Raw Kale Grapefruit Salad

About 2 weeks ago, a large box arrived at my doorstep. I love when these things happen (even if it’s just because I’ve placed an order for something as mundane as almond flour) because it’s like there’s a little present waiting for me to open it. This time, however, the box really was more gift-like in nature. What did the box hold?

Why, six beautiful, highly fragrant Texas Rio Star Grapefruit.

It’s no secret that I love grapefruit. You already saw that I made a grapefruit and avocado salad a few weeks ago for Amy’s baby shower. Most of the time, though, I simply eat grapefruit out of hand. When it’s in season, ruby red grapefruit like this Rio Star is unbelievably sweet and is a perfect way to enjoy some sunny, delicious vitamin C, fiber, and lycopene. As I was eating each one of these babies, day after day, I thought I really should try to incorporate one into another actual recipe, and not just keep snacking on them at my desk at work.

And so with a few minutes to spare while I was waiting for other components of dinner to finish cooking, I grabbed some kale from my “garden” and got to work making this quick salad.

Why the quotes around garden? Well, right now, it’s not much of a garden. I anticipate revamping things, but for right now, I have a bunch of empty whiskey barrels. Except for one. You see, last spring, I planted some Red Russian kale seeds. They sprouted and grew, but not very well, and after watering them for months and watching them remain small baby kale leaves, I decided to scrap the kale plans and I pulled the baby plants and made one little salad. (I’m not an expert gardener by any stretch, so much of my gardening is trial and error) I planted some cilantro and dill in its place.

As the summer wore on, the cilantro and dill couldn’t withstand our never-ending 110 degree days with no rain. So eventually, I realized there was no keeping these herbs alive, and I pretty much ignored this barrel, instead tending to the few surviving plants in the other barrels in my garden (I did have some tomatoes, butternut squash, and plenty of sage, basil, rosemary and lemon thyme).

When fall arrived and the heat finally subsided, something started sprouting in the long-forgotten barrel. Turns out, it was more kale. I watered it once in a while, but once my tomato plants were finished for the season, I gradually began ignoring the whole garden project, aside from grabbing some rosemary every now and then for a recipe. We were finally getting enough rain by that time that it apparently stayed alive without my interference. Meanwhile, the kale grew. And grew.

Now, with my continued lack of attention, my Red Russian kale has thrived. I can go outside anytime I’d like and cut enough kale for a meal, and there’s still plenty to be had. It seems happy in that barrel. I imagine it won’t appreciate the heat when late spring comes, but until then, I’m happy to have it.

The moral to this story? Ignore your garden, and sometimes, good stuff will come out of it! (Okay, not really. I think it’s just that I’ve learned that kale is a cooler weather crop and in Texas, that means I should grow it in winter.)

Anyway, back to the salad. This salad was a perfect, healthy, light accompaniment to our meal that evening. I simply massaged the kale leaves with the dressing, and topped it with the grapefruit and sunflower seeds. It couldn’t have been easier. Come to think of it, I have more grapefruit (and obviously more kale!), so perhaps I should make some more for this evening!

A big thanks to TexaSweet for sharing some grapefruit with me. I definitely made good use of it, that’s for sure.

Raw Kale Grapefruit Salad (Gluten-free, Vegan, Nut-Free, Soy-Free)

1 grapefruit, sectioned (catch the juice as you section it in a bowl)

1 T olive oil

1 t coconut aminos

kosher salt to taste

1 bunch kale, leaves torn into bite-sized pieces

2 T raw sunflower seeds

Whisk together the grapefruit juice, olive oil, coconut aminos, and salt together in a bowl. Add to kale leaves and massage with your hands until all of the leaves are well-coated with the dressing. Add the grapefruit sections and sunflower seeds and gently toss to coat in dressing.

Serves 2-4.


  1. says

    Looks wonderful. Very creative combo of ingredients! I love your kale plant! Greens are great like that – they grow with little fuss. Our lettuce bed is thriving with all this sun. So great. Glad to find others that like to garden too. It’s so much fun!

    Be Well,

  2. says

    I’m so jealous of your barrel of kale! We tried raised bed gardening 2 years ago and failed miserably. Sadly our yard just doesn’t get enough sun. Next house (if there is one!) a sunny yard will be a priority :)


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