A hormone-balancing shredded Kale Brussels Sprout Salad made with a variety of cruciferous vegetables, pumpkin seeds, avocado, parsley and a simple lemon dressing. It’s a hearty, crunchy salad that’s great for meal prep!
This flavorful and hearty salad is perfect of helping support hormone balance. But even if you’re just looking for a satisfying make-ahead lunch, you’re going to love this salad. The base of the salad combines a trio of cruciferous veggies — kale, Brussels sprouts, and purple cabbage — that gets massaged with lemon juice to help break down the veggies making them more tender and mild tasting. The pumpkin seeds, avocado and parsley add crunch, flavor, healthy fats and a variety of nutrients. It’s topped with a simply lemon dressing that adds a punch of brightness to the hearty greens.
To make this salad more filling, the recipe calls for pan seared organic tofu. It soaks up the flavor of the lemon dressing and holds up well if you’re planning to store it in the fridge for a few days. Feel free to sub another protein of choice — organic chicken, grass-fed steak, hard boiled eggs, or lentils would all be lovely additions.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Kale – lacinato kale (aka dinosaur kale) or green leafy kale are the best options for this salad. Red leafy kale has a more bitter taste. Simply remove the leaves from the steam and finely chop into bite sized strips. The thinner the shreds the better.
- Brussels sprouts – this salad calls for raw Brussels sprouts. Finely shredding them makes them taste like a more mild version of cabbage with a nutty, slightly sweet taste. You may be able to fine shredded brussels sprouts at the store, but I highly recommend shredding them yourself if possible.
- Purple cabbage – while purple cabbage is rich in a type of antioxidant anthocyanins, green cabbage can be substituted if you’re in a pinch. Feel free to use a cabbage and carrot slaw mix if you’re short on time.
- Pumpkin seeds – look raw, sprouted or dry roasted pumpkin seeds. Alternatively, you can use chopped walnut halves.
- Avocado – adds a welcomed creaminess as well as fiber, B vitamins and folate. The more ripe the avocado the more likely it is to mash into the salad. I don’t mind this but you can always leave it out and add just before serving.
- Parsley – the fresh herb adds detoxification support and a fresh flavor. Feel free to use curly or flat leaf parsley. Fresh chives, basil or even cilantro could be substituted.
- Olive Oil – use a good quality extra-virgin olive oil since it’s the main dressing component. I’ve used avocado oil in this salad before but extra virgin oil oil does have a superior flavor.
- Lemon Juice – used to message the kale and in the lemon dressing. The acid helps break down the raw veggies while also providing a bright, fresh flavor.
HOW TO SHRED BRUSSELS SPROUTS, Kale & Cabbage:
- Food processor: the quickest way to shred the veggies is with a a food processor with a slicing blade. It takes about 5 minutes to shred the Brussels sprouts, kale and cabbage. Plus, all the piece come out shredded the same size.
- Mandoline: another great option is a mandoline slicer. This take a little more time and precision as you have to hold the Brussle sprouts and cabbage by hand. You’ll still have to use a knife for the kale.
- Knife: a very sharp chef’s knife will also work. This method will take the longest but it will still get the job done if you have the patience.
Hormone Supporting Benefits
This salad has major hormone balancing benefits. It’s loaded with cruciferous vegetables to help support estrogen detoxification, liver supporting herbs, healthy fats, protein, fiber and a wide variety of nutrients.
Supporting detoxification and elimination is a large part of supporting hormonal health. Lifestyle factors like alcohol consumption, NSAIDs, oral contraceptives, and other medications are a few of the many factors that can overburden the liver. This salad supports hormone balance, liver detoxification, and also nourishes your gut bacteria.
Cruciferous Veggies: kale, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, etc. provide a considerable amount of vitamin A, vitamin C, folic acid, and fiber. Vitamin-A is required to build progesterone, while fiber is needed to eliminate the excess estrogen.
If you’re concerned about raw cruciferous for your thyroid, massaging with lemon juice will help breakdown the goitrogens. However, you can try steaming the kale, Brussel sprouts and cabbage for 5minutes after shredding them.
Parsley + Lemon: have detoxing effects and provide your body with nutrients.
Avocado: healthy fats are the building blocks to make hormones. Avocados are rich in monounsaturated fats, along with fiber, potassium, magnesium, vitamin E, B vitamins and folic acid which all are essential for maintaining hormonal balance.
Pumpkin seeds: high in zinc which helps support progesterone production as you move towards the progesterone rise in the second phase of your cycle.
More Salad Recipe’s You’ll Love
Shedded Kale and Brussels Sprout Salad
A hormone-balancing shredded Kale Brussels Sprout Salad made with a variety of cruciferous vegetables, pumpkin seeds, avocado, parsley and a simple lemon dressing. It’s a great salad for meal prep!
- Prep Time: 20 min
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: 4-6 servings 1x
For the Salad:
1 bunch lacinato kale, ribs removed
1/2 lb brussels sprouts, stems removed
1/4 large purple cabbage
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1 avocado, sliced in cubes
For the Dressing:
3 tbsp avocado oil
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 lemon, juiced
1 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp dijon mustard
1/2 -1 tbsp honey
1/2 tsp salt, plus more to taste
For the Tofu (optional):
1 lb organic extra firm tofu (see notes)
1/2 – 1 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
Finely slice the kale, Brussels sprouts and cabbage. I highly recommend using a food processor with a shredding blade for this step. Simply add them to the opening of the food processor while the blade is spinning to get fine slices. Alternatively, use a sharp knife to slice kale, Brussels sprouts and cabbage as finely as possible.
Place all of the salad ingredients in a jar or blender, shake or blend until emulsified. Pour the dressing on the salad. Message with clean hands until the kale has softened. Don’t skip this step!
Add the parsley, pumpkin seeds, and chopped avocado. Top with tofu or another protein of choice and toss. Store in the fridge 3-4 days.
For Pan Seared Tofu: wrap tofu in paper towels and gently press to release the liquid. Slice extra firm tofu into 1 inch cubes. Heat a ceramic/non-stick pan to medium-high heat. Add a light layer of avocado or olive oil. Once the pan is fully heated, add the tofu to the pan. Lightly salt and pepper. Let cook for 5-6 minutes per side. Flip and continue to crisp four of the six sides of tofu.
Organic tofu: this is an optional plant-based protein. Feel free to sub anther cooked protein of choice like chicken or salmon. For a plant-based option, I recommend lentils or chickpeas.
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?
I’d love to hear how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #nourishedbynutriton.
Looking for this recipe and now I find it! Can’t wait to make this Sat