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Kalyn's Kitchen

Baby Kale Taco Salad

Baby Kale Taco Salad with Chile-Lime Dressing has my favorite taco salad flavors and it’s perfect for low-carb eaters who are avoiding dairy!  

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Baby Kale Taco Salad title photo

Ever since I fell in love with baby kale, I’ve had fun experimenting with it in different salad combinations, and this Baby Kale Taco Salad with Chile-Lime Dressing is another baby kale salad that I loved. Besides the tasty baby kale the salad has peppers, olives, avocado, and spicy ground beef, yum!

This taco salad is low in carb, dairy-free and gluten-free. And making the salad dairy-free also makes it suitable for the category where I put recipes that I think Can Be Paleo, for those who are interested. If you don’t care about Paleo eating, you could add a little grated low-fat cheese to this Baby Kale Paleo Taco Salad; either way it’s delicious!

Baby Kale Taco Salad process shots collage

How to Make Baby Kale Taco Salad:

(Scroll down for complete recipe with nutritional information.)

  1. Cook a pound of ground beef in a little olive oil until it’s nicely browned, breaking apart with a turner as it cooks.
  2. Then add 2 tablespoons of Kalyn’s Taco Seasoning and a cup of water and let the meat simmer until all the liquid is evaporated.
  3. Be sure to cook until the bottom of the pan looks dry, or the salad will be soggy!
  4. Take the taco meat out of the pan and let it cool slightly in a bowl.
  5. Whisk together the 2 T lime juice, chile powder, ground cumin (affiliate link), Spike Seasoning (affiliate link) or use your favorite seasoning (Spike is not Paleo or gluten-free), and olive oil to make the dressing.
  6. Cut up the red pepper strips and grape tomatoes. (I thought the yellow tomatoes were pretty in the salad, but red ones would also be fine.)
  7. Drain a can of sliced olives (or use regular olive and slice by hand.)
  8. Cut up the avocado (or two avocados if desired) and toss with 1 T lime juice.
  9. Wash the baby kale in a salad spinner if needed, spin dry, and toss with the dressing.
  10. Add the red pepper strips, tomatoes, and taco meat and toss again.
  11. Then add the diced avocado and gently toss again.
  12. I saved a few avocado pieces to garnish the top of each salad. Enjoy!

Baby Kale Taco Salad close-up photo

More Tasty Dairy-Free Salads:

Arugula Cucumber Salad with Lemon Dressing ~ Elana’s Pantry
Summer Tomato Salad with Avocado, Tuna, Cilantro, and Lime ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Bite-Sized Arugula Steak Tomato Salad ~ Cheeky Kitchen
Middle Eastern Tomato Salad ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Cucumber Salad with Tahini Dressing ~ Simply Recipes

Weekend Food Prep:

This recipe has been added to a new category called Weekend Food Prep  to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!

Baby Kale Taco Salad with Chile-Lime Dressing

Baby Kale Taco Salad with Chile-Lime Dressing

Yield 4 salads
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 27 minutes

Baby Kale Taco Salad with Chile-Lime Dressing has all my favorite taco salad flavors in a nutritious salad with kale!

Ingredients

Salad Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 2 T Kalyn’s Taco Seasoning (see notes)
  • 1 cup water
  • 5 oz. baby kale leaves, washed and spun dry if needed
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • one 6.5 oz. can sliced olives (see notes)
  • 1 avocados, diced (see notes)
  • 1 T fresh squeezed lime juice (see notes)

Dressing Ingredients:

  • 2 T fresh squeezed lime juice (see notes)
  • 1/2 tsp. ground chile powder (see notes)
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. Spike Seasoning (see notes)
  • 3 T olive oil

Instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in a heavy frying pan, crumble the ground beef into the pan and cook over medium-high heat until the beef is browned, breaking apart with a turner as it cooks. (I use an old-fashioned potato masher to break the meat apart!)
  2. When the beef is well browned, sprinkle in the Kalyn’s Taco Seasoning (or your own taco seasoning) and add the water, stir to combine, and simmer on low heat until all the liquid is evaporated, about 8-10 minutes.
  3. When the bottom of the pan is completely dry, remove the taco meat and let it cool in a bowl until it’s just slightly warm.
  4. While the beef cooks, whisk together the 2 T lime juice, ground chile powder, ground cumin (affiliate link), Spike Seasoning (affiliate link) (if using, or other all-purpose seasoning), and olive oil to make the dressing.
  5. Wash the baby kale and spin dry if needed. (I like to snip off the larger stems, but it’s completely optional.) Cut the red pepper into strips and cut the cherry tomatoes in half. Cut the avocado(s) into cubes and toss with the 1 T of lime juice.
  6. Put the kale leaves into a bowl that’s big enough to hold all the salad ingredients and toss with the dressing. Add the slightly cooled taco meat, red pepper strips, and tomato halves and toss again.
  7. Then add the avocado pieces and gently toss again. (I save a few avocado pieces to garnish each salad.) Serve right away.

Notes

I use my fresh-frozen lime juice for recipes like this. I like ground Ancho chile (affiliate link) but any ground chiles or even chili powder will work. Use your favorite commercial taco seasoning if you prefer. If you can’t find the large cans of sliced olives, just slice a can of regular olives. Use two avocados if they're small or if you prefer more avocado. Spike is not Paleo or gluten-free so use your favorite seasoning as needed.

If this makes more than you can use at one meal, prepare all the ingredients, then refrigerate the ingredients separately and toss ingredients with the dressing right when you’re ready to eat. You may want to let the dressing and taco meat come to room temperature for a few minutes if it’s been refrigerated.

There are ingredients in this salad that have some carbs, but many ingredients are high in fiber, so it's quite low in net carbs.

Recipe created by Kalyn.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 576Total Fat: 45gSaturated Fat: 11gUnsaturated Fat: 30gCholesterol: 101mgSodium: 456mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 6.3gSugar: 3gProtein: 33g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

I'd love to see your pictures if you make this recipe. Share on social media with the hashtag #kalynskitchen so I can see how it turned out for you!

Baby Kale Taco Salad square thumbnail photo

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
This Baby Kale Taco Salad is suitable for Paleo or Whole 30 if you replace Spike with an approved seasoning and use approved ground beef. (Spike is also not gluten-free.) It’s also great for traditional low-carb or low-glycemic diet plans for anyone who’s avoiding dairy. If you use lean ground beef and limit the avocado, this salad would make a tasty and nutritious meal for any phase of the original South Beach Diet.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Salad Recipes to find more recipes like this one. Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Pinterest image of Baby Kale Taco Salad

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    17 Comments on “Baby Kale Taco Salad”

  1. Pingback: Over 30 Whole30 Recipes that Everyone Will Love | This Gal Cooks

  2. Such a beautiful salad, Kalyn! I has the perfect combination of ingredients and flavors. I'm a big fan of baby kale too, so I've got to try this recipe. Great post!

    Bill @ http://www.southernboydishes.com

  3. Sounds amazing!! My son is into paleo eating so I will have to send him here!

  4. Jeanne, that sounds good to me; so glad you liked it!

  5. I made this last night and loved it! The only changes I made were to add the pepper and some onion to the ground beef as it cooked. It was awesome!

  6. Yes, duh. Thanks for catching that, will fix right now.

  7. Making this right now – the olive oil goes in the dressing right? Smelling good in here!

  8. I am a huge kale fan and love pairing it with fresh citrus! Cannot wait to try this yummy recipe, Kalyn!

  9. Thanks Alyssa, so glad you like it!

  10. This is a perfect dish Kalyn! I love the flavors and such a great use for ground meat!

  11. Thanks Lydia! Paleo is so confusing; seems like everyone does it differently. But the most important thing is no processed food. I couldn't do it for long, no cheese!

  12. I don't know much about paleo, but I do know that this salad looks great.

  13. Thanks Pam, I loved the combination.

  14. I don't "do" paleo, but I do good recipes and this looks good!