I’m the girlfriend you text when you’re scratching your head reading labels in the grocery store, the confidante you blurt your “I can’t tell anyone else!” bathroom shenanigans to and the handy science nerd who comes through with the best cost-cutting, time-saving health tips you don’t know how you ever lived without.
Do you eat fresh fennel? Regrettably, I’ve found this is one produce I’ve overlooked for far too long. These days though, I just can’t seem to get enough. And, this tasty, easy-to-make, citrus pomegranate fennel salad has quickly become a family favorite (even with the kids)! Paired with pomegranate seeds, citrus, and kale this vegan and gluten-free salad is loaded with nutrients and bursts with flavor and texture.
Fennel Health Benefits
Not only is fresh fennel delicious — crunchy and hydrating with a mild licorice flavor— but it’s packed with healthy nutrients and antioxidants.
In fact, throughout the years fennel has often been used for medicinal purposes due to its potential antimicrobial, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory properties. Studies are, of course, ongoing and inconclusive but seemingly promising.
Plus, fennel is a great source of potassium and Vitamin C. One cup of fresh fennel contains 17% of your recommended dietary intake (RDI) of Vitamin C, 10% RDI of Potassium, and about 3 grams of fiber.
If you’re unsure about how to incorporate this crispy bulb into your diet or not sure whether you even like the flavor of fresh fennel, this citrus fennel salad is a great place to start. And, a tasty way to change things up!
This citrus fennel salad has become one of my family’s favorite ways to eat fennel. Paired with pomegranate seeds, oranges, and kale this easy-to-make, crispy salad is loaded with nutrients and bursts with flavor.
1 fresh fennel bulb, including fronds and stems
1/2 bunch of kale
1 pomegranate (about 1 cup of pomegranate seeds)
1 medium orange or grapefruit
1 tbsp pumpkin seeds (optional)
1/2 orange, juiced
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp olive oil
salt/pepper to taste
1/2 tbsp dill, fresh or dried (optional)
Slice orange (or grapefruit) into quarters and remove skin. Cut citrus slices into small cubes and add to salad bowl.
Slice fennel bulb into strips and add to bowl. (see ‘how to cut fennel bulb’ below)
Separate kale leaves from stem and roughly chop into small bite-sized pieces. Add to salad bowl.
Chop fennel stems into thin slices and add to bowl. I like to slice my fennel stems into about 1/8 inch, but feel free to slice as thick or as thin as you’d like.
Roughly chop fennel fronds and add to bowl.
If using, add pumpkin seeds and mix thoroughly into fennel salad mixture.
In a small bowl, add orange juice, apple cider vinegar, olive oil, and if using, dill. Whisk ingredients together till emulsified. Place dressing aside until ready to serve.
To serve: Add desired amount of salad into a small salad bowl and top with dressing. Enjoy!
How to cut fennel
First, cut fennel stems and fronds from bulb. Cut as close to the bulb as possible.
Cut your fennel bulb in half and remove the tough core.
Then, cut each half into quarters and roughly slice lengthwise into thin strips. You can make strips as thin or thick as you’d like. I personally like them a bit thicker as I love the extra crunch.
Can you eat fennel stems and fronds? While you can trim off and discard fennel stems and fronds (the leafy greens found on fennel), I personally love to incorporate them into my salads. Doing so not only helps to reduce food waste but is a great way to add more flavor, texture, and fiber to your salad. It’s a win-win.
Madeleine is a Franco-American podcaster and blogger on a mission to inspire and empower women to live healthier, more eco-friendly, and conscious lifestyles. On her blog/podcast, The Wise Consumer, she covers topics ranging from nutrition and recipes to ethical fashion and eco living tips. When not working Madeleine is either spending time with family, developing new recipes, or trail running.