A finely salad honestly makes all the difference, especially with a kale salad recipe. I have persuaded vegetable-hesitant people with a beautiful shaved salad where all components come together harmoniously. Plant-based salad recipes for the win! With this vegan kale apple salad, every bite has a little bit of everything for maximum flavour and texture enjoyment. The miso mustard dressing brings it all together and compliments the hearty veg and apple perfectly. Fans of this kale and sweet potato salad will love this one.
I have this chopped kale salad as 4 servings, but I was able to take down most of it myself while testing and photographing it. In a proper meal with a main and maybe a starch, 4 servings is accurate. We top the salad with toasted almonds, but toasted pumpkin seeds would be a delicious nut-free substitution. What kind of apples are best in salads like this? My pick goes to anything crunchy, sweet and tangy. Honeycrisp, Sweetango, Pink Lady, and Jazz are all great.
Miso mustard kale salad dressing & massaging the kale:
- Pantry ingredients like grainy and Dijon mustards, maple syrup, apple cider vinegar, miso, and olive oil are simply whisked together for this flavourful kale salad dressing. You can make this dressing ahead of time and keep it in the fridge for up to a week!
- Aside from the fine chopping, I think the most important step with this salad is doing an initial massage of the kale.
- With this recipe, you simple massage a few spoonfuls of the dressing into the sliced kale with your hands, along with some salt and pepper. This step softens the kale a bit and tempers that strong brassica flavour. Most of the kale salad ideas that I post here utilize this step!
If you’re in need of some time-saving, using trimmed and pre-chopped kale is a pro move! I would just recommend running your knife through it one time to get the finer shreds that we’re aiming for here. Even if you chop it yourself, you only need 30 minutes to bring this kale salad together. And if you love this flavour combo, I have plenty more chopped salad inspo in my cookbook :)
Chopped Apple, Kale & Parsnip Salad
Miso Mustard Dressing
- 1 teaspoon light miso
- 2 teaspoons grainy mustard
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- 1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- sea salt and ground black pepper to taste
- ⅓ cup + 1 tablespoon olive oil
Kale Apple Salad
- 1 bunch Lacinato kale, stems removed and finely sliced (about 4 cups of chopped and packed kale)
- sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 large apple, cored and finely sliced into matchsticks (I like Honeycrisp here)
- 1 medium parsnip, peeled and finely sliced
- 1 stick celery, finely sliced
- ⅓ cup chopped chives
- ⅓ cup sliced almonds, toasted
- Some time saving options for this recipe: seek out pre-chopped kale at the grocery store and if you have a mandoline slicer, use that for the apple, parsnip, and celery.
- If you have a small bulb of fennel on hand, shaving it up into this salad would compliment all of the other flavours nicely.
- If your celery comes with the beautiful inner leaves, they are a nice addition to this salad.
- Some crumbled, soft-style vegan cheese (like this one) would be great on the top of this!
- Make the miso mustard dressing. In a medium bowl, combine the miso, grainy mustard, Dijon mustard, maple syrup, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, salt, and pepper. Whisk these ingredients until thoroughly mixed. You might need to go in with the back of a spoon to mash up the miso and mix it in.
- Slowly drizzle the olive oil into the bowl while vigorously whisking to completely emulsify the dressing. Once you've added all of the olive oil, give it a final whisk. Taste the dressing and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Set aside.
- Add the finely sliced kale to a large bowl. Season the kale with salt and pepper and add 2 tablespoons of dressing to the bowl. Go in with clean hands and massage the dressing/seasoning into the kale for about a minute, or until the kale has softened slightly.
- To the kale, add the sliced apple, parsnip, celery, chives, and remaining miso mustard dressing. Season with a bit more salt and pepper and toss the apple kale salad until all the components are evenly combined.
- Lightly chop the toasted almond slices, and then garnish the top of the salad with them. Serve immediately.