Endive, Kale, and Smoked Salmon Salad with Avocado and Pink Grapefruit

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Discover Endive. I received a complimentary box of California endive and I am being compensated for my efforts to promote California Endive; all opinions are 100% mine.

About a year ago, I had the opportunity to create this Braised Endive recipe in conjunction with Discover Endive and Kitchen Play. In researching that post, I learned a great deal about how endive is grown and about its health benefits, and it’s been a staple in my kitchen ever since.

When I was recently asked to be part of a group of bloggers dubbed “the OnDivas”, I jumped at the chance. What this means is that we OnDivas- Rachel, Carolyn, Dara, Paula, and I- are being sponsored in the near future by Discover Endive to help raise awareness about, and hopefully encourage more people to eat, California endive. We’re sharing original endive recipes on our blogs, we’re talking endive on twitter and facebook, and we’re pinning delicious looking endive recipes over on pinterest, too.

For my first post as an OnDiva, I was tasked with coming up with an endive appetizer or salad recipe. Here’s what I made: an Endive, Kale, and Smoked Salmon Salad with Avocado and Pink Grapefruit.

endive smoked salmon salad

I know this salad sounds sort of random…like I grabbed and threw together everything I had in the refrigerator. Well, I assure you, I approached this salad with a bit more thought than that.

My goal was to come up with a salad that’s gluten-free and low-carb, yet nutrient-dense, satisfying and delicious. A salad that counteracts holiday season over indulgence, but that’s festive and tasty enough to serve as an appetizer if you’re holding a New Year’s Eve gathering. Endive is a little bitter, yes, but that bitterness is offset here by the segments of sweet pink grapefruit and the bites of creamy avocado. The Tuscan kale adds lovely color and additional vitamins/minerals, and the wild smoked salmon lends protein and omega-3s, plus its rich, salty flavor.

If you’d rather add broiled or grilled salmon, that would work fine (or use any other smoked/cooked fish), or omit it for a vegan salad. Because of the acidity of the grapefruit segments (make sure to check out Brian’s beautiful post on segmenting citrus for tips on segmenting citrus), I personally do not think this salad needs any additional lemon juice or vinegar in the dressing…I prefer the simple drizzle of the avocado oil (or use olive oil instead).

The recipe below makes enough to serve one pretty hungry person as a light meal, or two as an appetizer. Scale the ingredients up to feed a crowd, or consider chopping all the salad ingredients very small, and spooning the salad onto whole endive leaves to serve.

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endive avocado salad

More beautiful and tasty endive salads:
My Endive and Satsuma Mandarin Salad
Endive Salad with Blue Cheese and Walnuts from Blue Kitchen
Endive Pomegranate Salad from Rawmazing
Smoked Trout, Potato, and Endive Salad from Thomas Keller

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Recipe for Endive, Kale, and Smoked Salmon Salad with Avocado and Pink Grapefruit


  • *1 head of California endive I used red, ends trimmed off and chopped
  • *1 big handful of Tuscan kale chopped
  • *1 pink grapefruit segmented (chop the segments in half if they are large), plus 1-2 tablespoons of the juice that drains off when segmenting the grapefruit
  • *1 perfectly ripe avocado diced
  • *3-4 ounces of naturally smoked wild smoked chopped
  • *1-2 tablespoons of finely chopped red onion
  • *2 tablespoons avocado oil or olive oil plus more to taste
  • *freshly ground black pepper


  • 1. In a medium bowl, combine chopped endive, kale, grapefruit segments, grapefruit juice, avocado, smoked salmon, and red onion.
  • 2. Drizzle avocado or olive oil over the salad and mix well. Grind fresh pepper over the salad before serving.

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18 thoughts on “Endive, Kale, and Smoked Salmon Salad with Avocado and Pink Grapefruit”

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  8. I can’t wait to try this recipe. Sounds (and looks) delicious.

    Just last night I made a simple kale, smoked salmon, onion, and lime juice salad. My inspiration was Rick Bayless’ smoked salmon and poblano recipe. http://www.rickbayless.com/recipe/view?recipeID=231

    I’m in the process of identifying lots of simple (and delicious) kale recipes for my customers and this will likely be a link I provide to them.

    Will be checking out more of your site!

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  11. Winnie, how beautiful–I actually love endive, and incredibly I have all the ingredients in my fridge right now, how serendipitous! I read on http://endive.com/ that 1 cup of endive per week reduces ovarian cancer by 75%! Even more incentive to make this, though I don’t need any. Happy new year!

  12. This is a very thoughtfully constructed salad. I might opt for adding grilled salmon to keep the sodium level down a bit. Love the grapefruit!

  13. Winnie,

    This looks delicious! I was thinking about how to incorporate it into my New Year’s Eve celebration, and your suggestion to serve the rest of the salad in the whole endive leaves is perfect! (We are not having a sit down dinner, but more of a finger-food buffet, so your elegant appetizer will suit the occasion nicely.)

    Thanks for all of your delicious work as an OnDiva. Can’t wait to see what you come up with next!

    on behalf of Discover Endive