Creamy Avocado Kale Power Salad with Citrus and Beets

Winter Kale Power Salad @Carascravings-3

At 33 weeks, I’ve kind of reached this point in my pregnancy where I don’t really feel like talking about it. Not because it sucks. Oh no, quite the opposite. You see, *most* women don’t really want to hear from one who never had any morning sickness. Never had to nap after a day of work instead of hitting the gym. Never found herself eating nothing but carbs. And in the third trimester, is still moving around quite comfortably. Doing deadlifts and chinups, even (with a band, obviously. If my pregnancy sucked, I think I’d be a lot more comfortable sharing about it.

Whether it’s good luck, good genes, or good healthy habits, I don’t know, but I feel thankful every day to be feeling well and getting closer to meeting this baby.

But just so you know it isn’t all rainbows and puppies (though my doggy does enjoy spending an exorbitant amount of time in my lap) I did have at least one aversion. Something I was so hooked on eating for lunch just about every day for like 7 months prior was suddenly something I wanted nothing to do with. And that would be salads. Specifically, salads with beets. Fortunately, salad became appealing again in the second trimester, but beets were still a no-go. My poor husband was wondering, “who is this chic?” but probably secretly happy that he wasn’t spending an hour every week helping me prep my salad veggies. (Yes, he used to do that for me. He’s a keeper.)

As of last week, not only can I eat salads, but I actually craved one. But the thing about salads during pregnancy (well, anytime, but really during pregnancy) is that they have to be something you can really chomp on. No wimp,y limpy greens in my bowl, thankyouverymuch. And there better be some hefty fillers in there to satisfy me and the babe. Enter chewy kale coated with a  creamy avocado dressing. Rounded out with sweet clementines, earthy roasted beets (finally, beets!) and nutrient-dense sunflower seeds. I don’t know where that last one came from since I can’t remember ever buying them, but somehow I knew they’d be perfect here. I found some sprouted, dehydrated ones that made me feel all, “sunflower seeds, where have you been all my life?” Totally get the sprouted, dehydrated variety if you can.

And if you’re currently pregnant and sad that you’re missing some of your favorite foods, don’t worry, they might make a comeback before you meet your lil’ one. I’m pretty psyched that mine did.

Winter Kale Power Salad @Carascravings-4

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Creamy Avocado Kale Power Salad with Citrus and Beets

Yield: 2 large servings

Chewy kale tossed with a creamy, garlic-y avocado dressing, sweet winter citrus and earthy roasted beets.


1/2 of a ripe avocado
1 clove of garlic, peeled
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1-2 tablespoons water
freshly ground black pepper
~6 cups chopped kale
1 tablespoon olive oil
big pinch of kosher salt
2 seedless clementines, peeled and segmented
2 small or 1 medium beet, roasted, peeled and diced
3 tablespoons shelled sunflower seeds


In a small food processor or blender, combine the avocado, garlic, lemon juice, mustard, and vinegar. Process until smooth. Add 1-2 tablespoons water to reach a creamy consistency. Season to taste with freshly ground black pepper.

Place the kale in a large bowl and drizzle it with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Using clean hands, massage the oil and salt into the kale for about 2-3 minutes, until kale is wilted. Pour the avocado dressing over the kale and toss to coat.

Toss with the clementine segments, diced beets and sunflower seeds. Divide among serving bowls.

Cara Lyons,

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15 Responses to “Creamy Avocado Kale Power Salad with Citrus and Beets”

  1. 1

    Hallie @ Daily Bites — January 25, 2013 @ 11:49 am Reply

    I’m so glad you’re able to enjoy salads again, Cara! My sister had major vegetable aversions during her pregnancy and unfortunately they last all 9 months. I LOVE the look of this salad! 🙂

  2. 2

    foodwanderings — January 25, 2013 @ 12:47 pm Reply

    Oh Cara, I got all the ingredients here in my kitchen. A perfectly sunny winter salad. I love every aspect of it, the color and the flavors.

  3. 3

    Kerstin — January 25, 2013 @ 3:15 pm Reply

    No morning sickness so maybe you’re having a boy, at least according to that old wives’ tale… 🙂 So glad you’re feeling well! I was craving salads at the end of my pregnancy too and this looks like such a lovely one!

  4. 4

    Kelsey — January 25, 2013 @ 4:52 pm Reply

    Love this combination! The colors are beautiful and I bet the textures are amazing. So glad you’re feeling your salads again!

  5. 5

    Wendy @ CookingQuinoa — January 26, 2013 @ 2:29 pm Reply

    Lucky girl! I’m 29 weeks and am having a time of it. The carb cravings, eating things I never eat, low energy …you name it. It won’t be much longer now though. (I have myself convinced it’s only 9 more weeks because both of my boys came at 38 weeks. Everyone will be laughing if I’m 42 weeks and still pregnant….)
    I hit a point where I couldn’t eat salads, but luckily that has come back for me too! This one looks amazing – can’t wait to give it a try.

  6. 6

    Rachel — January 26, 2013 @ 2:59 pm Reply

    Cara, I am so glad you posted this so that now I have the recipe. I really enjoyed this salad when you served it the other night and I am looking forward to making it myself.

  7. 7

    Kate — January 26, 2013 @ 11:13 pm Reply

    My pregnancy was likewise easy – no morning sickness, no fatigue – I went running the morning I was induced!

    But I should warn you – I did need to be induced. I joked that the reason I had such an easy pregnancy was because my body didn’t know I was pregnant, and so didn’t realize it was supposed to be sending a baby out.

  8. 8

    Joanne — January 27, 2013 @ 2:01 pm Reply

    I am eternally amazed that you have been having absolutely NO problems with this pregnancy, only because I’ve heard such horror stories from others. I’m sure it’s because you live such a healthy well-balanced lifestyle. 🙂 LOVING this salad and that you’re back to your normal eating ways!

  9. 9

    Mila — January 28, 2013 @ 4:11 pm Reply

    this dressing is incredible – what a fantastic combination of flavours. Really glad your pregnancy is moving along well and inspiring you to post these great recipes! Thanks so much!

  10. 10

    Cut `n Clean Greens — January 28, 2013 @ 11:10 pm Reply

    Wow is that a pretty salad! Healthy AND beautiful!

    We’re going to feature this on our Facebook page and link here so people can see how you made it, and your lovely photography. If you wish, come LIKE us on Facebook for more recipes and tips on super healthy greens like kale, chard, beet, mustard, turnip, collard, escarole, dandelion and other green leafies.

    –Your friendly Southern California farmers at Cut `n Clean Greens

  11. 11

    Shannon — January 29, 2013 @ 2:21 pm Reply

    horray for beets! ha. there was a time i’d never say that! glad things have been going well, you certainly look fabulous!!

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  14. 12

    Ronnie — February 26, 2013 @ 6:51 pm Reply

    Love this salad! Have made it 4 times already!

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