Simple Kale & Avocado Salad with Lemony Dulse Dressing (gluten free $ AIP/paleo)
This recipe was inspired by a family I used to nanny for, who were mostly vegetarian. I had just graduated from school to be a Nutritionist and the family had been gracious enough to allow me to use them as my first family meal programming and prepping subjects!
This is a salad that they adored and requested every week. With just a few tweaks to make it Autoimmune Protocol friendly, this recipe is just as tasty as the one I made for them! Feel free to add sprouts, cherry tomatoes, and pepper to this salad if you’re not AIP (that’s how it was originally made for them!) or any other veggies that are calling your name.
One reason I wanted to share and recreate my original recipe for this salad for you guys now, is because of how nourishing it is for expecting mamas! And since today marks my 16th week of my first pregnancy, I found it very fitting.
Let’s take a look at the ingredients to see why it’s so nourishing...
Kale: a leafy green that contains high levels of iron, vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, as well as vitamin K, dietary fiber, omega 3 fatty acids, carotenoids/flavonoids (antioxidants); all important in prenatal nutrition intake!
Avocado/avocado oil: contain monounsaturated fats; this is good for you fat that’s excellent for brain/heart development and proper functioning! They also contain oleic acid, a carotenoid that boosts immunity and promotes growth and development in your growing little one. It’s full of the micronutrients: vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, magnesium, iron, potassium, & copper. Not only do avocados cointain dietary fiber, they also contain the most protein of any other fruit!! And that can be HUGE when meeting your daily protein intake can be a challenge during peak morning sickness (or all day sickness as it was for me lol) in your 1st trimester, when animal protein might not sound as appealing. Last but not least, avocados contain high amounts of folate, the all important nutrient that helps to prevent birth defects!
Dulse: this is a sea vegetable similar to nori or kelp. It contains a wealth of micronutrients like magnesium, calcium, potassium, iron, iodine, vitamin A, vitamin C, dietary fiber, as well as polyunsaturated fatty acids. All of these nutrients are important when growing a baby! They help to boost the immune system, improve blood circulation, lower blood pressure, improve your digestion, build strong bones in your baby (and keep yours strong too), as well as strengthens the nervous system.
Lemon: contains antioxidants like vitamin C, which helps boost your immune system and body to produce collagen. Collagen helps with the elasticity of your skin, which is needed for your growing belly and breasts, as well as to support the changes in your joints during pregnancy. Aides in digestion, which is helpful since your digestive function is hampered while pregnant. Lemons also naturally boost your energy based off their negative ion content.
Nutritional yeast: is an inactive yeast that has a “cheesy” flavor to it and adds so much flavor. It’s chock full of the B-complex vitamins. If you have an MTHFR variance/mutation like I do, then you need to make sure the nutritional yeast you get is unfortified (I use this one ) as you may have challenges with methylation of B vitamins. Nutritional yeast also contains the micronutrients selenium, iron, zinc, potassium. It is full of protein, containing 18 of the essential amino acids your body needs. It also contains high levels of thiamine, which is vital in regulating the digestive, endocrine, and cardiovascular systems. Nutritional yeast is also a rich source of folate and the B vitamins it contains aide in skin and joint health, which are important when pregnant due to the changes in your body throughout pregnancy. Lastly, it contains antiviral and antibacterial properties.
Eating this salad while expecting is a great way to nourish your growing baby. And it’s so tasty too! I hope you enjoy this salad as much as I do!
This recipe is nutrient dense, Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) friendly, lower carb, grain free, gluten free, dairy free, nut free, egg free, nightshade free, paleo, primal, Whole30 compliant, & keto friendly!
$ What Makes this High-Vibing Food?
First and foremost, putting your own love, gratitude, time and energy into making foods at home will automatically raise the vibration of the foods/meal. This will also help to balance your sacral and heart chakras. Putting your love into the food you prepare will literally raise the vibrational frequency as love is the highest vibration out there!
You are what you eat and what your food eats. Using organic, GMO free, free/pasture raised, wild caught, minimally processed ingredients lead to an overall higher vibrational frequency. Basically, eating organic provides us extra energy currency!
Contains calcium, a key root chakra nutrient.
Contains iron, which is supportive for your root chakra.
This recipe is full of healthy fats and/or oils, which supports the sacral chakra.
This recipe is higher in carbohydrates, providing the solar plexus chakra with both long-lasting sugar sources (like fiber) and quick acting sugars like glucose.
This recipe is high in fiber, which supports all three of the lower chakras as it aides in the movement and flow of bulk during the digestive processes.
Contains cruciferous veggies, which are especially balancing to the heart chakra.
Contains leafy greens, which are especially supportive to the heart chakra as they contain life force, layers and depth.
Contains raw veggies, which are especially balancing to the heart chakra as they contain balancing cooling properties.
Contains green colored foods, which support and balance the heart chakra.
This recipe contains sea plants, linking the earth and water elements, which in turn nourishes the root, sacral & throat chakras.
This is a sauce/dressing recipe, linking earth and water elements, while also connecting the other chakras together with the throat chakra.
$ A Short Note on Swaps or Ingredients:
*While I cannot guarantee that using these swaps will yield the same flavors I have create in this recipe, these swaps should generally work well! *
Nutritional yeast are flakes of yeast that have a very cheesy like taste and is full of B vitamins. It is a great non dairy alternative to add a cherry taste to any dish!
Dulse flakes are needed for this recipe. You can find them in your local health food store in the Asian section. If you cannot find pulse flakes, nori flakes will also work!
$ Equipment Needed to Create this Recipe:
small mixing bowl
medium mixing bowl
a good knife
Simple Kale & Avocado Salad with Lemony Dulse Dressing
(gluten free, vegan, & AIP/paleo)
Prep time: 5-10 minutes Cook time: none Yield: 2-3
1 bunch of lacinato kale, spine removed and leaves torn into bite sized pieces
1 large avocado, cubed
1 lemon, juice of
3 tbsp. nutritional yeast
2 tbsp. dulse granules or flakes (you can also use kelp flakes)
1-2 tbsp. extra virgin avocado oil or EVOO
A pinch of sea salt
Water to thin the dressing to desired consistency
How to Create this Recipe:
First, wash your kale. Then remove the spine and tear the leaves into bite sized pieces. Place into a medium sized bowl. Now, you can either continue on with the raw kale as your salad base, or add 1 tbsp. of water to the bowl with the kale leaves and microwave for 20-30 seconds to slightly cook the leaves. Remove excess water from bowl before continuing (the picture above is made with the wilted kale; it’s delicious either way!)
Next, add your chopped avocado to the bowl of kale.
In a small bowl, mix all your ingredients for the dressing. I like my dressing on the thicker side so I only add about a ½-1 tbsp of water. Once you find your desired consistency, pour it over your kale and toss to coat completely.
That’s all! Enjoy!!
Serving Size: 1 (based off of 2 servings total)
Fat: 25 g
Carbs: 37 g
Protein: 14 g
*All nutritional information are estimations and will vary.