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Massaged Kale Caesar Salad:

I love a good massaged kale salad! And this NEW massaged kale Caesar salad is my new favorite.

Why massaging the kale makes all the difference:

I don’t know about you but I hate the taste of raw kale! It has a bitter and rough taste I just can’t get down with. But when I take the time to massage my kale and give it some TLC it changes the texture, the taste, and I have also found to digest it a lot better.

What do I use to massage the kale?

Massaging the kale requires good quality olive oil, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste. And the trick to getting the perfect texture and taste is to massage it for at least 3 minutes.

How do I massage the kale?

Simply by using your hands and massaging the oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper, for at least 3 minutes. And you will know once the kale is good to go, because it will be softer and a more vibrant green color.

Caesar dressing:

And once the kale has been massaged I set it aside and prepare my plant-based caesar dressing.


Ingredients you will need:

  1. Tahini
  2. Lemon juice
  3. Salt and pepper to taste
  4. Maple syrup
  5. Capers
  6. Minced garlic
  7. Spicy brown mustard
  8. Water

How to make the dressing:

I add everything to a bowl and with my immersion blender I blended it all up. But if you don’t have an immersion blender, use a high powered blender, or a food processor to blend it all up.

Air fried chickpea croutons:

I like to prepare my air fried chickpea croutons first, since these take the longest. But they could also be prepared ahead of time and stored in airtight container for up to 3 days.

Ingredients you will need:

  1. Chickpeas
  2. Paprika
  3. Cumin
  4. Salt and pepper
  5. Garlic powder
  6. Garlic avocado oil spray

How to make the croutons:

I add the chickpeas to my air fryer pan. And spray with the garlic avocado oil (about a couple sprays), then add the seasonings, and mix it all up with my hands. And cook 370 for 15-20 minutes, shaking half way through. But if you don’t have an air fryer you can bake too, 400 F for 20-25 minutes, shaking half way through.

Putting it all together:

And then the fun part, putting it all together. I add about 1-2 Tbsp of the Caesar dressing and mix into the massaged kale, sprinkle some dairy-free parmesan cheese on top ( I use Violife brand), and add the crunchy air fried chickpea croutons.

Meal prep ahead of time:

I like to meal prep everything on Sunday for an easy grab and go meal during the work week. And I keep everything separate until the day or night I plan on enjoying the Caesar salad. Because this just helps prevent the salad from getting soggy and the chickpea croutons not keeping the crunch.

I can’t wait to hear what you all think! Enjoy and be sure to tag me in your creations over on Instagram.

Plant Based Massaged Kale Caesar Salad:

Serves 4


  • 4 cups chopped kale
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • Salt and pepper to taste



  • Add everything to a large bowl
  • With your hands massage the oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper into the kale (massage for about 3-4 minutes)
  • Add 1-2 Tbsp caesar salad dressing and massage
  • Top with air fried chickpea croutons and dairy-free Parmesan cheese

Dairy-Free + Vegan Caesar Salad Dressing:

Makes 1 cup


  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 2 lemons juiced
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup capers
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 Tbsp spicy brown mustard
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 garlic clove minced



  • Add everything to a bowl and with an immersion blender, blend it all up!
  • If you don't have an immersion blender, it can also be blended in a high powered blender or in a food processor.
  • Store in an airtight container in refrigerator

Air Fried Chickpea Croutons

Makes 1 cup


  • 1 15.5 oz can chickpeas
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Garlic avocado oil spray



  • Rinse and drain your chickpeas removing the skin
  • Add chickpeas to air fried pan
  • Spray with garlic avocado oil
  • Add seasoning and mix with hands to ensure all chickpeas are coated
  • Cook in air fryer 370 for 15-20 minutes shaking half way through
  • If baking add to a lined baking dish and bake 400 F 20-25 minutes shaking half way
  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature