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green salad in a bowl with wooden serving spook on the side

The Best Green Salad

  • Author: Lisa
  • Total Time: 25 min
  • Yield: 8-10 1x


This simple Green Salad with three lettuces, a bright lemon Dijon vinaigrette and parmigiana cheese, will delight and satisfy at any occasion, whether a holiday feast or a weeknight meal.


Units Scale

For The Vinaigrette:

  • 1/3 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil plus 1 additional tablespoon for massaging the kale leaves.
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 medium garlic clove, finely minced or squeezed through a garlic press
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For The Salad:

  • 1 bunch curly kale (purple is nice if you can find it) thick stems removed, leaves torn into bite-sized pieces.
  • 3 ounces baby arugula
  • 2 large or 3 small heads of endive, cut crosswise into thin (1/4-inch) slices
  • 1-2 ounces finely grated good quality parmesan cheese such as Parmigiana Reggiano, plus a bit more for sprinkling on top. (2 heaping tablespoons)


  1. Whisk lemon juice, mustard, garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Slowly pour in the olive oil, while whisking.
  2. Put the kale into a large bowl with one tablespoon of olive oil. Use your hands to massage the oil into the leaves, working for a minute or two until the leaves are tenderized. Add arugula and endive. Toss to combine. Add the vinaigrette slowly, tossing and tasting, until the salad is dressed to your liking. Add parmesan and toss again.
  3. Garnish with additional parmesan.


Tips For Success:

  • For this simple green salad to be the absolute best, use the freshest lettuces, good quality extra virgin olive oil and top notch parmesan cheese such as Parmigiana Reggiano.

Prep Ahead: 

  • The vinaigrette can be made a day ahead and stored in the fridge. Bring to room temp before using.
  • Kale leaves can be torn from their stems, washed, rolled up in paper towels, rolls sealed in ziplock baggies and stored in the fridge up to a day ahead.
  • Endives can be washed and stored the same way as the kale. Slice them just before putting them in the salad for maximum crispness and to prevent them from browning.
  • Prep Time: 25 min
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: no cook
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: kale, arugula and endive salad, easy green salad, best green salad recipe