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kale salad in a white bowl
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5 from 1 vote

Kale Salad with Apples and Manchego

Packed with texture and fresh flavor, a shredded kale salad is the perfect healthier side dish to serve with your favorite main dishes. Apples, crunchy almonds, and tangy Manchego cheese balance the heartiness of the kale.
To adjust the servings in this recipe, click on the number next to servings.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Salad
Keyword: easy salad recipe, easy side dish, fall, gluten free, side dish, simple side
Servings: 6
Calories: 176kcal
Author: Jess Smith via Inquiring Chef
Cost: $8.00


  • Skillet
  • Mixing Bowl



  • ¼ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 ½ Tablespoons Lemon Juice
  • 1 Tablespoon minced Shallot
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Honey
  • ½ teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • teaspoon Black Pepper


  • 1 Tablespoon Cooking Oil
  • ½ cup Whole Almonds, chopped
  • 1 large bunch Kale, stem removed and leaves very thinly sliced (any type of large-leaf kale will work - I like curly-leaf or Tuscan)
  • 1 Green Apple, julienned
  • cup grated Manchego Cheese (sub parmesan or gruyere)


  • Heat cooking oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add chopped almonds and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes.
  • Combine all ingredients for the dressing in a jar with a lid and shake well until combined (or whisk together in a bowl).
  • Place kale in a large mixing bowl and add about ¼ of the dressing. Use your hands to gently massage the dressing into the kale leaves. (This helps to season and tenderize the kale.)
  • Add all remaining salad ingredients to the kale. Add dressing slowly, while tossing, until salad is dressed to your liking.
  • Serve immediately.


Make Ahead - You can assemble and dress the kale leaves up to 2 hours ahead. Wait to add the almonds, apple, and cheese until right before serving. 
Olive Oil and Cooking Oil - I differentiate these just because that’s how I prefer to cook. I use an all-purpose high-heat cooking oil like grapeseed, vegetable, or avocado oil to sear and saute most things and olive oil to add flavor to vinaigrettes. Feel free to use them interchangeably in this recipe.


Calories: 176kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 13mg | Sodium: 288mg | Potassium: 237mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 2251IU | Vitamin C: 30mg | Calcium: 202mg | Iron: 1mg