Kale Barley Salad with Feta and a Honey-Lemon Vinaigrette (Video)

This kale barley salad has it all: crunchy sunflower seeds, creamy avocado, salty feta cheese, chickpeas and red onions, and is tossed in a tangy honey and lemon vinaigrette.  Perfect for a week-day lunch!

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I know that it has already been ‘back to school’ for most kids, but it’s about to be ‘back to school’ for me!

Except that my school is more like work.  It doesn’t end at 3, that’s for sure.  There were often long days, homework and work on week-ends.  That’s because I’m doing my PhD.

I am 4 and a half years in {!}, meaning that I am hopefully within a year of finishing.  There are definitely things that need to happen in this year, the least of which is writing my thesis {!!} and having my defense {!!!}.  Then you have to call me doctor, or I won’t answer you 😉

So yes…It’s time to roll up my sleeves, dust off my brain, and say hi to science again.

Kale Barley Salad with Feta and a Honey-Lemon Vinaigrette (Video)

Besides saying good-bye to my {somewhat} relaxing morning routine with Kai, I am going to have to start packing a lunch again!  And as much as I like peanut butter, PB sandwiches are a bit depressing.

That’s how this kale barley salad was inspired.  It is healthy, convenient, packed with goodies.  It will keep in your fridge for a few days {minus the avocado} so you can prep up a big batch and eat it for several days.

My favorite part about this kale barley salad {besides the flavor!} is the different textures.  Are you a texture eater?  I am!  This salad has the leafy kale, creamy avocado, crunchy sunflower seeds, smooth, chewy barley.  I love all the contrasting textures.

Kale Barley Salad with Feta and a Honey-Lemon Vinaigrette (Video)

Kale Barley Salad with Feta and a Honey-Lemon Vinaigrette (Video)

The base of the salad is kale.  Maybe you are on the kale bandwagon, maybe not.  I have found that the secret to eating raw kale salads is to marinate your kale in the dressing for at least 30 minutes before eating it.  It also helps to give it a bit of a massage when you wash it.

I added pearl barley to the salad to give it some ‘staying power’.  I hate it when I eat my lunch and am hungry an hour later!  Plus I absolutely adore the texture of the pearl barley….so smooth and chewy and slightly nutty in flavor.

Kale Barley Salad with Feta and a Honey-Lemon Vinaigrette (Video)

To add some protein to this kale barley salad, I threw in some chickpeas, feta and sunflower seeds.  We ate this salad for dinner one night and Ben also added some chicken breast, but honestly, I was good with how it is.

Then…the vinaigrette!  It is a tangy white wine vinegar, honey and lemon vinaigrette.  Super simple, and works perfectly with the kale, feta, chickpeas, sunflower seeds, avocado.

It all comes together as a slightly lemony, sorta tangy, all-round delicious, fresh, healthy, tasty salad.

More kale salads for us!

Kale Barley Salad with Feta and a Honey-Lemon Vinaigrette (Video)
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This kale salad has it all: nutty barley, crunchy sunflower seeds, creamy avocado, salty feta cheese, chickpeas and red onions, and tossed in a tangy honey and lemon vinaigrette. Perfect for a week-day lunch!
Author:
Cuisine: salad
Serves: 4
Ingredients
Salad
  • ½ cup uncooked pearl barley {just over 1 cup cooked}
  • 4 cups loosely packed kale; washed, stems removed, and cut into small ribbons
  • ⅓ cup crumbled feta
  • 1 cup chickpeas
  • 1 avocado, cubed {leave out until just before serving}
  • 2-3 tablespoons sunflower seeds
  • 2 tbsp red onion, finely diced
Vinaigrette
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • ½ tsp lemon zest
  • 2 tsp honey
Instructions
  1. Cook pearl barley according to package directions. Set aside to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk together the vinaigrette ingredients and toss with the kale. Make sure all of kale gets some vinaigrette on it, this helps to remove some of the bitterness of the kale.
  3. Once barley is cool, toss with the kale/vinaigrette and remaining ingredients {however you should leave out the avocado until directly before serving}

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