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    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

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Balsamic Kale Salad with Apple and Pear.

I think it’s becoming obvious that I really like kale salads.  I’m actually not a huge fan of cooked kale or kale chips, but I do love me a raw salad. 

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This particular salad is a combination of all my favorite things – savory (kale), sweet (fruit & maple), and tangy acid (balsamic).  It is great on its own as a lunch salad, or paired with something like brown rice or quinoa as an entrée. 

Balsamic Kale Salad with Apple and Pear

by Emily Malone

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 0 minutes

Ingredients (4 servings)

    For the Salad
    • 2 small heads Italian or Dinosaur kale
    • 1 large apple
    • 1 large pear
    • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
    • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
    • salt (to taste)

    For the Dressing

    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 1 tablespoon orange juice
    • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
    • 1 tablespoon maple syrup

    Instructions

    Rinse kale and tear the leaves from the stems. I prefer the flat Italian or Dinosaur kale for raw salads, but you can use any type you like. The curly kale is a bit heartier, and in my opinion is better suited for cooked applications.

    Thinly slice the apple and pear, and add to a large salad bowl along with the sunflower seeds and dried cranberries.

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    In a small dish, whisk dressing ingredients together until well combined.  Drizzle dressing over salad, and then toss until all dressing and mix-ins are well distributed.

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    Season to taste with kosher salt, serve, and enjoy!

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    It’s getting to be that time of year when I don’t want heavy, hot food as often, and instead prefer giant heaping bowls of refreshing salads and veggies.

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    This is a great salad to make for dinner, and pack up the leftovers for lunch the next day.  Light, refreshing, and healthy!

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    Enjoy!

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    51 Comments so far
    Leave a comment

    Leah @ DeLeahLicious     at 7:37 pm

    I’m currently obsessed with balsamic vinegar on my salads. I definitely need to make this!

    [Reply]

    Carrie     at 7:45 pm

    Yum! This sounds like a great salad! If I’m eating kale raw, I definitely prefer dinosaur kale. Usually around here I can only find curly kale.

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    Alex @ Raw Recovery     at 7:48 pm

    Looks delicious! I’m actually the opposite- I like kale chips but I most prefer my kale in a smoothie with some coconut water, an apple, a banana, and some chlorella tablets. I do love fruit in salads though so this is a recipe I’d definitely try! Have a good night, Emily!

    [Reply]

    Shay @ Whine Less, Breathe More     at 8:13 pm

    I live on salads during warmer weather. I’m ready for the salad season to begin!

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    Julie @ Wearing Mascara     at 8:34 pm

    This looks great. Oddly, I’m not a huge apple fan but I may try it with just pears. I love fruit but not apples! I’m so strange. :-)

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    LaceyAnn     at 8:48 pm

    I feel the same way about kale! Love it raw in salads and can pass up the chip and cooked versions.
    I have been ‘pinning’ kale salads like nobody’s business and this one is definitely making it onto my pinterest board. I may need a kale salad board all to itself soon!
    Thanks for the recipe, it looks great!

    [Reply]

    Lauren @ Sassy Molassy     at 9:05 pm

    This looks awesome and perfect for an early summer picnic/bbq!

    [Reply]

    Amber K     at 10:33 pm

    I have never tried it in a salad, but kale chips are horrible! And I even tried to add it to a smoothie, but unlike spinach I could not get rid of the taste of it for the life of me.

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    emmycooks     at 11:53 pm

    That is beautiful! I like leaving big leaves but have also enjoyed kale salads where it’s chopped into kale confetti. I posted recently about one has currants and pine nuts, but a lemony dressing instead of balsamic: http://emmycooks.com/2012/01/07/the-best-soup-of-2011/ I look forward to trying yours and agree about salads making a great summer meal…if and when summer finally comes to Seattle. :)

    [Reply]

    Emily Malone Reply:

    Summer IS coming! So much sun this week! :)

    [Reply]

    Tessa @ Amazing Asset     at 3:52 am

    What a lovely recipe for spring… so fresh, flavorful and nutritious! Thanks for the idea :)

    [Reply]

    Adrienne J     at 4:50 am

    This looks so tasty and easy! I’m excited to try it. I’ve needed some more salad variety in my life!!

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    Coco     at 5:08 am

    I love kale salads and cooked kale- I can’t get on board with the chips.. not so much. I have never made kale salad with sweet ingredients- and this looks great! Must try :)

    [Reply]

    Melissa @ HerGreenLife     at 6:22 am

    I love sunflower seeds on salads. I buy raw sunflower seeds from the bulk bins and toast them in the microwave or toaster oven. The toasting/roasting really gives extra flavor. If you’ll have leftovers, I recommend waiting to add sunflower seeds to individual servings just before eating so they stay nice and crunchy.

    [Reply]

    Emily Malone Reply:

    Good idea!

    [Reply]

    Katie @ Creature of Habit     at 6:26 am

    Look delicious! And just in time for spring! Of course it poured a boatload here last night and now all I want is hot soup but I’m sure the sticky days of summer will be here in no time and this will be the perfect thing to cool me off.

    [Reply]

    Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Pepper     at 6:32 am

    YUM! I’ve tried Kale and didn’t care for it. However when I was at Trader Joe’s a gentleman there told me he grows Kale and there’s so many varities, he recommended for me to try it again, so I will and use it with your recipe. I can’t wait!

    [Reply]

    Heidi from BundlesofHugs     at 7:25 am

    This is one of my favorite salads! I haven’t made in it a while but you’ve inspired me. Your salad dressing sounds delicious I’m so making this :)

    [Reply]

    Judy     at 8:04 am

    I live in Pinehurst, NC (Small village) and the only kale I can find is curly kale. But sometimes it is tough after I cook it….do you know why….did I just buy some old kale at the store? Any ideas.

    [Reply]

    Emily Malone Reply:

    Curly kale just tends to be a little heartier than the flat varieties. I think it’s tough too!

    [Reply]

    Robin     at 8:32 am

    The only kind of kale I have ever seen is curly, as well. I love this recipe, though, due to the everyday ingredients that I would likely have on hand. I dread buying a ‘special’ ingredient to try a new recipe, only to find I didn’t like the recipe after all. Then I’m left trying to find other ways to use it up.

    [Reply]

    Angela @ Happy Fit Mama     at 10:34 am

    I’m a big fan of Kale any way it’s served. I’m loving salads right now. Greens and fruit always hit the spot!

    [Reply]

    James     at 10:36 am

    That salad looks good. I just came across your site and will be adding it to my google reader, your recipes look yummy!

    [Reply]

    Emily Malone Reply:

    Welcome, James! :)

    [Reply]

    Brittany     at 10:58 am

    Kale is addicting. I love it in any way. This recipe looks great.

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    Leah     at 11:14 am

    Many noms. Thank you. I love anything that incorporates real maple syrup. #NewEngland

    [Reply]

    Alexis     at 11:42 am

    I’d love to see some of my favorite bloggers participating in this! A Food Blogger Bake Sale to end childhood hunger, such an amazing cause… http://blog.foodnetwork.com/fn-dish/2012/03/28/share-our-strength-food-blogger-bake-sale/

    [Reply]

    Tamara     at 3:06 pm

    Emily! I didn’t use kale *yuck!* but used this dressing on spinach salad and it was magnificent.

    [Reply]

    Emily Malone Reply:

    Haha glad you found your own use for it! :)

    [Reply]

    Dawn Reply:

    Tamara, have you tried baby kale? I, like you, don’t like kale, but I really do enjoy baby kale.

    [Reply]

    Tamara Reply:

    Baby kale is much better :) I also found that kale in the summer months is so much better than what I can find in the winter.

    [Reply]

    Emily @ Life on Food     at 4:59 pm

    Haha I am the exact opposite. I love the sauteed and baked versions of kale. Whatever way you eat kale it is still a great super food.

    [Reply]

    elizabeth Reply:

    Me too, I love sauteed kale. I blanch and freeze enough from the garden to last me the whole winter and spring. Cook it up with some garlic and a little tamari and eat it with some type of grain, I never get tired of it, except when I’m craving a crunchy salad.

    [Reply]

    Jen     at 5:05 pm

    raw kale question emily! you have got me totally hooked on raw kale now. i want to try just a simple oil and balsamic vinegar because i have this amazing balsamic i love. i doubt i would even need maple. for one salad how much each of oil and balsamic would you estimate to be good and do i need to add anything else? do i “massage” both the oil and balsamic or just oil? thank you so so much for your expertise!

    [Reply]

    Emily Malone Reply:

    For one person? I’d probably to a tablespoon of each – maybe a little less on the oil. Whisk them together and then massage!

    [Reply]

    Jen Reply:

    thank you so much! do you think it won’t be too bitter without any sweetener like maple?

    [Reply]

    karene angela     at 10:46 am

    I love kale and have been making the same kale salad for a while. I’d like to try this one but can’t eat balsamic (I get a migraine) what could I use instead?

    [Reply]

    Emily Malone Reply:

    Any other sweet vinegar. Maybe rice wine? It will taste a bit different than the original, but probably still good.

    [Reply]

    karene angela Reply:

    Thanks Emily, have all the ingredients for the salad and will make tonight

    [Reply]

    Sophie     at 4:51 am

    I know this seems quite random, but have you ever thought of becoming a wellness coach! (You are such an inspiration!)

    [Reply]

    Emily Malone Reply:

    Haha I haven’t, but thank you! Maybe some day!

    [Reply]

    Angela     at 6:14 am

    I keep looking for a way to try kale. This may be it :)

    [Reply]

    Shannon @ My Place In The Race     at 7:24 am

    Ummm yummmm!! :)

    [Reply]

    Sunday Funday: My Favorite Posts From The Blogosphere This Week! | Dash of Curry     at 4:18 am

    [...] I love kale, balsamic vinegar, apples and pears, so of course, when creatively paired together in one beautiful salad, naturally, I just wanna have it!  It’s basically raw, so as far as salads go, it suits me [...]

    Jacquelyn     at 1:51 pm

    Just made this! So yummy!!!

    [Reply]

    Sarah G     at 3:26 pm

    My husband never enjoys fruity green salads… but this was a major hit and he even requested it for work the next day and for the upcoming family reunion. Thanks for another simple yet refreshing way to mix unexpected ingredients!!

    [Reply]

    Holly     at 8:18 pm

    This has become my go-to easy work lunch. Thanks for posting it and best of luck for the next few weeks!

    [Reply]

    Trlberdrcem     at 12:04 am

    five fingers sale

    [Reply]

    What I Eat | BrittanyandTahn     at 3:27 pm

    [...] Minute Four Bean Vegetarian Chilli, Vegetable Quinoa Salad with Miso Dressing, Macaroni & Peas, Balsamic Kale Salad with Apple and Pear, Tofu Dippers, Roasted Chickpea Tacos, Cranberry Orange Lentil Quinoa [...]

    50 Recipes Under 5 Ingredients | Cooking for Bros | @cookingforbros     at 11:59 am

    [...] Kale Salad with Apple and Pear from Daily Garnish [...]

    sony xperia p     at 2:45 am

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    Can you suggest a good internet hosting provider at a fair price?
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    [Reply]

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