Salsa-Braised Kale

4.2 (24)
Salsa-Braised Kale

Braising kale in salsa and topping it with cheese makes a delightful side dish for your favorite Mexican meal. Different brands of salsa have varying amounts of sodium. Sometimes prepared fresh salsa is the lowest.

Yield: 4 servings, about 1/2 cup each
Active Time: 10
Total Time: 25


  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large bunch kale, tough stems removed, coarsely chopped (about 16 cups; see Notes)
  • 1 cup store-bought salsa, preferably fresh
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup crumbled or shredded Cotija cheese (see Notes) or Mexican-style cheese


Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add kale and toss until bright green, about 1 minute. Stir in salsa and water. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer; cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the kale is tender, 12 to 15 minutes. Serve sprinkled with cheese.

Tips & Notes

  • Notes: Choose organic kale when possible. Nonorganic can have high pesticide residue.
  • Cotija cheese, also called queso añejo or queso añejado, is a salty aged Mexican cheese with a crumbly texture. Find it near other specialty cheeses or at Mexican grocery stores.


Nutrition Per Serving

calories 161
fat 7 g (2 g sat, 3 g mono)
cholesterol 9 mg
carbohydrates 22 g
protein 7 g
fiber 6 g
sodium 459 mg
potassium 649 mg

Nutrition Bonus Vitamin A (771% daily value), Vitamin C (197% dv), Calcium (26% dv), Potassium (19% dv)

Carbohydrate Serving 1

Exchanges 2 1/2 vegetable, 1 fat

From EatingWell September/October 2011