Kale Detox Salad with Pesto

Another healthy, green recipe for January! Although, I feel like once it hits the second week, we all stop talking about our resolutions and whatnot.

Detoxing was in vogue a few year ago, but now it’s kind of lost its steam as body positivity has come more into the light. Which I want to address – you can be body positive AND want to eat healthier. One does not preclude the other. And I am all for body positivity AND eating healthy. But it’s important to mention that TRUE detoxing happens in the body already – your body actually has a very efficient system for removing toxins. A juice cleanse is not a real detox. However, we CAN make it easier for our bodies by eating the nutrients it needs for these detoxifying processes to happen – i.e. foods that aid in digestion and elimination, foods that promote liver health, etc. But let me stress again that the foods are NOT the detox themselves – they’re just helping the body do what it already does.

Enter this kale detox salad. The overarching principle behind this salad being a “detox” salad is that it’s super green, which means chlorophyll. I love talking about chlorophyll as a detoxifying agent because it’s one of the best things you can have for your liver. Without getting too science-y, chlorophyll helps increase the activity of Phase II Biotransformation Enzymes, which have been shown to help remove toxins and carcinogens from the body. So basically, eat green and help your liver.

Ingredients

Carrot Top Pesto

  • Tops of 1 Bunch Carrots
  • 1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/4 Tsp Salt
  • 1/4 Tsp Pepper
  • Juice from 1/2 a Lemon

Roasted Veg

  • 1 Lb Fingerling Potatoes cut into rounds
  • 3-4 Large Purple Carrots cut into rounds
  • 1 15 oz Can Chickpeas drained and rinsed
  • A Generous Drizzle of Olive Oil
  • 1 Tsp Salt
  • 1 Tsp Pepper
  • 1 Tsp Dried Parsley
  • 1 Tsp Dried Basil
  • 1/2 Tsp Garlic Powder
  • Few Sprinkles of Dried Thyme

The Rest of the Salad

  • A Few Handfuls Lacinato Kale Sliced Thin
  • 1 Cup Cooked Brown Rice
  • Sliced Jalapeño if desired
  • Sesame Seeds if desired

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Prep vegetables – wash and dry carrots and potatoes. Cut both into rounds (disks), about 1/4 inch thick.
  3. In a bowl, combine chopped potatoes, carrots, and chickpeas. Add in olive oil and spices, and mix well until everything is evenly coated.
  4. On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, bake vegetables + chickpeas for 45-50 minutes. When they’re done cooking, remove from oven and let cool.
  5. While vegetables are cooking, make pesto – combine all ingredients into a food processor and process on high until a slightly smooth pesto is formed.
  6. In a bowl, mix thinly sliced lacinato kale and pesto until kale is evenly covered. Then, add in roasted vegetables + chickpeas and brown rice. Mix well until everything is evenly combined.
  7. Serve in bowls and top with sesame seeds.
  8. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

If you can’t find lacinato (Tuscan) kale, any other hardy green will do – like chard, regular kale, or collard greens.

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