Dishing Up the Dirt

Thai Kale Salad with Sesame Polenta Croutons

We grow a LOT of kale at Tumbleweed Farm. Our CSA members can expect a bunch of kale weekly in their vegetable boxes and we always arrive at the famers markets armed with a ton of this lovely brassica.

We have no problem eating kale every single day. However, I think some people might get a little tired of preparing it the same old way. My goal is to come up with as many creative kale recipes so our customers are as pumped as we are to eat this superfood on a regular basis.

This Thai kale salad with sesame polenta croutons is a great way to use up a bunch of kale if you are strapped for time or running out of kale recipes. The creamy peanut dressing is so stinking good that you will probably have to stop yourself from drinking it with a straw. Trust me, you shouldn’t be left alone with the peanut dressing. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

This salad tastes great on its own- however, I recommend eating it outside on the porch in the company of good friends and a couple of crazy dogs playing in the yard. Enjoy!

Thai Kale Salad with Sesame Polenta Croutons

Prep Time: 15 minutes    Cook Time: 10 minutes    Serves: 4

For the Salad:
  • 1 large bunch of kale, tough stems removed and chopped into bit-sized pieces
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced carrots
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, diced
  • 3-4 radishes, thinly sliced
  • 1 small avocado, cut into small chunks
  • 1/2 cup raisins,
  • 2-3 Tablespoon sesame seeds
For the Peanut Dressing:
  • 1/4 cup organic smooth peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 Tablespoon low sodium tamari
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
  • 1 Tablespoon pure maple syrup (or honey)
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes + more if you like the heat
For the Polenta Croutons:
  • 1 Tablespoon sesame oil
  • 9 ounces of pre-cooked polenta (about half of the standard cylinder size you can buy at most grocery stores) cut into 1/2 inch cubes


  1. Prepare the dressing by combining all the ingredients and whisking until smooth. This works best with an immersion blender or food processor. Taste test and adjust seasonings if necessary. Set aside.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of sesame oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Stir in polenta cubes and cook until browned on all sides. About 2 minutes per side. Remove from heat and set aside.
  3. In a large salad bowl add the kale. Drizzle with half the dressing. Roll up your sleeves and lightly massage the dressing into the kale.  Wash your hands and then toss in the rest of the ingredients. Add the polenta croutons and more dressing.
  4. Serve and enjoy!


*you may end up with more dressing than you need for this salad. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. *Use this recipe as a guide. Adjust measurements and ingredients as necessary. *Taste test as you go!

Leave a Reply

12 thoughts on “Thai Kale Salad with Sesame Polenta Croutons

  1. I’ve made that peanut dressing and you’re right, it’s dangerous stuff! I love it.

    I also love the polenta croutons. Brilliant! I wish I would have seen this earlier today, it would definitely be included in my round up. Have a good weekend, lady!

  2. I am jealous of all the kale you grow, since we don’t get so much here in Switzerland. I may have to start growing my own in a pot, if that’s feasible. But this peanut dressing does look really good. This is the perfect filling but light warm-weather meal.

  3. Morgan says:

    This recipe sounds PERFECT! I’ve been getting a lot of kale in my weekly CSA recently and I’ve loved getting to use it so many different ways! Thank you for posting so many yummy recipes with CSA veggies in mind. They’re always amazing!

  4. Those polenta croutons are killing me! Not to mention the peanut sauce. I have proven on multiple occasions that I’m not to be trusted alone with that stuff! I bet this tastes best with kale grown with as much love as yours is. Have a lovely weekend my dear!

  5. This dressing sounds delicious! I can’t wait to try it. 🙂

  6. That is some gorgeous kale! I’ve never heard of Thai kale before, though Thai basil yes 🙂 Polenta croutons are so cool too! Much better than regular ol’ croutons!

  7. Allison says:

    Great idea using the polenta as GF croutons! Mmm and I am so obsessed with peanuts right now. I have kale coming out of my eyeballs and always looking for new ways to jazz it up. Yum! I always love thai salads out, so I’ve got to give this a try 🙂

  8. Laurie says:

    I eat kale every. single. day! My favorite way to eat it is to chop up 1 bunch of kale and massage it with 2 T. of
    lemon juice. 1 T. of honey and 2 chopped dates till it is nice and soft. Then I toss it with some chopped apple and walnuts. It is so YUMMY! 🙂

  9. Emma says:

    I definitely don’t have a problem eating my kale but I’m sure this recipe would convince kale-skeptics! Sounds utterly amazing. At first I thought that was pineapple on top but polenta croutons is even better.

  10. francesca says:

    big big yum. Wish our kale was as pretty!

  11. Murphy says:

    This salad was delicious. I’ve been making the peanut sauce regularly but just made the salad tonight and it was a hit. I added some green onions, too!

    1. Andrea says:

      I’m so happy you loved this as much as we do! Thanks for the comment!

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