Home > Salads > Kale Couscous Salad Kale Couscous Salad June 2, 2020 | 16 Comments SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Jump to Recipe This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy. Kale Couscous Salad is packed with nutrients, is filling, and — most importantly — is loaded with flavor! This salad is made with fresh kale, cooked couscous, protein-filled black beans, juicy mango, creamy avocado, crisp red pepper, and salty sunflower seeds. All the ingredients are tossed in a punchy lemon vinaigrette. After you get hooked on Kale Couscous Salad, be sure to try our Kale and Quinoa Salad. Kale Couscous Salad This is one of my all-time favorite salad recipes. It has so much flavor and texture, and is wonderfully light and refreshing. It’s also surprisingly filling, thanks to the protein in the black beans, healthy fats in the avocado and sunflower seeds, and nutrients in all the other ingredients. I never used to love kale, but after learning how to prepare it in a flavorful way, I can’t get enough of it now. We’ll talk more about that in a minute. How to make this salad Prep the kale: The kale gets prepared first and I explain how exactly we do that below. Make the dressing: This dressing couldn’t be easier! Simply add all the ingredients to a jar with a lid and shake until combined. You may need to use a spoon to stir up the honey before shaking it, as the honey has a tendency to stick to the bottom and not integrate into the dressing at first. Whip up the couscous: I love adding couscous to salads because it adds flavor and texture in minutes; it’s so quick to make! It’ll be ready in about 5 minutes or less; simply bring the small amount of water to a boil, add the couscous, and remove it from the heat. After a minute or two, it’s ready to fluff up with a fork and toss with the kale. There are lots of different types of couscous, so you want to make sure to get the small couscous so it cooks up in this quick amount of time. Prep the other salad ingredients: Once the kale and dressing are ready, all that’s left is chopping the other ingredients that go in this salad: dice a red pepper, chop a mango (here’s a great guide on how to cut a mango!), drain and rinse the black beans, and thinly slice or chop the avocado. How to Boost Kale’s Flavor So what is their secret to delicious kale? Massaging it. I know, it sounds weird and takes a little extra effort but it is well worth it for this Kale Couscous Salad. Start by removing the thick stems and then very thinly slice (ribbon) the kale. The smaller the shreds of kale, the better! Once it’s all chopped, toss it in a colander (or even better, use the base of a salad spinner!) and give it a quick rinse. Next, sprinkle some fine sea salt on top and, using your hands, rub and massage the salt into the kale. Massage the kale for about a minute and then give it another quick rinse. Allow the kale to dry completely before adding it to the salad (a salad spinner speeds that process up quite a bit). QUICK TIP That big, thick stem on kale is really tough. It’s not hard to remove it, though. You can cut with a paring knife, or shuck the kale! With one hand, hold a leaf at the bottom by the thickest part of the stem. With the other hand, gently pinch the leaf with your index finger and thumb and pull it up and off along the stem. Easy peasy! Kale Couscous Salad tips Truly, ripe mango and avocado are game changers for this salad; it’s far more flavorful and creamy when both ingredients are fully ripe. I highly recommend honey mangoes for this salad (also known as Ataulfo mangoes). They’re sweeter and creamier than regular mangoes and don’t have the typical fibers throughout. Adjust to preference: We like this salad loaded with toppings (not just a bunch of kale). If you’d prefer more kale or less of a certain ingredient, this salad is very forgiving. You may also want less of the dressing (we like lots!), so add slowly and to your preference. Add cheese: If you love cheese in your salads, I’d recommend goat cheese or feta cheese in Kale Couscous Salad. Use salted roasted sunflower seeds: If salted, the seeds add a hit of salt which makes the perfect finishing touch to this salad. Storage Kale Couscous Salad stores well in the fridge for a couple of days, but it is truthfully best the same day it’s made. While most salads need to be eaten soon after being dressed, this one sits well with its dressing for up to a day– the kale is heartier than most leafy greens. More tasty and healthy salads Apple Salad with an apple cider vinaigrette Olive Garden Salad with an Italian vinaigrette Greek Salad with an oregano vinaigrette BBQ Chicken Salad with a creamy cilantro dressing Roasted Veggie Salad Panzanella salad FOLLOW ALONG! Subscribe to my newsletter and follow along on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram for the latest updates, recipes and content. Kale Couscous Salad 5 from 4 votes - Review this recipe A simple and healthy salad: Kale Couscous Salad mixed with a lemon vinaigrette makes for a flavorful combination. SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Print Recipe Kale Couscous Salad 5 from 4 votes - Review this recipe SAVE TO RECIPE BOX Print Recipe A simple and healthy salad: Kale Couscous Salad mixed with a lemon vinaigrette makes for a flavorful combination. Course lunch, Salad Cuisine American Keyword Kale Couscous Salad Prep Time 25 minutes minutes Total Time 25 minutes minutes Servings 4 -6 Calories 254kcal Cost $6.34 Ingredients▢ 5 cups (loosely measured; about 8 ounces) kale▢ 1/3 cup couscous + 1/2 cup water▢ 1 teaspoon olive oil▢ 1 cup diced mangoes (I recommend Honey mangoes!)▢ 1 cup diced red pepper▢ 1 can (15 ounces) black beans▢ 1 small avocado, diced (optional)▢ 1/4 cup roasted and salted sunflower seedsDressing▢ 3 tablespoons olive oil▢ 1/4 cup lemon juice freshly squeezed is best▢ 1 and 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar▢ 1 tablespoon honey▢ 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard▢ Salt and pepper InstructionsKALE: Start by removing the thick stems and then very thinly slice (ribbon) the kale. The smaller the shreds of kale, the better! Once it's all chopped, put it in a colander (or the base of a salad spinner) and give it a quick rinse. Next, sprinkle some fine sea salt on top (about 1/2 to 1 full teaspoon) and use your hands to rub and massage the salt into the kale. Massage the kale for about a minute and then give it another quick rinse. Allow the kale to dry completely before using in the salad or spin in the salad spinner to quickly dry.COUSCOUS: Meanwhile, prepare the couscous according to the package directions using water and olive oil. Add water and oil to your smallest pot, bring to a boil, remove, stir in the couscous, cover with the lid, let steam a few minutes, remove lid, and fluff couscous with a fork.VEGGIES AND FRUIT: Remove the peel and pit of a mango and chop the fruit. Remove the stems and seeds of a red pepper and chop that as well. Drain and rinse the black beans. Remove the skin and pit of an avocado and thinly slice or chop if using.DRESSING: In a jar with a lid, combine all of the dressing ingredients and shake until they are combined. Season to taste with salt and pepper; I add 1/4 teaspoon of each. (You may need to stir the honey into the dressing and shake it again.) ASSEMBLY: Toss completely dried kale with couscous in a large bowl. Add the mango, red pepper, black beans, avocado, and sunflower seed. Drizzle dressing (as much as desired) on salad and toss. Add any additional dressing as desired and serve. Recipe NotesNote 1: Storing the salad: If you don't plan on eating all of the salad the same day you make it, reserve the dressing and pour it only on the serving you are going to eat. This keeps the salad from getting soggy. Nutrition FactsCalories: 254kcal | Carbohydrates: 32.9g | Protein: 7.6g | Fat: 7.6g | Sodium: 279.2mg | Fiber: 7.5g | Sugar: 10.6g We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed. DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE? I love hearing from you when you've made one of my recipes! Tag me on Instagram at @ChelseasMessyApron or leave me a comment below.