Avocado and Marinated Kale Salad Sandwich

June 20, 2021
3 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Prep time 1 hour
  • Makes 3 to 4 sandwiches
Author Notes

This is basically one of my favorite salads made into a sandwich—nothing fancier than that. The idea to put a kale salad into a sandwich came from Canto 6, my favorite bakery in my old neighborhood in Boston. —fiveandspice

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: Fiveandspice is the co-founder of Vikre Distillery and a longtime Food52 contributor.
WHAT: A kale salad, in a sandwich.
HOW: Allow kale and shallots to marinate in lemon juice, then toss them together with sliced radishes, Parmesan, and olive oil. Smear the bread with lemon-basil aioli and an avocado, and pile the salad between the two slices.
WHY WE LOVE IT: There's more to this sandwich than just bright, nearly-spring flavors—the lemony and garlicky aioli, creamy avocado, and earthy and robust kale are a symphony of textures between chewy, fresh bread.

Sandwich fan? Tune into our podcast, The Sandwich Universe, where co-hosts and longtime BFFs Molly Baz and Declan Bond debate and cook up iconic sandwiches every ‘wich way. —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • For the avocado and kale sandwiches:
  • 1 bunch lacinato kale, stemmed and shredded or very finely chopped
  • 1 small shallot, peeled and sliced very thinly (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3 smallish radishes, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup good aged Parmesan or Grana Padano, crumbled or shredded
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pinch salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 1/4 cup lemon-basil aioli (see below)
  • 3 or 4 ciabatta-ish rolls, sliced in half and toasted
  • For the lemon-basil aioli:
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 small garlic clove, chopped to a paste
  • 1/2 cup (approximately) neutral-flavored oil
  • 3 to 4 large basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 pinch salt and pepper, to taste
  1. For the avocado and kale sandwiches:
  2. Toss the shredded kale with 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice and a pinch of salt. Squeeze everything together with your hands several times to start to gently soften the kale's toughness. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, toss the sliced shallot with the remaining lemon juice and set aside. Let both the kale and the shallot marinate for at least 30 minutes. Then, toss them together along with the sliced radishes, cheese, olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste.
  4. For each sandwich, spread a toasted roll generously with lemon-basil aioli on one half. Smash half of an avocado on the other half and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Pile on some kale salad, close the sandwich and eat. Simple!
  1. For the lemon-basil aioli:
  2. Whisk together the lemon juice, zest, egg yolk, and garlic. Whisk in the oil very slowly; start with one drop at a time and work up to a thin, steady stream as the mixture starts to thicken and emulsify. You can also whip everything together in a blender or food processor, but aioli made by hand has a better texture (and makes you feel more like a superstar). When enough oil is incorporated to reach your desired thickness, you can stop adding it and fold in the basil and salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate for at least an hour before using to allow the flavors to settle and develop. (You can also just stir the lemon juice, zest, garlic, and basil into about 2/3 cup of store bought mayo and it'll still be really good).

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Megan
  • Laura415
  • Dina Moore-Tzouris
    Dina Moore-Tzouris
  • fiveandspice

10 Reviews

mauralindsay May 13, 2023
I added shredded chicken to the kale salad for a meal. Delicious.
newyork May 18, 2022
Delicious- I did substitute the egg for plain applesauce since I’m vegan…..refreshing and perfect
JG June 20, 2021
One of the most satisfying sandwiches ever! Only change we made was swapping the egg with silken tofu making a really surprisingly creamy aioli (+ a splash of vinegar).
jenny July 1, 2018
I'm not a huge kale fan or radish fan but this sandwich was awesome. Even my husband liked. I did cheat and use mayo...
Megan July 24, 2017
Made this tonight and loved it. I gussied up jarred mayo instead of making the aioli by hand. So delicious! But a bit messy to eat. Next time I'll buy thicker bread and pick out the center and fill the sandwich with the salad & avocado to hopefully make it a bit neater to eat. This is going in the rotation! Thank you!
Laura415 January 31, 2016
I can make an aioli, but I was thinking to make this on the fly. Can I use good mayo and add some EV olive oil, lemon, garlic and herbs in season instead just to save time in the morning?
fiveandspice February 1, 2016
Yes, I think that would work great!
Dina M. October 3, 2014
OOH! I have all these ingredients from my Blooming Hill CSA(we get Balthazar bread too--lucky us!) having this tonight!
Melissa C. September 30, 2014
How long will the aioli stay good for or do you need to use it all right away?
fiveandspice October 1, 2014
It should keep at least 3-4 days in the fridge.