This broccoli kale salad blends the sweet flavors of cranberries, tartness of lemon and savory flavors of vegetables, topped with fresh wild Alaska sockeye salmon and a honey lemon dressing.
This post is sponsored by ASMI. All opinions are my own.
A good kale and broccoli salmon salad is one of my favorite things. We often buy kale salad kits from the grocery store, but as you may guess, making your own is so much more flavorful.
This broccoli kale salad is a sweet kale salad recipe balanced by tart flavors of lemon and savory flavors of salmon. It’s great for ordinary lunches, fancy dinner parties, or even as a side for holiday gatherings.
Plus, adding the Alaska salmon is a wonderful way to meet your seafood recommendations (two servings/week, or about 8-ounces/week). I bet you don’t have many sockeye salmon recipes you can depend on, but this one is a must make!
If you don’t have wild sockeye salmon, you can use any type of Alaska salmon.
What is the Nutrition Content of Wild Alaska Salmon?
I’m especially conscious of incorporating regular seafood into my meals since I’m pregnant and wild Alaska sockeye salmon is one of my favorite.
There are several health benefits to eating seafood, but the omega’s and Vitamin D content are especially important for pregnancy and the growing fetus.
The two omega 3’s that are found in fish are EPA and DHA. EPA helps with the heart, developing immune system and inflammatory response, while DHA supports the baby’s growing brain, eyes and central nervous system.
Omega 3’s can also help with lowering blood pressure, and it’s common for blood pressure to rise during pregnancy.
Plus, salmon is also a great source of protein (pregnant women have higher protein needs) and B-vitamins, and is also low in mercury, making it a great choice for pregnancy.
How To Cook Alaska Sockeye Salmon for This Broccoli Kale Salad
Don’t be intimidated by cooking sockeye – it’s so easy to make it on the stove.
Firstly, season your sockeye salmon fillets with salt and pepper. If possible, thaw them and bring them to room temperature before cooking.
Add olive oil or avocado oil to a pan over medium-high to high heat and then add salmon fillets. To keep the Alaska salmon juicy and prevent the fillets from getting dry, it’s important that the skillet is hot.
This method helps keep the interior juicy, while the exterior stays crispy.
Cook for about 3 minutes, starting with the skin side down. Then, flip the fillets and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes.
Then, you’ll remove the salmon from the pan or skillet, and add your garlic and lemon juice to the pan and stir. Add the sockeye salmon fillets back in and mix them with the garlic lemon juice for the lemon garlic baked salmon flavor.
Next, saute your broccoli and asparagus in oil and season with salt and pepper. Prepare your massaged kale while the vegetables are sauteing.
How To Massage Kale Leaves
Massaging a bulk of kale leaves sounds intimidating but it takes less than a minute and it’s really quite simple.
First, take your bunch of kale and break off any hard stems that you see. Keep the leaves intact. Wash the kale and dry the leaves. Using a salad spinner helps with this!
Once your kale leaves are dry and the stems removed, place the kale in a bowl. Add olive oil, the juice from one lemon and sea salt.
Massage the leaves so the olive oil, lemon juice and sea salt is equally spread out among the kale leaves. Continue massaging until the kale leaves start to soften.
Once you’re done massaging your kale leaves, you’ll add the sauteed broccoli and asparagus, peeled carrots and sockeye salmon fillets.
Lastly, mix your honey lemon dressing. Simply mix apple cider vinegar, olive oil, the juice from two lemons, honey and salt in a mason jar and shake well. Modify amounts of each as desired, for taste.
Garnish with dried cranberries and tomatoes (both optional) and you’re done!
Wild Alaska Salmon and Immunity Benefits
Did you know approximately 90-95% of wild salmon harvested in the U.S. comes from Alaska? There are five species of Alaska salmon.
Sockeye salmon is one of the most popular species and works well for grilling, broiling, sauteing, roasting, poaching and steaming.
As mentioned above, I’m conscious of including great omega 3-fatty acid sources into my diet (especially during pregnancy). Wild Alaska salmon is also a great source of zinc, selenium and Vitamin D, all of which are critical for maintaining and improving immune function.
Vitamin D is difficult to get through food, and 3 ounces of sockeye salmon has nearly 95% of the daily recommended value!
Vitamin A and glutamine are also found in Alaska seafood and help with immunity.
Can You Bake Alaska Salmon For This Kale and Broccoli Salad?
Totally. I prefer the stove top method because it’s quick, but you can certainly throw the salmon fillets in the oven if you prefer the taste and texture of baked Alaska salmon recipes.
The best part about this kale and broccoli salad is that it’s ready in under 30 minutes from start to finish.
I recommend using the honey lemon dressing as needed, in case you want to save some for later.
If you want to serve this kale broccoli cranberry salad at a dinner party, I recommend doubling or tripling the recipe. It’s an easy crowd-pleaser, but also so nutritious and colorful!
- 2 Alaska salmon filets
- salt and pepper
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 1 bunch of kale or kale salad mix
- 1/2 bunch asparagus, chopped
- 2 cups broccoli florets, chopped
- 1 lemon
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup grape tomatoes, halved
Lemon Honey Dressing
- 3 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- Juice from 2 lemons
- 1 Tbsp honey
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Season your salmon with salt and pepper.
- Add olive oil to a pan over medium high to high heat. Once hot, add salmon filets. Cook for about 3 minutes, skin side down. Flip the filets and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes.
- Remove filets from pan when done and put them on a plate. Add garlic clove and lemon juice to pan and stir. Add salmon filets back in and mix, letting them soak up the juice.
- Turn off heat and place salmon filets aside.
- Add broccoli and asparagus to medium pan and sautee with olive oil over medium high heat. While broccoli and asparagus are cooking, prepare the kale salad.
- Remove stems, wash and massage your kale leaves. Dry them, and place in a bowl. Add olive oil, juice from 1 lemon and sea salt. Peel carrots and add to salad.
- Once broccoli and asparagus are done, add them to salad bowl. Add salmon filets in, and garnish with dried cranberries and grape tomatoes.
- Top with additional carrot peels, if desired.
- To make the lemon dressing, whisk ingredients in small bowl or shake them in a jar. Adjust to taste. Serve dressing along with salad.
More Summer Salad Recipes?
What’s your favorite way to prepare salmon?