This Kale, Brown Rice, and Veggie Salad is sweet and savory (and crunchy too!), and it’s bursting with brain-healthy nutrients. Kale and other dark leafy greens, including spinach, arugula, and collard greens, contain kaempferol, a flavonol that’s been strongly linked to reduce cognitive decline and the risk for Alzheimer’s disease. In addition, kaempferol has anti-inflammatory properties, which also play a positive role in brain health.
To add ease to this recipe—and mealtime in general—turn to nourishing convenience ingredients. For this salad, grab a carton of pre-washed baby kale (or spinach), boil-in-a-bag of microwavable brown rice, and pecan pieces. And feel free to customize the ingredients to your family’s liking. Swap pecans with walnuts, sliced almonds, or shelled pistachios; add toasted pumpkin seeds for even more crunch; try cooked quinoa or wild rice instead of brown rice; or give the salad a Tex-Mex spin with cilantro (instead of parsley) and lime juice (instead of lemon juice). To transform this sumptuous side dish into a main meal, top each colorful bowl with MIND Diet-friendly protein foods, such as cooked shrimp, salmon, chickpeas, roasted chicken, or canned tuna.