Kale & Mango Poppyseed Salad

By Alexandra Caspero on March 31, 2014

kale and mango poppyseed salad

I cannot get enough of this new salad! Fresh kale, juicy mango, creamy avocado and the perfect poppyseed dressing. It was hard to stop taking bite after bite as I was photographing this one.

I am on a mission to have you fall in love with kale salads. I know many of you love them, but it seems like I am seeing more and more clients who don’t. I love kale salads not because of their trendy popularity, but because of the intense nutrient bang for your buck that you get when eating one!

Just one serving of kale provides only 33 calories with 9% of the daily value of calcium, 206% of vitamin A, 134% of vitamin C, and a whopping 684% of vitamin K.  It is also a good source of copper, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus. Yes ma’am, this vegetable is one delicious source of antioxidants and polyphenols.

But it also tends to be a little rough when enjoyed raw. For my clients who don’t love kale, texture is usually the reason why. The trick is to massage the kale with your hands to break down the tough leaves and make it more manageable. Once you wash, dry and rip the kale leaves into a bowl add 1-2 tbsp. of dressing and use your hands to rub the dressing into all the leaves for a few minutes. You should feel the kale begin to wilt as you do this.

The best part of this salad is the creamy, poppyseed dressing drizzled on top. My mom has always loved this dressing and I fondly remember eating it as a child on spinach, red onion and mandarin orange salads. A special treat and departure from our normal daily romaine salads.

While Brianna’s dressing has always been my go-to for this, I decided to adapt my own after seeing it on Kathy’s website. This dressing may make more than you need, which is definitely ok. For the ultimate indulgence, try a bit drizzled onto avocado toast.

If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and tag your Instagram photos with #delishknowledge . I absolutely love seeing your creations. Happy cooking! 


Kale & Mango Poppyseed Salad


The best kale salad! Torn kale tossed with fresh, juicy mango and creamy avocado. Topped with homemade poppyseed dressing.



Poppyseed Dressing: (Adapted from Happy Healthy Life)

  • 3 tbsp. vegan mayo
  • 2 tsp. dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 tbsp. poppy seeds


For the dressing:

  1. Whisk or blend mayo, mustard, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice and mappy syrup together.
  2. Add the minced shallots and poppy seeds, stir to combine.
  3. Wash the kale well, pat dry and remove the leaves from the stem.
  4. Stack the leaves together and roll up.
  5. Roughly chop to get large strips of kale, then slice in 1/2 again.
  6. Place the kale in a large bowl and 2 tbsp. dressing. Massage with your hands for 2-3 minutes until all the kale is covered.
  7. Add the mango and avocado and plate.
  8. Drizzle with extra dressing.

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Meet Alex Caspero

Alex Caspero is a Registered Dietitian, New York Times Bestselling Plant-Based Chef and mom of two. She aims to cut through the nutrition noise by providing real-life, nourishing tips for body and mind. Learn more about Alex.

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    1. Sheila
      April 17, 2014 AT 5:26 pm

      I’m a very literal cook so I need an idea of how much kale, mango, and avocado–I can’t find where you mention that. Thanks! It looks so yummy, not to mention healthy.

      1. DK
        April 17, 2014 AT 5:35 pm

        Hi Sheila! Sorry for any inconvenience. I updated my site today and it looks like many of my recipes are missing parts. While I work in updating those- here are the measurements: 1 head curly kale, washed, dried and torn into bite size pieces. Depending on how large your head of kale is, this will be about 3-4 cups. 1 avocado, diced. 1 mango, diced.

        You might not need all of the dressing. I start with a tbsp. or two, massage into the kale well and then add more as I go. If you do it this way, you can control how much dressing you prefer. Massaging the kale is key here as it helps break down the tough leaf.

    2. Borja mora
      April 17, 2014 AT 3:21 pm

      how did you made/got the vegan mayo??

      1. DK
        April 17, 2014 AT 3:28 pm

        Hi Borja, I got it at the local grocery store but if you can’t find it near you, you can purchase it online: https://amzn.to/1eF3ORO

    3. Tifany Nunez
      April 8, 2014 AT 2:21 pm

      Avocado is like (Green Chicken) you can combine it with anything you want and it will taste good!.

      Thanks for this recipe, i will like to test this recipe next week.

    4. Joanne
      April 1, 2014 AT 4:21 am

      Kale salad lover IN DA HOUSE!! I need to try your version with mango. Because they are my favorite and I have so many hanging around my apartment that how could i not!

    5. Hannah (BitterSweet)
      March 31, 2014 AT 5:52 pm

      Salad never sounded so delicious! I’ve been wild about mangoes ever since gorging on them in Hawaii, and I’m already a big fan of the mango/avocado combination in savory dishes. Clearly, this was meant to be.