This Kale & Peach Salad is a refreshing and delicious way to enjoy more fresh summer produce. Kale leaves are tossed in a simple peach salad dressing, then loaded up with more fresh peaches, red onion, and creamy avocado. It’s one of those recipes that actually makes kale taste good.
This Peach Vinaigrette is the perfect recipe for when you have a bruised peach on hand. If it’s not pretty enough to eat on its own, you can cut off the bruises and throw it in a blender with olive oil, apple cider, a touch of honey, and salt and pepper.
The texture from the peach makes the dressing have a silky, almost velvety texture, while using only a fraction of the oil or sweetener that traditional dressing recipes call for.
Why You’ll Love It
- It’s loaded with antioxidants. Kale is a great source of quercetin and kaempferol, which may help to lower blood pressure and lower the risk of certain cancers and cardiovascular disease, in part due to their anti-inflammatory properties.
- It may help promote heart health. The flavonoids found in peaches may help to lower risk factors for heart disease, including lowering “bad” LDL cholesterol.
- It may help prevent certain cancers. Kale, and other cruciferous veggies, contains a substance called indole-3-carbinol which may have anti-cancer activity. It also contains sulforaphane, which may help to lower the risk of breast cancer.
- It’s easy to make. The dressing takes just minutes to whip up in a blender, so you’ll be eating this salad in no time.
- It’s refreshing. The juicy peaches and creamy avocado keep each bite a little different, and paired with the kale this salad just screams “summer.”
Since kale can be a difficult veggie to enjoy, this salad is the perfect recipe to incorporate into your week. I hope you’ll love it as much as I do!
Need more kale recipes? Try my kale smoothie, kale Caesar salad, or kale pesto for more variety.
How to Make It
1. Prepare the dressing. Add the peaches, vinegar, olive oil, honey, salt & pepper to a blender, and blend until smooth. Taste, and adjust any seasoning as needed, then set it aside.
2. Chop the kale. For the best texture, it’s important that you remove the tough stems from the kale leaves. Be sure to wash them well to remove any dirt, then hold the stem with one hand, and use your other hand to pull the leaves along the stem, ripping the tender leaves off as you go.
Once the stems are removed, you can rip or chop the kale leaves into smaller pieces. (Pro tip: save the kale stems for juicing later!)
3. Massage the salad. Kale has the best texture when you literally massage the dressing into the kale leaves. Pour a generous amount of dressing over the kale leaves in a large mixing bowl, and don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty! (Or just tongs to toss it well.)
You probably won’t use all of the dressing in one sitting, but it will keep well in the fridge for an easy meal later.
4. Add the rest of the toppings! Once the kale is well dressed, you can add on the sliced peaches, red onion, creamy avocado, and cooked chickpeas for extra filling protein. Feel free to add any other toppings you love, too.
Toss gently and serve right away for the best taste and texture.
Kale salad keeps well in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days, even when dressed. The other toppings might get soggy sitting in the dressing for too long, so I recommend slicing only what you will eat in one sitting for the toppings.
The leftover dressing will keep well in the fridge for up to 4 days, so you can enjoy it over other salads during your week, too.
- Which type of kale works best for salad? I’ve made this salad with both dino (or lacinato) kale and curly kale leaves, and either option works well. I used curly kale in these photos, because I think it looks prettier, so keep that in mind if you’re making this for company.
- When are peaches in season? Peach season runs from May through September, so that’s the prime time to make this salad. Look for peaches that give slightly when you press on them, to know they are ripe.
- Can I swap the vinegar? If you don’t have apple cider vinegar on hand, you can use red wine vinegar or white vinegar with similar results.
- Need a vegan recipe? Swap the honey for maple syrup. Since honey is more sweet than maple syrup, you might want to use 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons in total for this swap. Or, you can swap it for agave if that’s something you keep in your pantry.
- Change up the fruit! If you don’t have peaches on hand, nectarines would be a perfect substitute. You could also make this with fresh mango when they are in season.
If you follow food combining principles, this salad will combine as a “fruit meal” if you leave off the chickpeas, because the avocado and peaches are both fruits, and can be paired with non-starchy veggies.
Kale & Peach Salad
- 1 peach , sliced (5 oz; 136 grams)
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (27 grams)
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (27 grams)
- 2 tablespoons water (29 grams)
- 1 tablespoon honey (20 grams)
- 1/4 teaspoon each salt & pepper (2 grams)
Kale & Peach Salad
- 1 bunch kale , stems removed (7 to 8 ounces; 8 cups)
- 1 ripe peach , chopped (5 ounces)
- 1/2 avocado , sliced (4 ounces)
- 1/2 red onion , diced (5 ounces)
- 1 cup cooked chickpeas (6 ounces; optional)
- Prepare the Peach Vinaigrette: Combine the peach, vinegar, oil, water, honey, salt, and pepper in a blender. Blend until very smooth, then set aside.
- To prepare the salad, remove the tough stems from the kale leaves and rip the kale into small, bite-sized pieces. Transfer the kale to a large bowl and pour a generous amount of dressing over the top. (You won't use all of the dressing here; start with a 1/4 cup.)
- Use your hands, or tongs, to massage the dressing into the kale, until it feels tender. Then add on the rest of the toppings, including the sliced peach, avocado, red onion, and chickpeas. Toss gently, then serve right away, with extra dressing on top, if desired.
- This salad is best enjoyed right away because the toppings will get soggy the longer they sit, but you can store the dressed kale in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Leftover dressing will keep well in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
If you try this Peach Salad, please leave a comment below and let me know what you think! And if you make any modifications, I love to hear about those, too. We can all benefit from your experience.
Reader Feedback: What’s your favorite way to enjoy peaches? Be sure to also try my Peach Ice Cream, Gluten-free Peach Crisp, and Peaches & Cream Ice Pops.
Questions and Reviews
I have never heard of massaging kale – does this make it nicer for salads? I have tried kale salad raw found it too spikey so sounds like i need to give it some tlc!
Hi, Any food handled with loving care will improve its flavor. Also I find that steaming kale for any recipe for just a quick minute takes out a bit of the bitterness. Kathy
The pictures looks fantastic. Thanks for another awesome looking and sounding recipe, Megan! xx
Mmm, this sounds amazing! I love roasting or sautéing stone fruits with a little cinnamon and ginger.
Another delicious recipe!!! Thank you!
I just love biting into a nice, juicy peach. My second favorite is peach tea. =)
Peaches that are sliced up with a dollop of homemade, real whipped cream (ok, maybe more than just a dollop, maybe a whole lot of it) on top of angel food cake. Pure bliss.
A wise old lady in her 90’s once told me to be very careful about peaches because they stain your clothes. I didn’t believe her because they seem so harmless. She was right! Peach stains are nearly impossible to remove from your clothing so be careful =)
The only way to digest kale is to ferment it. Cows have 4 stomachs and they won’t eat it, so I don’t!
Thanks to your comment, I did a bit of research and it is interesting. http://health.heraldtribune.com/2012/09/25/kale-good-nutrition-for-you-just-dont-overdo/
I’ve never had peaches in a light salad before. This recipe has made me reconsider incorporating some peaches into my kale salad.
my daughter and i thought this was AMAZING! i added a chicken breast to it and that was lunch. thanks!
This salad is GREAT!!!! Im going to try making the vinaigrette with Mango also. Love the recipe
Yum! I love peaches and this looks so amazing! I love to put peaches into pumpkin bread!
I made the dressing and it just tasted like vinegar. It was a pretty color but I threw it out.
I just wanted to tell you that this recipe is amazing. I love homemade dressings and find it difficult to make creamy ones and this one is simply delicious. Thank you very much!
I love everything you post! I spotlight a lot of your recipes on my blog, too (always linking back to the site for the full recipe, of course!). Sending IIN love 🙂
I thought you weren’t supposed to combine fruit with other foods…I’m confused; can someone help me?
Fresh fruit can combine with leafy greens, either in a salad or in green smoothies. The key is not adding more dense items, like nuts, meat, or cheese. (Avocado is okay, since it’s technically a fruit, too.)
Thank you for clarifying!
Just made this salad with the dressing – Wonderfully yummy! Added some leftover grilled chicken for protein. Thanks so much for your awesome recipes! Have been a fan of yours for a while. 🙂
I’ve made this recipe for several summer parties, and it is a hit every time! Thanks so much for posting. I also featured a little “how to de-stem kale” portion in a video I posted along with my review of the recipe: http://rachelsnourishingkitchen.wordpress.com/2014/07/03/peachy-keen-kale-salad/. Thanks again for another winner!!
I always mix fruits with salads.
This is gonna be my next.
I needed a good vinaigrette recipe using peaches and this did the trick!
What more could you ask for? 👍🏽👏🏼
Made this salad for dinner tonight and it was so freaking good. I tend to not like the taste and texture of kale, but the dressing makes it possible for me to enjoy multiple servings of this kale salad. I also added some crumble feta and bacon for some extra protein. They were great additions to this already tasty meal.
This is the best summer salad!
Thank you, Megan: This salad is delicious and easy to make. The salad dressing is so tasty.
Amazing summer salad. So many beautiful peaches available right now from our local farmers. Peach and Kale! Perfect combination!
This looks delicious! I want one right this second!
The salad was delicious. I mixed in some leftover quinoa for added texture and nutrition.
The dressing is so yummy
Great dresssing and a delicious way for the whole family to enjoy kale.
Very yummy and easy!!! I will keep making this as long as I can get good peaches 🍑 then I will try a different fruit!