Curry Salad Dressing Recipe

Curry Salad Dressing Recipe
Heather Nicholds, C.H.N.

This curry salad dressing is super creamy and bursting with delicious flavors. It’s from Dreena Burton’s cookbook – Let Them Eat Vegan!

If you haven’t picked up a copy yet it’s a wonderful book!! You can check out all the details, and order the book, here.

Curry Salad Dressing Recipe On Kale Slaw

Makes 5 1/2 – 6 1/2 cups
Wheat-free, Gluten-free, Soy-free, Oil-free

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Dreena said she thought I would really like this salad, which is the basic idea of coleslaw but with kale swapped in for the cabbage (which she isn’t too fond of) and some other special additions.

Well, I LOVE coleslaw! And I love kale. So putting them together in one giant bowl? Genius.

I’m definitely a fan of creamy curry salad dressing, too, and Dreena has a combination of flavors in this dressing that I could tell at first glance it would quickly become my new obsession. It’s all the awesomeness of the coleslaw dressing my mom used to make, but with a little hint of curry to give it a little pizzazz.

Now, I’ve never been a fan of fennel. I don’t like the black licorice flavor at all, so I tend to steer clear. I was going to take Dreena’s suggestion on substituting it for jicama or cucumber.

But then my friend Ricki Heller, of, just wrote an article about getting over fennel phobia. She shared some info on how healthy fennel is and tips on how to enjoy it.

One thing Ricki mentioned is that although she hates it cooked, she loves it raw. So I decided it was worth a try. My final verdict in the taste test at the end of the video is that I liked the raw fennel! I suspect that Dreena’s super tasty curry salad dressing might have helped, though 😉

Here is Dreena’s recipe, which she generously allowed me to reprint for you in full, from her brand-new cookbook Let Them Eat Vegan!


I’ve never cared much for traditional coleslaw, as I’ve never cared much for cabbage. But this slaw is a fresh take with nutrient-rich kale, along with crunchy carrots, fennel, and a touch of sweetness from apples and cranberries. The dressing really brings this slaw to life — don’t skip it!

  • 1 small to medium-size apple, cored and julienned (3/4 to 1 cup), tossed in 1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 1/2 – 3 cups julienned kale (leaves cut/torn from stems and stems discarded) (see note)
  • 1 cup very thinly sliced or julienned fennel
  • 1/4 cup cranberries or raisins
  • 2/3 – 3/4 cup Creamy Curried Almond Dressing (or more, if desired; recipe follows)
  • 2 to 4 Tablespoons sliced or chopped raw almonds
  • Extra salt and pepper to taste


  1. Place the apple, vegetables, and cranberries in a bowl and toss. Add the dressing, starting with about 2/3 cup and adding more as desired, if you want a thicker coating of dressing. Toss to coat well, then let sit for 5 minutes or more to allow the kale leaves to soften slightly in the dressing.
  2. Serve, garnishing with a light sprinkling of almonds and extra salt and pepper, if desired.

If This Apron Could Talk:

  • Kale salads can be quite versatile. Try another thick, creamy nut- or seed-based dressing, such as Citrus Tahini Dressing, Creamy Cumin-Spiced Dressing, or DJ’s Hummus Salad Dressing. The key is to coat the leaves nicely, and let the salad sit for a few minutes before serving.
  • If fennel isn’t your thing, substitute julienned jicama, thinly sliced celery (cut on a diagonal), or julienned red bell pepper, or some combination of these ingredients.
  • If you aren’t sure if you’ll like this much kale in the salad, try starting with 2 to 21/2 cups, making up the difference with extra grated carrot or fennel.
  • Other veggies you can consider adding include chopped or finely sliced cucumber, red bell pepper, cherry tomatoes, grated beet (“pretty in pink” salad, anyone?). Or try some zucchini ribbons: Use a vegetable peeler to make thick ribbons—these can be the base of a salad all on their own! And other dried fruit, such as apricots, goji berries, and raisins, can be interchanged with the cranberries, if you prefer.


Makes about 1 generous cup.
Wheat-free, Gluten-free, Soy-free, Oil-free

This dressing will definitely cling to your greens, and can easily be used as a dip as well. It is one of my favorites, with a very subtle curry flavor in a creamy, slightly sweet base. This is also the dressing for Kale-slaw with Curried Almond Dressing, a modern makeover of traditional coleslaw.

  • 1/2 cup raw almonds
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons pure maple syrup or agave nectar
  • 2/3 cup water (or more to thin as needed; see note)
  • 1 very small clove garlic
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper (optional)
  • 1/8 teaspoon curry powder, or more to taste (see note)


  1. Using a standing blender or an immersion blender and deep cup or jar, puree all the ingredients (starting with 1/2 cup of the water) until very smooth. (A high-powered blender such as a Blendtec works best to smooth out the dressing; using an immersion blender or regular blender will leave a little more texture and take a little longer.) Add additional curry to taste, and additional water to thin as desired (see note).

Notes: I like using about 1/8 rounded teaspoon of curry powder in this dressing, for a very muted flavor. But if you love curry, feel free to use more than this, adjusting to your own taste.

Serving Suggestions: I first tinkered with this recipe for a salad dressing. After making it, I realized it would work equally well as a dip. If using as a dip, use just 1/3 to 1/2 cup of water to puree and then refrigerate it, adding extra water later, if desired, to thin (it will thicken considerably after chilling). If using as a salad dressing, you can keep it thick, or thin it more as you prefer. I like it with about 2/3 cup of water as a salad dressing, which keeps it fairly thick, almost like a Caesar dressing consistency.

From the book Let Them Eat Vegan! by Dreena Burton. Excerpted by arrangement with Da Capo Lifelong, a member of the Perseus Books Group. Copyright © 2012. Photo by Hannah Kaminsky


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