This amazing kale salad is a copycat version of the Taylor Farms salad kit sold at Costco with an avocado-oil based dressing. And you can customize it how you want!
Grab a large bowl, friend. It’s time make a killer kale salad!
I’m a big fan of the Costco salad kits . You know what I’m talking about — the ones made by Taylor Farm (Plus Costco has some good ones in the deli section, too)
The Sweet Kale Salad is one of my favorites though!
One of my favorite things about this salad is the use of hearty greens and shredded vegetables.
You can dress the salad, stick it in the fridge in an airtight container and eat it the next day (or even the next 4 days!) and it won’t go limp and slimy like dressed Romaine or another lightweight lettuce.
What’s in Sweet Kale Salad from Costco?
First, kale, obviously. You can use lacinato kale (sometimes called dinosaur kale or Tuscan kale — the kale leaves are darker green with bumpy leaves) or curly kale. Both work really well.
Broccoli slaw, shredded Brussels sprouts, and shredded cabbage make up the rest of the bulk.
Broccoli slaw is one of my favorite pre-prepped ingredients (I use it in my Paleo Pad Thai, too!) It’s an easy way to hide more veg into salads and slaws. It’s basically broccoli stems, which is hilarious to me because that’s the part we typically throw away when we prep broccoli. (Another great business model there…)
Shredded cabbage is easy to find and you can also buy pre-shredded Brussels sprouts in most grocery stores now! (Hallelujah!). If you’re old school, you can totally shred the Brussels and cabbage with a food processor. Also, if you have a food processor with a shredding/slicing blade you can whip this up so fast. (I have this one.)
The salad kit also has dried sweet cranberries and pumpkin seeds (pepitas) which are easy to find, too.
If you wanted to change up the ingredients, here are some that would go great in this salad:
- really thin slices of red onion
- sliced bell pepper
- sunflower seeds
- pine nuts
- parmesan cheese
- sharp cheddar cheese
- feta cheese
- shredded rotisserie chicken
- bacon crumbles
That Costco kale salad is great when you need a side dish or a potluck offering in a pinch. And everyone loves them. BUT.
I’m a stinker when it comes to oils.
The poppyseed dressing in the Costco cranberry kale salad kits is soybean oil-based (along with all the other salad dressings in the other kits). Vegetable oil and canola oils are no better. All of these oils are highly inflammatory and while a salad kit here or there is fine, I try not to buy them on a regular basis.
If I was going to start a new business I’d make salad kits with healthy dressings — ones with extra-virgin olive oil or avocado oil as the base.
(If you’d like to steal that idea and run with it, let me know how it goes. I’d just like free salad for life, please.)
Kale Salad Dressing Recipe
I tried to mimic the dressing in the salad kit as best I could with this homemade dressing. This poppy seed dressing has a little citrus (orange juice and fresh lemon juice) and honey for sweetness. You could use pure maple syrup if you like.
I used avocado oil for a neutral flavor. Extra-virgin olive oil tends to be kind of strong in dressings sometimes.
Apple cider vinegar boosts the fruity flavors from the citrus and adds a nice, tart flavor!
Typically vinaigrette recipes have a little dijon mustard. This one doesn’t, but it would help create a more creamy dressing if that’s what you’re going for.
Don’t forget the poppy seeds! Shake it all up in a mason jar, and pour it over your greens.
And there you have it — one of the best kale salad recipes out there with lots of ways you can customize it!
More of Our Favorite Potluck Salads
We’re still in BBQ/Potluck season so here are a few of my favorite potluck salads! Some of them are paleo, some are dairy-free, but all of them are gluten-free.
Grilled Vegetable and Rotisserie Chicken Salad
Roasted Potato Salad with Dill-Scallion Vinaigrette
Avocado Bacon and Parmesan Salad with Tangy Avocado Dressing
For more of our favorite recipes with Brussels sprouts, click here: Best Brussels Sprouts Recipes.
If you make one of my recipes, be sure to post it on social media and tag me at @perrysplate or #perrysplate so I can send you some love!
Sweet Kale Salad (Costco Copycat)
This is a from-scratch version of the beloved Sweet Kale Salad sold at Costco -- with a much cleaner dressing!
For the salad:
- 4 ounces of kale, leaves removed from stems and thinly sliced (about 1/2 bunch)
- 1/4 of a small head of cabbage, cored and shredded
- 8 ounces of Brussels sprouts, trimmed and shredded
- 8 ounces of broccoli slaw
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup raw or toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
For the dressing:
- 1/4 cup neutral-tasting oil, like avocado or light olive
- 3 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons honey
- 1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon poppy seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- Combine the kale, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and broccoli slaw in a large salad bowl.
- Add all of the dressing ingredients into a pint-sized mason jar or other lidded container. Shake the dressing vigorously to combine well. Pour 3/4 of the dressing over the salad greens. Toss the greens around to coat it well in the dressing, and then add the remaining dressing if you feel that it needs more.
- Sprinkle the cranberries and pepitas over the salad. Lightly toss to combine.
1. I realize these are awkward measurements, but if you buy one bunch of kale, a small head of cabbage, 1 pound of Brussels sprouts, and a 1-pound bag of broccoli slaw, you have enough for two salads. (And some cabbage leftover for some tacos!) Just divide the greens in half, double the dressing, and store half of each in separate containers in the fridge until you're ready to make your second salad.
2. This salad lasts 3-4 days, dressed and stored in the fridge.
P.S. Here’s another salad that uses pre-shredded vegetables — this time with a maple-mustard dressing that’s to die for! It’s a salad I created for The Pioneer Woman’s site. You can find the recipe here: Ultimate Winter Salad.
Friday 29th of October 2021
I love the flavour of caprese so this stuffed chicken recipe is just perfect for me. Definitely perfect for a delicious weeknight dinner.. thanks for sharing the great recipe!
Monday 4th of October 2021
Delicious! I liked the dressing just as it was. For the guys I, i has to add more honey. Win, win here. Thank you so much. They never give enough dressing in the salad mix. Now I can just make the dressing and salad myself.
Wednesday 13th of October 2021
So glad you liked it!
Tuesday 27th of July 2021
Are you saying that the dressings in the Cos o salads are bad for you.
Saturday 31st of July 2021
The salad dressings in the vast majority of salad kits (not just the ones sold at Costco) are made with soybean/vegetable/canola oils which are highly inflammatory and can cause issues in the body. A lot of them also have quite a bit of sweeteners. For those reasons I like the option of making the dressing myself so I can control which oils and sweeteners are in the dressings.
That being said -- I'm not above buying salad kits from Costco or anywhere else if I'm in a busy phase of life and don't have the time or headspace to make salads completely from scratch. (Like now haha.) Salad kits are still a step up from a frozen pizza and if my kids will eat them, then the benefit of extra vegetables outweighs the problematic ingredients in the dressings. My goal is to reduce the amount of inflammatory oils my family eats in general so there's give and take. I hope that answers your question!
Tuesday 23rd of June 2020
In what aisle do I find the poppyseeds?
Wednesday 1st of July 2020
Hi! You can find them with the spices in the grocery store.
Wednesday 20th of May 2020
Thank you Perry, love love love this dressing. I could now make my own thanks to you. I thought there's a little mayo in it to make it look milky. Guess not.