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Super Protein Kale Caesar Salad [Vegan]

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If someone asks you where you get your protein, send them straight to this recipe. This is a salad that is definitely not lacking in protein, taste or vital nutrients! It’s fresh, quick, easy to make, filling and oh so good for you. And if you thought salads were only for summer time, think again – this is one wholesome, comforting bowl of goodness that you’ll want to enjoy whatever the weather. Hail to the Super Protein Kale Caesar!

Super Protein Kale Caesar Salad [Vegan]



Cook Time



For the tempeh bacon:

  • 7 oz tempeh
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke
  • 3 tbsp tamari, or other good soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • optional: 1 tsp melted coconut oil (1/2 tsp solid)
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika

For the salad:

  • 8 ounces kale / cavolo nero + 1 tsp lemon juice, 1 tsp good oil (such as flaxseed or olive oil), ½ tsp Himalayan pink salt (or other good salt)
  • 7 oz chestnut mushrooms + 1 tsp good oil, 3 tsp lemon juice, 1 tsp liquid aminos (or soy sauce), pinch cayenne pepper
  • 7 oz vine or baby tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 2.5 oz fresh basil
  • 1 avocado, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tbsp golden linseeds
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds

For the Caesar dressing:

  • 2.5 oz pre-soaked cashews
  • 2 3/4 oz water
  • 1 tbsp good oil
  • 2 tbsp lemon or lime juice
  • 1½ tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
  • 4 cloves garlic, roasted
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • salt & pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F
  2. Prepare the tempeh by slicing as thinly as you can. Lay the slices carefully in a dish, combine the marinade ingredients in a bowl and pour over. Set aside.
  3. Take the leafy bits of the kale by cutting away the the tough centre stalk and combine these in a large bowl with the oil, salt and lemon juice. Massage together for a minute or so, as if you were kneading bread.
  4. Wash, pat dry and slice the mushrooms. Combine these in a separate bowl with the oil, lemon, aminos and cayenne.
  5. Arrange the tempeh bacon slices on a parchment-lined tray and drizzle over any remaining marinade. Place on the top shelf of the oven and cook for 20 minutes, turning half way through. (On turning the tempeh, put the four garlic cloves for the Caesar dressing on the tray. These should be unpeeled, but with the root end removed.)
  6. Take the tempeh from the oven and peel the roasted garlic.
  7. To make the dressing, put all the ingredients (not forgetting the garlic) in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Test for seasoning and adjust as necessary.
  8. To assemble the salad, add the tomatoes, avocado, mushrooms, basil, pumpkin and linseeds to the kale and give it a gentle stir.
  9. Once on plates, crumble on the tempeh (or keep as slices), sprinkle with the sesame and chia seeds and drizzle over the dressing.


Soak the cashew nuts in water at least a couple of hours in advance - this can even be done overnight and kept in the fridge
It's really easy to make this recipe to your own tastes and what you have at home: swap red wine vinegar for apple cider vinegar, choose a different unrefined seed oil or use a gluten free alternative to soy sauce.





Delicious, yet simple whole foods recipes that will make you feel like a pro chef. Laura Hemmington writes for a small publishing house in London and is the blogger and creator of The Whole Ingredient, where you can find delicious yet simple whole food recipes. When not in the kitchen or immersed in a notebook, she can be found seeking out nature and history across the capital, and in the vegan-friendly establishments that she finds along the way.



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