Who doesn’t love a good caesar salad! That creamy dressing and crunchy croutons are to die for! I always used to get this out as a kid with chicken on top thinking I was getting the “healthiest” option on the menu. I don’t like to think of foods as healthy or unhealthy anymore, but rather more or less nourishing, a classic caesar salad was definitely short of the most nourishing thing on the menu. Doesn’t make it any less tasty though!
So with the love of caesar salads in mind, I created this quick and easy version topped with blackened salmon. That is more nourishing than it’s non-Whole30 cousin. You could easily swap the salmon for chicken or any other protein. This version is Whole30 so dairy free, sugar free and gluten free, but I promise it’s still super tasty. Not the same, I know, but a good substitution! For the salad dressing I used The Primal Kitchen Caesar dressing which is Whole30 approved. There are definitely some other brands out there so, per usual, read your labels if you’re worried about the dairy or sugar.
The salad features kale, obviously, but also roasted tomatoes and sliced almonds to get that texture you find in a caesar salad. I really love the taste of cooked tomatoes, and the sweetness you get from these roasted tomatoes adds a brightness to this salad that is very much needed. I’ve said this before in my Wing Burger Salad post, but you must massage your kale. It will change your opinion of kale forever. Even though we quickly saute it here, I promise it’ll make a difference. So roast your tomatoes and massage your kale!
For the salmon I used a cajun seasoning blend I found at Whole Foods that has no sugar added. I really love it, it’s super fresh and has a nice kick to it. If you don’t have a Whole Foods, Frontier makes one as well or you can blend up your own. You can even skip the blackening altogether, the caesar dressing will add enough flavor if that’s your preference.
I hope you enjoy this super quick and easy salad that is surprisingly filling. Leave a comment and let me know how you made it yours!
Blackened Salmon with Warm Kale Caesar Salad
- 2 salmon fillets
- 6-8 oz of fresh chopped kale
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- ½ cup sliced almonds
- 1 tsp Garlic Salt
- 1 tsp Pepper
- Olive Oil
- 2 tsp Cajun Seasoning
- Caesar Dressing
- Preheat your oven to 375
- Pat dry the salmon, drizzle with olive oil on both sides, sprinkle the side without the skin with the cajun seasoning and set aside
- Toss the tomatoes with olive oil, garlic salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet and into the oven for about 15-20 minutes
- When your tomatoes are about 5 minutes into cooking start your salmon, heat a skillet over med/high heat
- Once hot place the salmon skin side down and cook for 5 minutes
- While your fish is cooking place your kale in a large bowl and massage it for that whole 5 minutes, removing any stems
- Flip the fish, it should easily release from the pan so if it doesn’t give it another minute or so before flipping, and cook about another 5 minutes depending on the thickness of your fish
- Heat another skillet over medium heat and add your kale tossing it to warm it just a bit, you’re not cooking it down, just warming it
- Return your kale to your bowl, add your tomatoes, sliced almonds and caesar dressing tossing to combine
- Transfer your salad between two bowls and top with your salmon (I always remove the skin, but that’s up to you!)