This Spicy Chipotle Salmon Kale Salad is made with chopped kale and topped with pan-seared salmon and a spicy yogurt-based chipotle dressing.
While everyone else is trying to eat more salad this January, I’m just over here eating more halloumi. I’m not even sure halloumi technically “goes” with this kind of salad recipe, but I made it happen (side note: I personally feel like it belongs in any kind of salad so…..there’s that). If you’re like wtf is halloumi, halloumi is a fry-able cheese and it is pure magic. It doesn’t melt when you fry it, but rather, it turns golden brown and crisps up juuuust a teeny tiny bit and it is the best.
So yeah, say hello to my new favorite salad recipe! I’ve already made it four times. I love it, Miguel loves it—it’s a win. Oh and PS if you’re looking for a veganized version of this salad, there will be a similar recipe up on the Forager Instagram page soon!
So I know I just went on about the halloumi, but the halloumi is kind of just a bonus to this recipe. The real stars are HANDS DOWN the spicy chipotle salmon and the yogurt dressing. The salmon is marinated in lime juice, chili lime seasoning and chipotle seasoning and then pan seared in a cast iron skillet !!! Seared to perfection.
Tip: If you’re anything like me and you tend to burn the outside of your fish while leaving the middle undercooked (<—is that so gross to even admit? I’m sorry), you can also bake your fish in the oven for 6-8 minutes after pan-searing it, which is what I did and is probably how I’m going to make my salmon from now on! It just assures your salmon is cooked all the way through but leaves the outside crispy.
The dressing is yogurt-based—I used Greek yogurt and added a chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, and then some of the actual adobo sauce for added spiciness! You’re going to LOVE it.
- 4 cups kale
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Pinch of salt
- 1 sweet potato, peeled and chopped
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- ¼ cup red onion, diced or sliced
- 2 tbsp sunflower seeds
- ½ package of halloumi cheese
- 2 salmon filets
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1 tbsp chili lime seasoning (or sub chili powder)
- ½ tsp chipotle powder
- For the dressing:
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- 1 chipotle chile, with 2 tbsp sauce from can of chipotles in adobo sauce
- Juice from 1½ limes*
- Pinch of salt and black pepper
- Preheat oven to 375°.**
- Add kale, 1 tbsp olive oil and salt to a large bowl and use your hands to massage kale for about 20 seconds; set aside.
- Next, heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat (I used my cast iron) and add sweet potatoes, stirring occasionally until sweet potatoes are crispy on the outside and cooked on the inside.
- Meanwhile, add the chopped onion and sunflower seeds to the bowl with kale.
- Next, chop the halloumi and then heat in over a skillet. cooking for about a minute on each side, or until golden brown; add the halloumi to the bowl with the kale.
- Next, cook the salmon. Make sure your cast iron skillet is free, so if you were using it to cook the sweet potatoes, add the sweet potatoes to the kale salad and wipe it down. Then, add lime juice to both sides of the salmon, then dip the salmon into the marinade (chili and chipotle seasoning) and then directly into the cast iron skillet. Make sure the skillet is over medium high heat and place a lid over the skillet and cook salmon for 3-4 minutes on each side, adding a bit of oil to the skillet to make sure it doesn't stick.
- Check your salmon to make sure it's cooked through; if it is, great! If you happen to have an extra thick piece of salmon, it might not be. If that's the case, place your cast iron skillet into the oven and bake the salmon for an additional 8-12 minutes.
- For the dressing: add all ingredients to a blender and pulse until smooth.
- Assemble everything together and enjoy!
**You do not have to do this step. I like pan searing my salmon and then baking it in the oven to assure it's cooked all the way through, but if you are a pro at pan-searing fish, simply skip this step!