Grilled Kale Caesar Salad with Crispy Chorizo
This Grilled Kale Caesar Salad with Crispy Chorizo is a fun spin on a traditional caesar. The kale is grilled until tender and slightly charred and then topped with crunchy bits of chorizo and a creamy dressing. It’s a 30 minute Whole30, Paleo and Keto meal that is perfect for summer.
This is a fun spin on caesar salad which combines grilled kale with a creamy caesar dressing and crispy bits of chorizo. I don’t know why it took me so long to combine one of my favourite salads with one of my favourite meats, but it is now a pairing that I will never get tired of eating.
Why you are going to love this Grilled Kale Caesar Salad:
- This isn’t your average caesar salad! It’s smokey and tender and creamy and spicy, in every bite! This is so much more than a basic romaine caesar salad with chicken, and I think you guys are going to love the twist.
- It’s quick and easy to make: Start finish this salad takes just 30 minutes to make, perfect for a quick weeknight dinner.
- Grilling kale is a game changer! For anyone who is not a fan of kale, I highly recommend trying it grilled. The leaves become tender and develop a wonderful smokey flavour that really elevates this from your typical kale salad.
- Crispy chorizo: the crispy chorizo is definitely the highlight of the salad for me. It gives a nice spicy kick to the salad, and by breaking the chorizo up into a crumbly consistency (rather then chunks) it really mixes up well with the salad so you get little bits of chorizo flavour in every bite.
- The caesar dressing: it’s a really simple dressing that takes just minutes to make. You can make the dressing anywhere from a few hours to a day in advance.
- It’s Whole30, Keto and Paleo!
Tips for grilling kale:
- I used a combination of both curly kale and tuscan kale (or cavolo nero) for this salad because I like the different textures. Feel free to use just one type, that would also work well.
- Even though the kale becomes tender when grilled, I still recommend massaging the leaves first. This really helps to soften them.
- Drizzle the kale with oil and place them on a barbecue for just 1 minute until the edges began to char and then flip and cook for another 30 seconds on the other side.
- If you don’t have a barbecue you can use a grill pan or sandwich press, although this will take longer as you will have to work in small batches.
- Once the kale is all grilled, run a knife down either side of the stem to remove it. Don’t try leaving the stem in, it will be chewy and not very enjoyable to eat. After removing the stem, next chop the leaves of the kale into small bite sized pieces.
The Caesar Salad Dressing:
This simple caesar dressing is the perfect combination of creamy, tang and garlic. The trick to ensuring the dressing thickens and emulsifies is to drizzle the olive oil in at a snails place while blending (or whisking furiously). I usually don’t add anchovy paste to my caesar salad dressing because it’s something I rarely have in my fridge. I have found the capers are a great alternative and add a similar saltiness to the dressing without that fishy flavour you often get from anchovies.
The chorizo is a game changer:
The first time that I added chorizo to my caesar salad was a way to use up leftovers. One bite in and I was shocked I had never tried the combination before, it’s so so good. You can use homemade chorizo if you are on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, otherwise store bought chorizo works well. By removing the meat from the sausage casings and breaking it up into a crumbly texture, it becomes crisp and crunchy. The chorizo meat should be cooked at a high temperature until it turns a dark golden colour.
Here are a few other kale recipes that you might enjoy…
- Butternut Squash, Broccoli & Kale Salad with Roasted Garlic Dressing
- Kale & Brussels Sprout Salad with Creamy Lemon Dressing
- Spinach, Kale & Artichoke Dip
- Kale, Butternut Squash & Pomegranate Salad with Lemon Tahini Dressing
- Kale, Spinach & Mushroom Baked Eggs
- Celeriac Risotto with Butternut Squash & Kale
If you make this recipe let me know in the comment section below, I would love to hear what you think or take a photo and tag me (@everylastbite_) on Instagram, I love seeing your photos!
- 7 ounces chorizo
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 bunch curly kale approx 1/2 pound
- 1 bunch tuscan kale (cavolo nero) approx 1/2 pound
- 1 egg yolk room temperature
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1/4 tsp anchovy paste or 1/2 tsp capers
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- Remove the chorizo from it's casings. Place the chorizo meat in a pan on medium high heat and use a wooden spoon to break the meat into a crumbly consistency.
- Leave the chorizo to cook for approximately 7 minutes, past the point of it being cooked through until it is a light brown colour and has a crispy texture.
- In a tall container combine the egg yolk, lemon juice, balsamic, dijon, garlic, anchovy/capers, salt and pepper. Place the end of you immersion blender down to the bottom of the container and turn it on. Very very slowly drizzle in the olive oil and continue to blend until the dressing has emulsified and thickened. Alternatively you can use a large bowl and whisk to make the dressing by whisking vigorously. Taste the dressing and adjust the seasoning as needed. Set aside
- Drizzle the kale with 1 tbsp of olive oil and gently massage the leaves to evenly distribute the oil over all of the leaves.
- Heat a barbecue (or large grill pan) to high heat. Place the kale on the grill and leave to cook for just 1 to 2 minutes per side until tender and slightly charred on the edges. If using a grill pan you may need to work in batches cooking the kale.
- Once the kale is all grilled, place the leaves on a cutting board and run a knife down either side of the stem to remove it. Roughly chop the kale leaves into bite sized pieces and place them in a large bowl.
- Pour the dressing over the kale and toss until all of the kale is coated. Add in the crumbly chorizo and toss. Serve.