Kale Salad with Pumpkin Seeds – Winter Squash in October

As I transition from my “Salads in September” to a focus on “Winter Squash in October” I will start with this tasty cross-over recipe that is still a salad, but includes the seeds from a favorite winter squash for the month of October, thanks to Halloween, the Pumpkin!  In addition to making a festive holiday decoration, pumpkins boast several nutrition benefits.  For this post, we will focus specifically on their seeds – here are 3 reasons to snack on pumpkin seeds today:

  1. Zinc – Pumpkin seeds are a great source of zinc that help support your immune system – a natural way to fight cold and flu season.  If you are deficient in zinc, you are also at greater risk of osteoporosis.
  2. Magnesium – This can help with your blood pressure and help your heart health.
  3. Tryptophan – While I normally associate Thanksgiving Turkey with tryptophan, this amino acid is also found in pumpkin seeds, and having these seeds as an evening snack will help promote a restful night of sleep.

Kale Salad with Pumpkin Seeds

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Ingredients & Nutrition Details:

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**also the juice from 1 lemon

Directions:

  • Dice the red onion and set aside
  • Measure out the pumpkin seeds and dried cranberries and set aside
  • Wash the kale in cold water
  • Tear the leafy part from the tough stems in bite size pieces
  • Spin dry in a salad spinner or pat dry with towel
  • Place in a large bowl
  • Slice the avocado in half, remove the pit, and scoop out the insides and place in the bowl with the kale
  • Squeeze the juice from the lemon over the avocado and kale
  • Using both hands, massage the lemon juice and avocado into the kale – the avocado should be spread to evenly coat all the kale
  • Add the onions, pumpkin seeds and cranberries and hand mix again
  • Divide the contents into 2 salad bowls for serving
  • Wash your hands, sprinkle a few extra pumpkin seeds on top to garnish and enjoy your salad!

Question for you:  Have you ever roasted your own pumpkin seeds?  Do you have a favorite recipe?  If yes, please share in the comments section!

Cheers³

Reni

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