This Lentils Over Kale and Fresh Herb Salad is a simple, elegant dish. Lentils, cooked until tender, are tossed in a tart, bright dressing made from warm spices, lemon peel, and champagne vinegar, and served over a bed of hearty kale and fresh herbs.
When shopping for lentils, look for Black lentils, French du Puy, or brown or green lentils. Red, orange, and yellow split varieties break up during cooking, and don’t work well for this salad.
Are you looking for a way to use red lentils? Give our Dal-Inspired Red Lentils recipe a try.
Lentils Over Kale and Fresh Herb Salad: A Plant-Based Whole30 Lunch Recipe
Lentils Over Kale and Fresh Herb Salad
For the Lentils
- 1½ cups black lentils
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ tsp coarse salt
- ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp coriander seeds
- 1½ tsp cumin seeds
- 6 tbsp chopped almonds
- 2 strips lemon peel (not zest)
- ¼ cup champagne vinegar
- ¾ tsp coarse salt
- ½ tsp coarse black pepper
For the Salad
- 1 bunch Tuscan or curly kale ,stems trimmed
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 12 cherry tomatoes ,halved
- 12 pitted Castelvetrano olives ,halved
- 1 green onions ,green portion only chopped
- ½ cup chopped fresh herbs such as parsley and/or basil
Make the Lentils
- In a large saucepan, combine the lentils and bay leaves. Add 3 cups water and the salt. Bring to a boil, covered, over medium heat. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until lentils are just tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain the lentils; remove and discard bay leaves.
- In a small skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the seeds, almonds, and lemon peel. Cook until the seeds are lightly toasted, about 3 minutes. Carefully remove the lemon peel. Pour the seasoned oil over the cooked lentils. Add the vinegar, salt, and black pepper; stir to combine.
Make the Salad
- Pat the kale dry after cleaning. Chop the kale into bite-size pieces and place in a large bowl. Drizzle with the oil and, using your fingers, gently massage kale until it just begins to wilt, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, olives, scallion(s), and fresh herbs. Toss the salad to combine.
- To serve, divide salad among 3 plates; top with lentils.