You've never had a Mediterranean kale salad like this one! It leaps out of the salad bowl with Mediterranean flavors! Big bold and briny olives, sweet tomatoes, salty feta, and crisp cucumber make this the perfect summer evening meal!
How to: Mediterranean kale salad
- Kale: This magically hearty green can stand up to the heartiest dressings, proteins, vegetables, and cheeses. If for some reason you can’t find kale at your local grocery store or farmers market, there are plenty of possible substitutions. Try, mustard greens, chard, bok choy or, in a pinch, you can use hearty little baby arugula leaves in your Mediterranean salad.
- Olives: If you don’t have any kalamata olives on hand, or if they’re not your favorite briny treat, feel free to substitute in Castelvetrano olives, Agrinion olives, Manzanilla olives, or even olive tapenade. You could also add in capers for a salty treat!
- Feta: If you’ve never had feta cheese, you’re in for a flavor explosion! It’s rich, and slightly salty, with a hint of sharpness. However, if you don’t have feta, cotija or queso blanco would step right in very nicely. If you’re a blue cheese fan, a good gorgonzola or Roquefort would hit the right notes too.
- Oregano: I love using dried oregano in vinaigrettes! I think it really has a delightfully savory flavor that plays beautifully with nearly every type of vinegar or lemon and lime. However, if you have a garden and you’re eyeing that oregano plant, finely dice some and whisk it in! The basic rule for substituting fresh herbs for dry is one tablespoon fresh for every teaspoon of dried herbs.
- Pepperoncini or Roasted Bell Peppers: Why choose? Pile both of them on the salad! Or, if you really want to up your pickle game, you could reach for a jar of Italian giardiniera relish. It’s loaded with pickled cauliflower, celery, carrots, and the relish lives in a spicy brine with Italian seasoning.
- In a small bowl or jar, whisk together lemon zest and juice, honey and olive oil or shake to combine. Whisk or shake in the oregano and salt and pepper, to taste.
- In a large bowl, toss together the kale and about half of the dressing. Use your fingers to massage the dressing into the kale until it becomes a bit soft.
- To the bowl, add the cucumber, tomatoes, olives, feta and Pepperoncini and/or roasted red peppers. Drizzle with the remaining dressing and serve.
Recipe Substitutions & Alternatives
- To make it gluten free: This recipe is naturally gluten free!
- To make it dairy free: Leave the feta off the salad.
- To make it vegan: Leave the feta off the salad. Swap the honey out for granulated sugar.
- Instead of kale: Try the salad with spinach or romaine lettuce.
You can make the dressing up to 4 days in advance. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
You can massage the kale up to 1 day in advance. Add the salad toppings just before serving.
Other fresh salad recipes:
- Spring Salad with Burrata
- Salmon Nicoise Salad
- Kale & Crispy Chickpea Caesar Salad
- Spinach, Strawberry and Fennel Salad
- Berry Chicken Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette
Mediterranean Kale Salad
A simple kale salad with cucumber, kalamata olives, tomatoes and feta with a lemon olive oil dressing.
- Prep Time: 10-15 mins
- Total Time: 10-15 mins
- Yield: Serves 4
- Category: Salad, Side
- Method: No-Cook
- Cuisine: Mediterranean
- 4 cups chopped kale or other greens
- 1 ½ cups cucumber, spiralized or diced
- 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, quartered
- ½ cup Kalamata olives
- ½ cup crumbled feta cheese
- Pepperoncini and/or roasted red peppers
- Cooked tuna or chicken breast (optional)
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon honey
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
- Coarse salt and ground black pepper, to taste
- In a large bowl, toss together kale, cucumber, tomatoes, olives, feta and Pepperoncini and/or roasted red peppers.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together lemon zest and juice, honey and olive oil. Whisk in oregano and salt and pepper, to taste. Toss dressing with salad, a few tablespoons at a time.
Cooking Tip: Massage the kale pieces in a little bit of olive oil prior to assembling the salad.
- Serving Size: ¼ of recipe
- Calories: 239
- Sugar: 8g
- Sodium: 372mg
- Fat: 19g
- Saturated Fat: 4g
- Unsaturated Fat: 15g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 16g
- Fiber: 4g
- Protein: 7g
- Cholesterol: 13mg
Keywords: easy, simple, dressing, raw, no cook, healthy, massaged