Super Summer Detox Salad

Monday just gave me a knowing wink, then passed me a giant serving of this summer detox salad.

Super Summer Detox Salad

I’m not sure who cued Mr. Monday into my Friday night bar bill, showed him the recycling bin after Saturday’s excursion on the lake (I promise I shared that six-pack and guac!), or mentioned Sunday night’s barbecue bonanza (kudos to my sister-in-law, who cooked five pounds of fall-apart tender spare ribs), but he has a way of cajoling me into atoning for my weekend excesses. It’s as if the “M” on my calendar stands for “Make Amends.” On Mondays, I restore the equilibrium of my digestive system, and thanks to wonderful, nutrient-rich meals like this Super Summer Detox Salad, I feel happy and satisfied while completing the task.

Super Food Detox Salad with Cherries and Kale

Summer Detox Salad with Cherries and Kale

I created this salad the week after we returned from New York City, which if you’ve so much as skimmed that post, you might have an idea why I felt compelled to up my intake of greens. In the Big Apple, we ate with the guilt-free gusto of vacation, regretting only our lack of stomach space. Though I certainly wouldn’t trade the midnight pork buns, daily croissants, melt-in-your-mouth pastas, and fried chicken we enjoyed for a salad bar, I arrived home in a body crying out for a reset (and vegetables).

I’ve long been suspicious of stereotypical juice-based detoxes (plus, I completely lack the will power to subsist on liquids alone), so instead, I created a filling meal based around antioxidant-rich foods. The result is a hearty salad loaded with texture, good-for-you-ingredients, and bursting with fresh summer flavor.

Ultimate Detox Salad

Let’s review our detox dream team: crunchy kale; bright cherries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and grapes would be excellent too); walnuts; whole grains (I used farro—quinoa or brown rice are good swaps, if you prefer); artichokes; lemon; and chickpeas, plus red onions for a little zip.

I can already feel the power.

Super Summer Detox Salad. Something this good for you shouldn't taste this delicious! Made with cherries, kale, chickpeas, and other antioxidant rich foods

Packed with fiber and protein, this summer detox salad is satisfying enough to serve as a main meal and will keep in the refrigerator for four days, making it a perfect make-ahead dish. I actually thought it tasted even better leftover, after the kale had mellowed and softened a bit.

In the event you need one more reason to toss together this detox salad, let it be the season. Once again, I’m joining the #EatSeasonal blogger team to share a round up of recipes highlighting produce that is at its peak of freshness and flavor. The June list is dreamy.

What's in Season for June

Honestly, I think I could make some version of this detox salad with just about every ingredient on this list, and I hope you feel inspired to do the same.

Summer Detox Salad. Packed with the Top 10 antioxidant rich foods. Serve for lunch, at a potluck, or top with chicken for dinner

Monday, give me all the knowing looks you like—I’ve got a forkful of summer detox salad, and I’ll dominate any stare down.

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Super Summer Detox Salad

A healthy and filling detox salad loaded with antioxidant rich ingredients like kale, cherries, walnuts, and artichokes in a light lemon dressing.


Yield: Serves 4-6

Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:


  • 1/2 cup uncooked farro or quinoa

  • 1/4 cup olive oil

  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 1 large or 2 small lemons)

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus additional for cooking the farro

  • 1 large bunch (about 10 to 12 ounces) kale leaves, destemmed and chopped

  • 1 cup pitted cherries, halved

  • 1, 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion

  • 1, 14-ounce can artichoke hearts, rinsed and sliced into quarters if large

  • 1/2 cup toasted walnut halves, roughly chopped


Directions:


  1. Place the farro in a medium saucepan with 1 1/2 cups water and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, then simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the water is absorbed and the farro is tender, about 25 minutes. Transfer to a large serving bowl. While the farro cooks, prepare the other ingredients.

  2. In a small bowl or measuring cup, briskly whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, and 1/2 teaspoon salt until well combined. Pour over the warm farro, then toss to coat. Add the kale, cherries, chickpeas, red onions, and artichokes and toss to combine. Sprinkle the walnuts over the top. If time allows, place in the refrigerator for 20 minutes to allow the kale to tenderize. Enjoy.


Leftover Summer Detox Salad will keep in the refrigerator for up to four days.


All images and text ©/Well Plated.

For more June inspiration, don’t miss the rest of our #EatSeasonal recipes, and tag your own social media seasonal recipe photos with hashtag #EatSeasonal too!