Kale Salad with Sesame Salmon, Broccoli and Lemon Tahini Dressing

This recipe is inspired by Jennifer Lopez’s favorite lunch dishes: the first dish is a kale salad with pumpkin seeds, queso and a lemon and olive oil vinaigrette, and the second is salmon with broccoli, bell peppers and other veggies. With this recipe, I decided to mesh the two together and create my own healthy powerhouse lunch! Of course, I had to put a delicious spin on it: toasty sesame seeds. I coated the salmon in sesame seeds (everything seasoning is also welcome) and then added a tahini to our lemon and olive oil vinaigrette.

Some other twists simply based on what ingredients I had: I used feta instead of cotija cheese; flax seeds and pistachios instead of pumpkin seeds; and added fresh dill on top of the salmon for a bright, herbal finish. Serve it all up with a lemon wedge and bam, $35 salad from sweetgreen in the comfort of your own home!

If you’re vegetarian or vegan, skip the fish and you will still love this salad.

Kale Salad with Sesame Salmon, Broccoli and Lemon Tahini Dressing

Crisp raw kale dressed, pistachios and flax seeds, plus feta cheese all tossed in a lemon tahini and olive oil dressing. Top it off with crispy, sesame coated broiled salmon and perfectly cooked broccoli.
5 from 1 vote
Total Time 30 mins
Course Main Course, Salad
Cuisine American, Mediterranean



  • Olive oil for seasoning salmon and broccoli
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon for seasoning salmon
  • Salt to taste, for seasoning salmon and broccoli
  • Fresh cracked black pepper to taste, for seasoning salmon and broccoli
  • 2 fillets salmon skin on or off
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds for salmon, can also use everything seasoning
  • 2 1/2 cups broccoli florets
  • 4 cups raw kale washed and torn into bite sized pieces
  • 2 tbsp flax seeds or seed/nut of your choice
  • 2 tbsp pistachios coarsely chopped (or another seed/nut of your choice)
  • 1 shallot minced (can sub for another onion)
  • 2 tbsp feta cheese or another crumbly, salty cheese
  • Fresh dill for topping (optional)
  • Sesame seeds for topping (optional)

Tahini Lemon Dressing

  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Lemon zest optional
  • 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
  • Fresh cracked black pepper to taste


Salmon and Broccoli

  • Set your broiler to high. If you don't have a broiler, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  • Fill a large pot 3/4 the way with water and generously salt the water. (It should taste like the ocean!) Bring the water to a boil.
  • As the water comes to a boil, thoroughly dry the salmon fillets off with a paper towel.
  • Brush each salmon fillet with a thin layer of olive oil, until the fillet is fully coated. Squeeze some lemon juice over each salmon fillet (as much or as little as you want.)
  • Once the salmon is fully coated in olive oil and lemon, season each fillet with a pinch of salt, a pinch of pepper, and enough sesame seeds to fully coat the top of the fish. Use any extra seeds to coat the sides of the salmon.
  • Set the salmon aside. Once the water in the pot is boiling, it's time to blanch your broccoli.
  • Put all of the broccoli florets into the pot of boiling water and let them boil for 1-1.5 minutes. Remove the broccoli from the water with a colander or slotted spoon, letting excess water drain from the broccoli. Then place the relatively dried off broccoli onto a sheet pan.
  • Drizzle olive oil onto the broccoli florets and toss them until fully coated. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and spread the florets onto 2/3 of the sheet pan, leaving some space for the salmon fillets.
  • Place the salmon fillets on the other side of the sheet pan, Put the sheet pan on the 3rd highest rack in your oven, and let it broil for 8-10 minutes.

Kale Salad + Lemon Tahini Dressing

  • In a salad bowl, combine the kale, nuts and seeds, feta, and minced shallots. Toss the ingredients together and set aside.
  • In a mason jar, combine olive oil, lemon juice (and zest, if using,) tahini, salt and pepper. Place the lid onto the jar and shake to combine emulsify. If you don't have a jar, whisk all of the liquids together until they come together and form a creamy tahini dressing.
  • Pour about 3 tsp of dressing onto the kale salad and toss until the greens are fully coated. Feel free to add more, until your heart's content.
  • When the salmon and broccoli are done cooking (the salmon will be crisp on the outside and have an internal temp of at least 145 degrees F) remove them from the oven and set aside.
  • Plate the salad on two separate plates or bowls.
  • Place a salmon fillet on top of each salad, and place the cooked broccoli florets next to the salmon. Drizzle a little more lemon tahini dressing on top of the broccoli.
  • Top the salmon with fresh dill, if using. Finally, sprinkle some extra sesame seeds on top of the broccoli and serve immediately. If waiting to serve the salad, wait to plate the salmon and broccoli. Cover the salad and the salmon and broccoli separately, and store in the fridge. Do not dress the salad until 15 minutes before serving.
Keyword jlo diet, jlo lunch, kale salad, omega 3 salad, sesame broccoli, sesame salmon, tahini dressing, tahini lemon

6 thoughts on “Kale Salad with Sesame Salmon, Broccoli and Lemon Tahini Dressing”

  1. 5 stars
    I’m not a salad person generally, but this has become my go-to quarantine lunch! It’s so quick and tasty, and unlike other salads I’m never hungry an hour later.

  2. 5 stars
    This is by far the best salad (and one of the best dishes) I’ve made at home during the quarantine. It was filling and super flavorful. The shallots and zesty dressing added a really nice flavor.

  3. 5 stars
    Made this for dinner tonight and added quinoa and avocado! The recipe was so easy and delicious! Took less than 20 minutes to prepare and cook. Definitely adding this to my weeknight dinner rotation! 😍

  4. This meal was SO. SO. GOOD. The salad with the feta and tahini lemon dressing was especially tasty. Another delicious Skyler meal!

  5. 5 stars
    We LOVED this salad. My husband who is not a salad person asked me to make it again! Here’s to healthy and easy on my dream quest to be more like JLo.

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