The most delicious blackened shrimp kale caesar is on the menu today!
It’s a simple yet flavorful recipe. There’s not much in that bowl, but it tastes like heaven! Promise. Pinky swear.
This is one of those salads that doesn’t need much. Clearly! All we have is some massage kale dressed in my favorite caesar dressing and some blackened shrimp.
THAT IS IT.
Oh and a few rogue pieces of shaved parmesan. I swear you don’t need much more. Both the kale and shrimp are heavily flavored. The shrimp acts like the (somewhat?) crunchy croutons to our caesar salad. The kale is chewy enough without being tough. There is texture and flavor and oh my heck what else do we need?
The shrimp is easy. You use melted butter and a mix of cajun-ish seasonings and spices to get the flavorful coating. Cook it in a skillet for a few minutes and you’re good to go. I guess if you didn’t want the skillet mess, you could also cook it on a sheet pan for 8 or so minutes like I do with my lime shrimp fajitas.
Then you’d have a sheet pan mess, but whatever! It’s worth it for a deeeelish meal.
The kale caesar? Well, I don’t even know what to say about that, other than this is my go-to for kale caesars! Sometimes we go through periods of eating this salad once a week. Eddie absolutely LOVES it, I think it’s his favorite salad that I make.
What I love about it is that it’s super flavorful on its own, but additionally, it makes a great base for practically ANYTHING.
Crispy chicken tenders? Done.
Salmon or shrimp? Easy.
Roasted chickpeas? Obviously.
Lots of roasted vegetables? YEP.
Everything you put on this kale caesar complements it well. Or I guess I should say that the kale caesar is what does the complementing, because it’s such a fantastic base!
It’s the perfect meal to add to your lenten friday line up. It’s also really great for dinner anytime at all.
And perhaps what I love most: the kale caesar is almost better the next day. YES. It sits in the dressing, basically massages in the fridge and the texture becomes even softer and the taste more flavorful. It’s a salad you can actually prep entirely before if you’d like! Just keep the shrimp separate and then mix everything at once right before eating.
Winner winner kale for dinner.
Blackened Shrimp Kale Caesar Salad
Yield: 2 to 4 people
This blackened shrimp kale caesar is loaded with flavor. Spiced, buttery shrimp pan fried until golden, then thrown on kale caesar salad. Delish!
- 1 to 2 bunches of curly green kale, stems removed and torn into pieces
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tablespoons greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- shaved parmesan, for garnish
- 1 pound raw peeled and deveined shrimp
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
Tear, shred or chop the kale and place it in a bowl. You can actually chop it as much or as little as you like – depends on how you like to eat your kale salad!
To make the dressing, add the garlic, yogurt, parmesan, mustard, vinegar, anchovy paste, lemon juice, salt and pepper to a food processor and blend until pureed. With the processor still on, stream in the olive oil until a creamy dressing forms. (This will make more dressing than needed, but you can store it sealed in the fridge for about 3-4 days and stir well before using.)
Add about 1/4 cup of the dressing (or even 1/3 to 1/2 cup if you use it on 2 bunches) on the kale to start and toss well to distribute, even massaging it with clean hands. Let it sit for 10 minutes. While the kale marinates in the dressing, cook your shrimp!
Pat the shrimp dry with a paper towel.
In a bowl, whisk together the paprika, oregano, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder and crushed red pepper.
Place the shrimp in a large bowl. Drizzle with the melted butter and toss well to coat. Sprinkle the seasoning all over the shrimp and toss well so they are all coated in the spices.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the olive oil. Add the shrimp in a single layer (you may need to do this in batches) and cook until golden and crisp on each side, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Do not overcook or the shrimp will be chewy!
Remove the shrimp and place it on the kale salad. Garnish with shaved parmesan if you’d like!
Look at that crisp.