I took liberties with the traditional niçoise salad. This new version has salmon instead of tuna, avocado instead of potatoes, and a ton of kale. The resulting salad is absolutely delicious, satisfying, and paleo and keto-friendly. Although there are disagreements about what can claim to be a niçoise salad, this one is a big stretch, but it has a similar flavor profile with the boiled eggs, capers, kalamata olives, balsamic vinegar, and avocado oil, so I’m going with it.
This recipe was developed as a way to utilize leftover broiled salmon, but you could just as easily use broiled halibut, anchovies, sardines, or chunked tuna. The idea is that if you batch cook the eggs and the fish, and pre-prepare the kale, you can make this salad several times throughout the week in less than 10 minutes. It works great in a mason jar as a quick take to work option. Although a traditional niçoise salad would have onion, Joshua hates them, so I left them out — but if you love them like I do, toss some thinly sliced onions into this salad, it’ll be great.
The list of healthy attributes of this salad is long. The kale is an excellent source of essential vitamins and minerals including magnesium, potassium, vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin B-6, but the real value of kale and other cruciferous vegetables is in their potent antioxidant content. Kale has 45 different flavonoid compounds that have been linked to fighting inflammation, cancer, and heart disease. The salmon, avocado, olives, olive oil, and eggs, provide copious amounts of heart and brain health–promoting and anti-inflammatory omega-3, monounsaturated, and saturated fats. High quality protein comes from the salmon and eggs. The eggs also provide choline which is essential for methylation (DNA synthesis, detoxification, brain signaling) and cellular structure. Finally, the capers provide a pop of salty goodness but also an oversized shot of antioxidants.
- Vegetarian: omit the salmon and increase the number of eggs.
- Vegan: include cannellini beans and omit both the salmon and egg.
- Kale haters: try romaine instead.
- 1 large bunch lacinato kale
- 4oz salmon broiled and cooled (leftover cooked salmon works great)
- 2 hardboiled eggs, sliced
- ½ avocado, sliced
- ¼ cup pitted and halved kalamata olives
- 1 Tablespoon capers, drained
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar,
- salt and pepper to taste
- Optional: a pinch of garlic and/or onion powder
- If needed, broil salmon (link to recipes in the text of this recipe) and cook and cool the hardboiled eggs. If done at the same time, cooking these two items will take about 30 minutes.
- Wash, rinse, de-stem, and chop the kale. Put kale into large bowl and massage for 3 minutes until the leaves are more pliable.
- Chunk the cooled salmon into small, bite-sized pieces, and add to the bowl with the kale.
- Remove the shell of the eggs and slice into thin pieces. Add egg to the bowl.
- Slice the avocado into bite-sized pieces. Add avocado to the bowl.
- Drain the kalamata olives and dice half into small pieces, leaving half of the olives in halves.
- Add the olives and capers to the bowl.
- Mix the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, and optional garlic and onion powder to a small jar with a lid and shake vigorously to combine and dissolve the salt. Once the dressing is mixed, drizzle half over the salad in the bowl and toss to incorporate. Drizzle the remaining half of the dressing over the salad and toss once more.
- Divide salad onto plates and enjoy!