Seared Scallops with Sautéed Kale

18 Dec

My buddies at US Wellness Meats recently sent me a box of goodies to cook with, so for the next few weeks you’ll see some of their products popping up in my recipes. I couldn’t be happier – everything I’ve tried from this place is downright awesome.

When eyeing their Alaskan scallops, I knew some sort of pork needed to be paired with it, but I couldn’t decide. Bacon-wrapped scallops? Done to death. Sausage? Maybe. Both? Now we’re talking. So I whipped up one of my rare “thin-air” recipes – which are actually pretty hard for me to do, since I love recreating traditional recipes more than anything.

This dish only uses a few ingredients and seasonings on purpose – to hone in on the natural taste of the scallops, sausage, bacon, and kale. I also kept the portions a little small, so this dish is perfect for a light, tasty, and slightly messy lunch.

You’ll Need: (serves four)
1 lb Alaskan Scallops
1/2 lb Pork Sausage (1/2 package)
1/2 lb bacon, cooked and chopped (set aside 1 tbsp of the bacon grease)
1/4 lb kale, coarsely chopped
1 shallot, chopped finely
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp each salt and pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
3 tbsp butter

One great thing about scallops is that they don’t take long to thaw – overnight is usually perfect. In a pinch, you can run them under cool water until thawed, takes about five minutes.

This recipe calls for half of US Wellness Meats’ incredible sugar-free pork breakfast sausage, which comes in convenient 1 lb. packages so you can make your own links, patties, etc. We used the other half to make sausage patties the next morning for breakfast, they were awesome.

In a large pan on medium heat, sauté the sausage until cooked through. One note while cooking the sausage, be sure to break it up pretty often with a wooden spoon as it cooks. The point of this recipe is to let the sausage fall all over the kale and scallops, so you don’t want big chunks of sausage.

Once the sausage is cooked, set it aside with the cooked and chopped bacon. Be sure to keep your pan that you cooked the sausage in handy, you’ll be using it to sear the scallops. You’ll also notice that I didn’t include any instructions on how to cook bacon. This is a Paleo-centered blog, I’m sure you know how to cook it :)

Gently rinse your scallops in cool water and pat dry with a paper towel or two. Season the scallops with 1/2 tsp each salt and pepper, and set aside.

In a skillet, warm 1 tbsp of the bacon grease and 1 tbsp butter on medium/low heat for about two minutes.

Next, add the chopped shallot and sauté for about three minutes, until aromatic and slightly translucent.

When the shallot is ready, add the coarsely-chopped kale and mix it together with tongs until well-coated. Sauté for two minutes, turning often.

Add the red pepper flakes, apple cider vinegar, chicken broth, and the remaining 1/2 tsp salt and pepper to the kale, mix together, then cover and simmer for about four minutes. This is what it’ll look like when it is ready, and most of the chicken broth will have evaporated. Turn off the heat and set aside.

Heat the remaining 2 tbsp of butter in the pan you used to cook the sausage, on med/high heat, until melted but before the butter starts to brown – about two minutes.

Raise the heat to high and add the scallops.

Sear the scallops for about three minutes per side, until slightly browned.

That’s basically it – just plate the dish with the kale, then the sausage, then the scallops, and sprinkle the bacon on top. Quick, easy, and super delicious.

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18 Responses to “Seared Scallops with Sautéed Kale”

  1. Rebecca @ Crafting Order December 18, 2012 at 11:28 am #

    Wish I had all those ingredients handy! My mouth is watering looking at all those delicious photos!

  2. Alex December 18, 2012 at 8:22 pm #

    I looooove scallops, but we never eat them at home. I have no idea why, because they are delicious! Yum!

  3. Tina T. December 19, 2012 at 10:33 am #

    Love Scallops! Never thought about pairing it with kale though, might need to try this out!

    Thanks for sharing!
    Tina from

  4. rmnvb1975 December 27, 2012 at 7:13 am #

    This recipe looks absolutely delicious!

  5. Megan @ Allergy Free Alaska December 29, 2012 at 4:09 am #

    I came to your site because I saw the picture of this dish on Chowstalker (it looks divine), but then I noticed you call for Alaskan scallops in your recipe which earn you extra brownie points! ;) I would eat this meal any night!

  6. Sarah M January 6, 2013 at 11:51 pm #

    Such a great recipe! I wanted to do scallops, but the only decent ones at Whole Foods were cost-prohibitive, so I switched it up with some wild caught Georgia shrimp. Wonderful! Thank you for the recipe! Check out the end result:

  7. Pilar January 25, 2013 at 8:37 pm #

    This is AMAZING!!!

  8. Donna February 18, 2013 at 10:32 am #

    This is an awesome recipe but you left out the all important step of removing the chewy tab from the side of the scallops when cleaning them. It really makes a difference when eating the scallops. Otherwise, very delicious!

  9. Kristy Hawkins July 21, 2013 at 7:50 pm #

    I just found your site and am sooo happy I did! I made this dish tonight with baby scallops and extra bacon. I was out of sausage so I just added more bacon :). This was so simple and uber delicious!! Thank you for sharing your story and recipes. Very inspiring!


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