Oh hello, here’s a salad we can SINK OUR TEETH INTO. Finally.
I’m all about a main dish salad. I order them often in restaurants because I want to, not because I’m punishing myself for something or feel like I should. BUT, the salad’s gotta be a good one. House made dressings, fun protein choices, crunchy things, etc. If salads on a menu don’t look good, I’m heading straight for ordering a dinner entree during brunch because the smothered chicken is just always so legit, right?
I got off track.
Salad! This one in particular. It’s got the base of my favorite kale salad that we make at least once per week. Meal prep this one! I wash and tear the kale on Sundays then use it for at least one lunch and one dinner, then throw any leftovers into pasta or curry at the end of the week.
Start by adding just a bit of olive oil to the kale, then squish fistfuls of the kale to break it up slightly and spread the oil over all the leaves. This will soften the kale leaves just slightly and make them wonderfully chewy without being hard to eat.
Next, we start to build Caprese Cobb Salad!
The toppings on this caprese cobb salad are very summery and delicious, of course. Grilled chicken and corn, to start.
I drizzle both with olive oil and add lots of salt and pepper, then grill them and let them cool while I make the rest of the salad.
Dressing is the most simple pesto vinaigrette: any pesto you have on hand mixed with some lemon juice to thin it out, and maybe a pinch of salt if you need it.
When the dressing is done and the corn and chicken are grilled, all that’s left is assembling the salad. Use a serrated knife (even a steak knife works for this) to cut the corn off the cob. Slice the chicken, dice the tomatoes and mozzarella.
Make a salad! I arrange the ingredients on top of the salad in pretty rows (cobs on a Cobb, get it?), then drizzle just a bit of the dressing over the top.
For serving, pass extra dressing for anyone that needs it!
And there we go. It’s delicious, nutritious, Whole food-y without being overly light or boring. The chicken and cheese have enough protein that you aren’t going to be scrounging for a snack ten minutes later, always a pitfall of super light recipes for me.
Pesto to me just screams summer, and the corn with tomatoes drive the point home in a borderline-not-quite-obnoxious way, the best line to straddle when it comes to summer produce.
Enjoy this one! It’s EXCELLENT.Print
Chewy kale, smoky grilled chicken and corn, bright, fresh tomatoes and pesto dressing. This zippy summer salad has it all and is filling but great for you.
- 1 bunch Lacinato (flat) kale
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 lemon, zested
- Kosher salt and pepper
- 4 tablespoons prepared basil pesto
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 2 ears corn, husks removed
- ½ cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 4 ounces fresh mozzarella, cubed
- Remove the stems from the kale leaves with your fingers or a small knife. Tear the kale into bite-sized pieces and place in a large salad bowl.
- Drizzle the kale with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and squish it into the kale using your hands, like you are trying to squeeze water out of the kale. When the kale is coated in the oil, let it sit while you prepare the rest of the salad. This will soften the leaves slightly.
- Make the dressing by combining the pesto, the juice of half the lemon, and ¼ teaspoon salt with a fork.
- Preheat a grill for high heat grilling. Toss the chicken thighs with the lemon zest, ½ teaspoon EACH salt and pepper, and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Drizzle the corn with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Grill the corn until dark marks form, then remove from the grill and allow to cool. Grill the chicken until cooked through, about 7 minutes on each side.
- When done grilling, slice the chicken and use a serrated knife to scrape the corn kernels from the cobs. Toss the kale with the juice from the other half of the lemon and ½ teaspoon of salt.
- Assemble the salad. Make a bed with the seasoned kale and arrange segments of the corn, chicken, tomatoes, and mozzarella. Drizzle with the pesto dressing. Enjoy!
The kale base of this salad is one that I use all the time, for main dish salads like this one or side salads topped with any other veggies I have. It’s delicious!
Keywords: kale, salads, gluten free, summer, low carb
(yes I absolutely serve bread with my low carb meals)