Crispy Kale Salad with Roasted Beets
This crazy delicious Crispy Kale Salad is the most asked for kale salad around our house. It's made with both raw kale and homemade kale chips, which gives the salad tons of awesome texture. It's our favorite!
Crispy Kale Salad magic coming atcha!
My friends, I've made us a salad with chips. Kale chips. Lots of crispy kale chips. Cause salad + chips = awesome.
Back in my kid-free days when I had a supper club (aka underground restaurant/ dinner party club/ closed door restaurant), this was one of the most asked for dishes by returning guests. Now it's one of the most asked for dishes from my family.
Why you need Crispy Kale Salad in your life:
- Kale chips. In your salad. Enough said.
- Candied pecans spiced with lots of black pepper that are the world's best ever snack.
- Parmesan cheese. Goat cheese. All the cheese, please.
- Sweet roasted baby beets.
- Kale chips. x2.
See those crispy kale chips up there? That's where all the magic happens. I used to use curly kale in this recipe. Since my little girl was born and life kicked into ‘OMG I had no idea I could be this busy' land, I take all the reasonable shortcuts I can. You with me? #noshame
Now I used prewashed bags of baby kale. I think the curly kale is the better option if you've got the time to wash and dry and sort through all the kale. If you do, go that route. Also, you're amazing.
If not, grab a bag of baby kale and pat yourself on the back for being a time-saving genius.
So this Crispy Kale Salad idea originally came from the blog A Tasty Love Story. It seems like so long ago that I first saw the recipe that I hardly remember it wasn't my idea. The recipe has changed over my years of making it, but the idea was hers.
BTW she makes hers with walnuts, which is a great idea. If you candy the walnuts like I've done with the pecans here, it's an even better idea. Mmm candied nuts.
Note on the crispiness of the crispy kale salad: the crispy kale does get less crispy when tossed with the dressing. Don't despair, the flavor and texture of it (even when coated in the dressing) is amazing.
Have a kale salad obsession? I *might* know a little something about that.
→ The Best Kale Salad (with bacon, Boursin cheese, and caramelized onions. OMG.)
→ Roasted Beet and Kale Salad with Maple Candied Walnuts
→ Creamy Kale Salad with Maple Tahini Dressing
→ Sweet and Creamy Kale Waldorf Salad
→ Baby Kale Salad with Pomegranate Seeds and Spicy Candied Pecans
→ Broccoli and Kale Salad with Blueberries and Coconut
If you love this Crispy Kale Salad as much as I do, make sure to give it a 5-star review in the comments below!
Crispy Kale Salad with Roasted Beets and Spicy Candied Pecans
If you love this recipe as much as we do, let us know with a 5-star rating!
- 1 lb. beets, about 6 small, cut into 8 pieces each
- 8 cups 10 ounces of kale leaves or baby kale, divided
- 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
- ½ teaspoon sea salt, divided
- ¼ cup shaved parmesan cheese, use your vegetable peeler for nice big pieces
- Optional: ¼ cup goat cheese
Black Pepper Candied Pecans
- ½ cup pecans, roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons honey, sub maple syrup for vegan
- 1 ½ tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 small garlic clove, grated on a Microplane or very finely minced
- A pinch of sea salt
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- Turn your oven on to 400 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Toss the beets in half the oil and salt and place them on one of the baking sheets. Put them in the oven and let them roast for 20 minutes. Turn the oven down to 350 degrees.1 lb. beets
- Toss half the kale with the remaining oil and salt and spread them out on the remaining baking sheet. Put them in the oven with the beets and cook the kale chips for 15-20 minutes. Watch them closely after 15 minutes as they burn easily near the end.8 cups 10 ounces of kale leaves or baby kale, divided
- While the beets are in the oven, make the candied pecans and the dressing. Place the pecans, maple syrup, and black pepper in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and continue to boil, stirring often, until the pecans are coated in a thick syrup, about 2 minutes. Add the butter and stir to coat the pecans. Transfer the pecans to a piece of parchment paper and make sure they are not touching each other. Once they dry (after a couple minutes) you can store them in a bag.½ cup pecans, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 1 teaspoon butter
- Add all the dressing ingredients to a bowl and whisk. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until the dressing is nice and creamy.2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, 2 tablespoons honey, 1 ½ tablespoons balsamic vinegar, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, 1 small garlic clove, A pinch of sea salt, 4 tablespoons olive oil
- When the kale chips and roasted beets are ready, add both to a large salad bowl with the candied pecans, raw kale, parmesan cheese, and (if using) the goat cheese. Pour the dressing over the top and toss.¼ cup shaved parmesan cheese, Optional: ¼ cup goat cheese
Generally a very popular recipe with my guests. I did notice people removing the crispy kale and not eating it. I used mainly whole leaves to make the kale crisps and dried them off as well as possible but there may still have been too much moisture on them. Many ended up with a brown color by the time they were crispy. I’d probably leave them out next time and either use store bought kale chips or another kind of greens, so it’s not all kale.
Things that my husband and I said while eating this salad.. “don’t forget this recipe”, “don’t tell anyone about this recipe” “HOLY F**k”, “my mouth is so happy”, “the lamb and the potatoes were great but this salad is amazing”, “I’m sorry I’m not finishing anything may I please eat the rest of the salad”
Another SPECTACULAR salad!!! 10000 stars, can’t believe I didn’t make this sooner. Weeknight rotation for sure. I paired it with hasselback baby Yukon potatoes and a big leg of lamb & some Syrah, so amazing. Thank you so much!
I accidentally got walnuts instead of pecans. Can I still follow the recipe — hoping it won’t make any of the difference! Any suggestions?
Walnuts will work well, too!
Its absolutely amazing, Thank You
I’m so happy to hear you liked it!
Fantastic!!! I used curly kale since I just moved to Vermont, and there is a farm that sells it de-ribbed and
bagged…how lucky! Also used walnuts and goat cheese since they are my favorite. The whole family devoured it, even the non-kale eaters. All of your recipes look spectacular!
That makes me so happy to hear! Hooray!!
Such a great idea to use kale chips! They really do add so much flavor and texture to the recipe. Might try using store bought if I’m pinched for time next time.
So happy you like the recipe! Store bought would totally work, too. 🙂
Hi Kristen, made this salad tonight for supper. Very delicious — loved the textures and all the flavours. I made a few substitutions due to what I had on hand. I only used one beet as my husband isn’t a huge fan so I added purple yams and white yams, feta instead of goat cheese and I used your dressing from your Winter Kale salad recipe as I had some leftover (that salad as well is very Yummy) the rest was as written. Keep these kinds of salads coming I just love them. Thanks for all your hard work putting your recipes together.
I’m so happy you liked it! I’ve got a few more salad recipes coming up so make sure to stay tuned!!
This looks great. one question — you say to roast the kale leaves and then at the end you say to put everything together with the fresh kale. How much of the 8 cups of kale are you roasting?
I’m sorry for the confusion! It was meant to say to roast half the kale. I’ve updated the recipe so it should be more clear now!