Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad with Lemon Dressing Recipe - Pinch of Yum
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Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad with Lemon Dressing

12 reviews / 4.4 average

Today’s post is sponsored by Kettle Brand! Their Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper chips are taking this holiday-friendly salad to the next level.

Return of the salad!

Except it’s not really a salad. Which is a good thing in our house – like for the times when Bjork says, “What’s for dinner?” and I tell him I have leftover SALAD in the fridge, and he gives me a look (😟) but then suddenly I put a bowl of this crunchy-satisfying brown rice garlic kale combo in front of him with a fried egg I REPEAT: FRIED EGG on top and he says, “That’s not a salad.” As a compliment. True love, yknow? ♡

This recipe – salad, skillet, whatever it is – is a delicious warm mish-mash of garlic kale, brown rice, lemon herb dressing, and crushed Kettle Brand Sea Salt and Pepper chips for crunch.

Friends, I am having a hot second with chips crushed up in salads.

You know when you go out to a restaurant and it’s so wonderful that they have those little wonton strips or tortilla pieces or crispy onions on top of all their salads? This is that, but three things –>

  1. Better, because it’s made at home which means food in your face in about three seconds flat.
  2. Better, because it’s not a mystery-fried-food-atop-a-salad situation as much as it is those natural, non-GMO Kettle Brand chips that you already have in your cupboard doubling their usefulness as snack AND salad topping.
  3. Better, because this brown rice / kale / chip / dressing combo can double as a fast and easy dinner OR a great easy side for any Friendsgiving celebrations you might have coming up.
Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad with a zippy lemon herb dressing! This side dish recipe is so simple and it compliments almost any main dish! |

In order for Friendsgiving (a friend-group celebration of Thanksgiving) to be successful, it needs to be at least half as stressful as real Thanksgiving, right? None of this rushing around beforehand to get every last little detail perfected. And we definitely don’t need any kitchen fails such as shattered glass toffee pan shards of years past finding their way into every crevice of the kitchen and almost taking off a few fingers in the process just minutes before friends show up. I mean, not that I know annnnything about that. 😑 Nothing at all.

What we need for this type of celebration is intentional time to hang out with friends ✔️ and permission to make easy, less than 30 minute recipes ✔️ that are broadly complimentary to almost any Thanksgiving dish ✔️ and I am going to suggest we do that by putting all-natural, crunchy Kettle chips with great salt and pep flavor and no MSG 👏✔️ in a brown rice and kale skillet with lemon herb dressing  ✔️ and then calling it all a salad.  ✔️

I’m pretty sure this is the definition of Friendsgiving.

Since we’ve all had our fair share of fails (glances around room for moral support) there are a few things that I like to try to do to keep entertaining casual and easy, one of them being the only-pick-a-few trick. I strategically pick A FEW elements of a recipe that I will make from scratch and a few products that are going to be awesome on their own. In the case of a recipe like this brown rice salad, I don’t need to do the crunchy toppings completely from scratch because Kettle’s got us covered, but the dressing is the one I choose to go homemade with. In theory, I love a recipe that is completely made from scratch // In reality, sometimes when you’re hosting, all those moving parts are just a little too much. I try to balance it out so the equation equals convenience plus home cooking plus really good taste.

I feel more relaxed already. ✌

Have you guys ever done a Twitter chat? Consider this your invite! I’ll be on with Kettle Brand and we’re going to talk Friendsgiving, recipes, entertaining, and all that jazzy-jazz. And you should join me! 11am, Thursday (tomorrow), be there! Jammies and a day-old top knot? NO ONE HAS TO KNOW. You can find us by using the hashtag #FriendsgivingFail.

Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad with a zippy lemon herb dressing! This side dish recipe is so simple and it compliments almost any main dish! |
Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad with a zippy lemon herb dressing! This side dish recipe is so simple and it compliments almost any main dish! |
Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad with a zippy lemon herb dressing! This side dish recipe is so simple and it compliments almost any main dish! |

Of course, beyond Friendsgiving, garlic kale and brown rice could easily be worked into a weeknight dinner recipe involving eggs or other protein. And the fried egg magic I mentioned at the beginning? With a little hot sauce over the top? Fah-la-la-laaaa. Highly recommend.

But the beauty of this especially shines at holiday dinner parties because it really can take on any flavor and go with anything.

It’s easy to make (30 minutes, guys) and even your most scrooge-like non-salad people will still love it.


Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad with a zippy lemon herb dressing! This side dish recipe is so simple and it compliments almost any main dish! |
Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad with a zippy lemon herb dressing! This side dish recipe is so simple and it compliments almost any main dish! |
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Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad in a bowl with a fork.

Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad with Zippy Lemon Dressing


Garlic Kale and Brown Rice Salad with a zippy lemon herb dressing! This side dish recipe is so simple and it compliments almost any main dish!



For the Dressing:

  • juice of one lemon
  • juice of one orange
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (more to taste)
  • 12 teaspoons honey

For the Salad

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (garlic infused is yummy)
  • 1 bunch kale (chopped, without stems, to yield about 4 cups)
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • a few handfuls of Kettle Brand Salt and Pepper chips, crushed finely
  • dried cranberries for topping


  1. Pulse all the dressing ingredients in a food processor until smooth.
  2. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the kale and saute until wilted to about half of the original volume. Add the brown rice and stir-fry for a few minutes together with the kale until everything is heated through. Add the dressing into the pan (start with about half of it) and toss to combine. Just before serving (can be served hot or cold), toss with the chips. Top with dried cranberries.


This is delicious with a fried egg on top (leave off the cranberries unless you like eggs + cranberries). The perfect easy dinner!

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: kale salad, kale and rice salad, lemon herb dressing

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This post was sponsored by Kettle Brand.

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  1. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Alright Lindsay, where can I find that bowl? I’ve seen you use it in lots of recent photos, and I kinda need it in my life. And the salad looks good too!

  2. Pinch of Yum Logo

    yes, I love crushed chips on everything! Sandwiches, soups, chili. i had some leftover Pringles that Ive been using, which are now kinda stale. I think it’s type to get those Kettle chips and make this salad!

  3. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Hey Lindsey! This looks so yummy and perfect for my friends giving next week!! I was wondering do you still figure out nutrition info for your recipes? One of my favorite things about Pinch of Yum! Helps force me to not eat the WHOLE thing 🙂

  4. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Looks lovely! Those chips are banned in my house (I eat them WAY too quickly), but I may need to make an exception for this salad. 😉

  5. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Ooh la laaaaa! I’m on the warm ‘salads’ train these days too and am totally down with this crunchy texture business you’re suggesting, as well as garlic and kale and eggs… and well, yes, this entire dish. You’ve nailed it again, Lindsay! 🙂

  6. Pinch of Yum Logo

    YUM. I’m all about putting chips on my sandwiches, so I bet this would be super tasty too! I might try this with unsweetened banana chips though since I’m trying to cut out processed foods and banana chips sorta kinda taste like potato chips…

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo

    YES! Loving the trend in healthier chips these days, and this may even get a certain teenaged hockey player in my house to eat more greens…particularly if I add a hard-boiled egg (he won’t go for the fried, silly boy). Good all the way around! 🙂

  8. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I have never tried egg and chips in salad.
    But it sounds amazing and I am sure I am going to try this recipe… 🙂

  9. Pinch of Yum Logo

    This looks so good, I’m definitely making this for dinner tomorrow! x

    Ariadna || RAWR BOWS

  10. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I prepared the dressing in advance for me to use next day. Is your dressing liquidy or more liquidy than most dressings! I may have to redo it. My orange and lemon might have been too big. Recipe says 1/2’cup olive oil. the amount of juice i got might have been worth 1 cup of juice. Thanks.

  11. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Thanks. I ended up throwing up my first batch. My orange and lemon were too big. What i did next time was to only use 2 tbsp each of orange and lemon juice (1/4 cup) so that the juices were no more than 1/2 the amount of the oil.

  12. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I love how simple this recipe is for weeknight dinners. Looks delish! The chips are a great touch indeed.

    Bummed to have missed the Twitter chat! 🙁

  13. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Lisa Frank

    I made this tonight and it was so yummy and healthy! It came together in a flash using Trader Joe’s bagged kale-Brussels sprouts mix and 2 pouches of their precooked brown rice. I was out of Craisins, so I subbed currants and also added shredded chicken. I served it on a bed of steamed hericort verts. Love it! Thanks.

  14. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Made this tonight with cajun baked cod and oven roasted asparagus. I subbed in frozen dill because I didn’t have parsley and used salt and vinegar chips. Sort of a healthy twist on fish and chips. Thanks for the recipe, Lindsay!