Kale and Brussels Sprouts Salad with Cranberry Garlic Dressing

Kale Salad

You know those weeks when you feel like you don’t even have one minute to stop and breathe? Yep, that’s what this week has been for me. The farm is now in full swing, we’re painting our new wine shop, Little Sprouts starts in less than 2 weeks, Greg and I bottled our homemade wine, all of my friends are getting married and having bridal showers, and my darling goats just want to go for walksWe all have those weeks right? This salad is quick fix for busy weeks. So good, good for you and SO easy. I’ve already made it twice this week and might do it again tomorrow.

Kale Brussels Whole

We’re picking our own kale now which makes it even better. This year we’re growing 5 different types of kale. They are scattered throughout each of the plantings so I can’t even tell you when we’ll have each them. You might see a different type of kale every time you come into the market this year. There will be differences in the textures and colors and some are better for salads and others for soups. But if you ask me, all of the kales are basically interchangeable.

Kale in field

I typically don’t eat any of it raw. Raw kale can have a bitter taste but it is easily tamed by cooking, or in this case, just slightly warming it with a warm dressing. The picture above shows our kale growing in the field. Like our lettuces, we grow the kale on plastic to keep it clean and free of dirt. This one is a curly kale which has a very firm leaf. Great for kale chips!


This salad comes together really quickly so I start with the croutons so they have time to cook while I chop my kale and make the dressing. Just cube a few slices of sourdough, toss with olive oil and herbs and bake for about 15 minutes. I like how the centers of fresh croutons stay slightly soft :)

Kale Brussels Chopped

I don’t always put the brussels sprouts in this salad but needed to mix it up a bit since I’m making it every other day. You’ll hardly notice them as long as they are finely chopped. BONUS VEGETABLE!

Dressing Cranberry

I also make variations of this dressing each time. I use different dried fruits (raisins, apricots) or add vinegar instead of lemon juice. The key for the kale salad though is that it is a warm dressing to help break down the tough texture. And using your hands to mix it is a must. When you first pour the hot dressing on I recommend using a spoon until it slightly cools. Then use your hands and really massage the dressing into the kale.

Kale Salad 2

Add your extra toppings and enjoy! I only like to eat the leftovers the following day – beyond that, it gets too mushy for me. If I’m making it for a crowd I’ll just have everything chopped and ready to go and then just make the dressing about an hour before serving.

Kale Salad 3

Kale is so cool right now. Try it.

Kale and Brussels Sprouts Salad with Cranberry Garlic Dressing

  • Serves 3-4
  • Total Time 15 minutes


Kale & Brussels Sprouts Salad

1 bunch of kale, stems removed and thinly sliced
12 ounces brussels sprouts, thinly sliced
1/3 cup Hazelnuts
1/3 cup grated Parmesan

Cranberry Garlic Dressing

¼ cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup dried cranberries (or 1/3 cup golden raisins)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Salt and pepper

Sourdough Croutons

Half load of sourdough bread
Olive oil
Dried basil, thyme & oregano


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut the bread into cubes and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Drizzle olive oil over the bread and add a few pinches of basil, thyme and oregano. Toss the bread to coat. Bake for about 15 minutes or until lightly browned.

In a large bowl, combine chopped kale and brussels sprouts.

In a small skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add garlic. Cook for about 30 seconds, add dried cranberries and reduce the heat to low. Cook for about 2 minutes and remove from heat. Add lemon juice and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Mix to combine.

Pour the hot dressing over the kale and brussels sprouts mixture and toss with a spoon until the dressing has cooled slightly. When cool enough to touch, massage the dressing into the kale. Add the hazelnuts and parmesan and toss until well combined. Top with breadcrumbs.


  1. Ann Hoge

    Well Barb, I guess I’m going to have to try this so that I can at least say that I have eaten kale which seems to have taken over the world these days! Now, I have eaten hazelnuts and They are not my favorites. Could I substitute cashews? Also, would frozen brussels sprouts be okay? AMH

    • Barb Schramm

      Yes, Ann, you can absolutely use cashews or other nuts instead of the hazelnuts. I’ve used both walnuts and slivered almonds too! I would not recommend frozen brussels sprouts – I’d just leave them out if you don’t have fresh!


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