on dressing the salad and cutting/adding the avocado until ready to serve. The avocado will start to brown unless dressed (the lime juice in the dressing helps to slow the oxidation).
Since this recipe makes a big batch of salad, I like to make it on Sunday to have on hand for lunches during the week. I chop the avocado and dress the salad with a bit of the dressing just before serving that day's portion.
Transfer the undressed salad to one or several airtight containers and store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Rotate this with some of my other favorite meal prep salads, such as Thai Chicken Salad, Moroccan Chicken Quinoa Salad and Lentil Tabbouleh Salad.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are many plant-based protein sources that can be incorporated into this salad in addition to the edamame. Some examples include legumes (such as beans, lentils, and chickpeas), tofu, tempeh and hemp seeds. These plant-based proteins offer a variety of essential amino acids and can be combined with other ingredients to create a balanced meal.
To prevent avocado from browning in the salad, you can take a few steps. First, wait until just before serving to cut and add the avocado to the salad. The exposure to air accelerates the browning process, so minimizing the time between cutting and consumption helps. Secondly, you can squeeze some lemon or lime juice over the avocado pieces. The citric acid in the juice slows down the oxidation process, keeping the avocado fresher for longer.
Other awesome salad recipes to try
Superfood Salad with Miso Dressing
- 6 cups (lightly packed) chopped or torn kale leaves stems removed
- 2 cups chopped red cabbage
- 1 cup edamame (no pods)
- 1 cup chopped English cucumber
- 1 cup cooked brown rice
- 1 avocado chopped
- 1 large carrot peeled & grated
- 3 tablespoons sesame seeds toasted in a dry skillet
- ½ cup (1 batch) Miso Ginger Dressing
- Place the chopped kale in a colander. With warm water running over top, gently massage the kale to soften it slightly. Drain well.
- In a large serving bowl, combine the kale, red cabbage, edamame, cucumber, rice, avocado, carrot and sesame seeds. Toss to combine.
- If serving right away, pour the Miso Dressing over top and toss to coat the salad.
- If serving later, cover the salad and refrigerate. Dress the entire salad before serving, or dress in portions if not serving the entire salad at once.
Disclosure: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.