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Kale Crunch Salad

Kale Crunch Salad

  • Author: Nicole | Fresh Apron
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3 minutes
  • Total Time: 8 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x


This simple Kale Crunch Salad will be your next go-to salad recipe. It's perfect for both a weeknight dinner or holiday side dish. Chopped kale is tossed with parmesan cheese and toasted panko bread crumbs, then drizzled with a mandarin vinaigrette. You can prep each individual ingredient ahead of time, then just toss together when ready to serve.



For the Salad

  • 5 cups kale, chopped with large stems removed
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded parmesan cheese (or grated)

For the Toasted Panko Bread Crumbs

  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper

For the Mandarin Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • juice of 1 small mandarin or clementine
  • juice of 1/2 small lemon
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • salt and pepper


  1. Massage the kale. In a large serving bowl, add olive oil to the chopped kale. Massage the kale for about 30 seconds to tenderize it. Set aside.
  2. Toast the panko bread crumbs. In a small skillet, heat olive olive over medium heat. Add panko bread crumbs and stir to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Cook about 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Watch carefully because they toast quickly!
  3. Prepare the salad dressing. In a small bowl, whisk together all the mandarin vinaigrette ingredients. (or you can shake in a jar) Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Toss the salad and serve. Add the parmesan cheese and toasted panko bread crumbs to the bowl of kale. Toss to combine. Drizzle the mandarin vinaigrette over the kale crunch salad and toss one more time to combine. Serve immediately and enjoy!


You can substitute red wine vinegar for white wine vinegar.

To prepare up to 24 hours in advance, store each individual component separately. The kale, parmesan cheese, and salad dressing should be stored in individual, air tight containers in the refrigerator. The toasted panko bread crumbs should be stored in an air tight container on the counter. Toss all the ingredients together just before serving.