Getting some of the super foods into kids can be quite the challenge. Today, I’m sharing a tasty recipe for a cruciferous and avocado salad that even the little ones gobble right up.
I discovered the “Cruciferous Crunch” blend from Trader Joe’s and I. Am. Hooked! This is definitely convenience food because everything is chopped up or shaved for you, but it’s still raw so you can do so many things with it. The “Cruciferous Crunch” blend is just a mix of kale, shaved Brussels sprouts, broccoli, green cabbage, and red (purple) cabbage, so if you aren’t near a Trader Joe’s grocery, it’s easy to make on your own.
Update: we’ve also found a wonderful blend at Costco that includes a lemon poppy seed dressing and some additional tasty bits like dried cranberries. It has a lot more ‘going on’ in the blend, but I’ve made this same salad with it and it’s still a wonderful mix of flavors.
Today, I’m serving up a raw salad that is now a favorite around here – I think it’s the avocados that make it divine, but I am extremely partial to their buttery texture. It takes less than 10 minutes to put together and after a little time in the fridge so the flavors can marry, this is ready to be a lunch salad or a nutritious side at dinner.
Why Should We Eat Cruciferous Vegetables?
Because I’m responsible for more than just my own nutrition, I’ve done quite a bit of research to find out the most nutrient-dense foods I can find to feed my family. Just look at some of the benefits these veggies have:
- Cruciferous veggies are important because they are dense in conventional nutrients like Vitamin A, Bs, C, E, K, Folic acid, manganese, zinc and many more. Even iron!
- They are linked to being excellent cancer fighters, rich in antioxidants, anit-inflamatories, and phytonutrients.
- The cruciferous vegetable group also boasts a high fiber content, something most of us don’t get enough of everyday.
- Protein – yes, protein – is delivered by this amazing group of vegetables and even healthy fats (Omega 3s)!
Okay, so now you’re convinced that these are super foods and that this blend should be part of your family’s diet, right? Well, let’s get to making it a bit more appealing to the masses because they can taste quite bitter on their own. As with all my recipes, we use organic ingredients but please use what is available to you. The addition of vegetables, healthy oils, and nutritious grains will benefit any diet, organic or not.
Cruciferous and Avocado Salad
- 1 bag “Cruciferous Crunch” blend from Trader Joe’s, Costco, or a mix of kale, shaved Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and green and red cabbage
- 1 ripe (but firm) avocado
- 1/4 c roasted, no salt sunflower seeds
Chop up the blend further, if desired. I take a pair of kitchen shears to the blend because my 3 year old eats this and some of the larger cabbage pieces and Brussels sprouts can be a point of contention with her. If they are small and bite-sized, she eats them, so I take the time to chop ’em up.
Dice the avocado and add it and the sunflowers to the blend. Add the lemon garlic dressing (recipe below) and set in the refrigerator for about an hour so the flavors can blend. This cruciferous and avocado salad tastes better the day after it’s made, but we often enjoy it for a couple days including the day we make it. It’s actually quite tasty if you use a very ripe avocado and mix the salad so the avocado gets all mushy – it makes it more of a creamy texture if your family likes that better.
Lemon Garlic Dressing
- 1/4 c olive oil
- 1 garlic clove, pressed (or minced)
- 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice (roughly 1/2 a lemon)
- salt and pepper to taste
Juice 1/2 a lemon and remove the seeds and/or pulp. Add all contents to a small jar or bowl and shake or stir until combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste and enjoy over our cruciferous and avocado salad.
This is now a staple in our house and I hope you enjoy it as much as we do. The health benefits of kale, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and avocados make this cruciferous and avocado salad make this a winner! We’d love for you to Pin this
I’m always looking to add more of these healthy recipes to my rotation. What are your favorite cruciferous vegetable recipes?