Do you get tired of the same old green salad at dinner time and family events? If you are like me there is only so much green leaf lettuce with add-ins that you can handle! This White Bean and Kale salad is going to be your new favorite go to…and I guarantee you it costs a fraction of the green salad you normally make! It uses just a few ingredients, most of which you probably have on hand already, but it creates a dish unlike any other you have had. One of the things I love about this salad is that it feeds a ton of people with such little effort, making it a perfect addition to your next BBQ or family dinner.
I am not gonna lie though, this is a dish that you have to plan ahead of time (unless you use canned beans which I don’t think would take on the flavor as well). The longest part is the cooking of the dried beans, but this is where all the flavor is added in so like I said, canned beans are not your friend for this dish! With that being said, you can make a double batch and have enough beans to use in another dish later in the week, we love double duty dishes.
White Bean and Kale Salad – Served Warm or Cold!
- 2 c Dried White Beans I used Navy but you can use any kind you like
- 1 bunch Kale stems removed and chopped
- 5 cloves Garlic peeled
- 1 tbsp Marjoram
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 sm Lemon
- 1 tsp Red Pepper Flakes more or less to your taste
- 3/4 c Parmesan freshly grated
- 1/2 c Olive Oil for finishing
- Salt and Pepper to taste
In a medium pot, combine the white beans, marjoram, garlic, 2 tablespoons olive oil and 6 cups water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Allow to cook for 5 mins at high boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low maintaining a gentle simmer. Cook, partially covered, for 1 hour 20 minutes and stir occasionally. (the beans should be just tender all the way through).
Add the chopped kale, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to the pot and stir to combine. Cover the pan and simmer until the kale is wilted and tender, an about 15 minutes. Stir in the remaining 1/2 cup olive oil and the cheese. Zest 1/2 of the lemon over top and squeeze juice to finish. Stir all to combine and serve warm.
If you prefer the salad the next day you can refrigerate overnight and serve cold.
Now if you are wondering how the salad turns out let me just tell you. The beans, although cooked for almost 2 hours, have a wonderful texture with a little bite to them (they are anything but mushy) and then you get the slight bitterness from the kale mixing with the lemon zest making it a perfect dish for any meal. I really love that this salad is just as yummy cold as it was warm, so you don’t have to worry about serving it right off the stove. In fact, my hubby and I both agreed that it was even better the day after we had made it for dinner. I mean is that even possible?!
Other great salad recipes to try
- Chicken BLTA Salad with Avocado Dressing
- Kale and Broccoli Salad with Creamy Coleslaw Dressing
- 50 Simple Salads (from Food Network)