Easy (cooked) Kale Salad | Recipe

I haven’t posted a recipe for ages. But this morning I woke up inspired, and now have in my refrigerator a chewy but not tough, green but not raw, tasty yum-yum kale salad–or kale salad starter! All thanks to my 8-quart pressure cooker and Lorna J. Sass.

Lorna Sass transformed the way I use my pressure cooker. Of all her recipe books, I especially like Great Vegetarian Cooking Under Pressure. Along with recipes, she almost always includes tips and techniques, plus easy variations.

So here’s one for all you kale-lovers and wanna be lovers of kale-lovers out there. It’s simple and super good with just about anything. Or…if you decide you don’t like the taste of kale salad (don’t tell me!), you can add it to a bowl of vegetarian (or not) soup.

This recipe is on pp. 84-85 of her vegetarian cookbook. The recipe is for Collard Spaghetti (also yum yum). I used one of her variations.


  • About 1 pound of pretrimmed kale, washed and drained (This time I used a big bag of precut ruffled-leaf organic kale.)
  • 1 cup water (Don’t vary the water, no matter how much kale you have.)
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced or put through garlic press (optional, and I love it)
  • Pinch of salt (optional; I leave it out)


  • Cut off thick stems. Since the kale I used was pre-torn, I trimmed off thick pieces of stem using my kitchen scissors, then rinsed the kale in water.
  • Bring the water, garlic (if using), and salt (if using) to a boil in a large (8-quart) pressure cooker.
  • Add kale and lock the lid in place. Leave heat on high; bring pressure up to high. At this point, you can turn the heat off, or turn it to low. Cook for 1 or 2 minutes (I used 2 minutes).
  • Reduce pressure with quick-release method (run cold water on edge of the the lid until the pressure indicator drops all the way down).
  • Remove lid (facing away from you), transfer cooked kale into a strainer; let it drain and cool a bit.

Optional (I NEVER omit this): Sprinkle the cooked kale with some (not too much) toasted sesame oil and toss with salad forks. You can also add some tamari soy sauce if you’re OK with salt.

In sum: you now have a side dish, an addition to almost any kind of soup (bean soup, lentil soup), or the beginning of whatever strikes your fancy.

Happy Thanksgiving the day after!


© Elouise Renich Fraser, 29 November 2019
Book cover photo found at amazon.com
Vegan kale salad photo found at ambitiouskitchen.com