This delicious kale and broccoli salad is loaded with cruciferous veggies, plus dried cranberries and toasted pine nuts. A lemon parmesan dressing with red pepper flakes adds sweet and salty notes and a hint of spice. It’s salad perfection, fit for weekday meals or holiday menus!
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I have to come clean. I don’t really like kale in most salads. There, I said it. I usually find this leafy green too bitter and too tough when it’s served raw.
In order for me to enjoy a kale salad, it has to be REALLY good. There needs to be some sweet, zest, salt, and maybe even some spice to balance all the flavors. When a salad hits on all of those notes, I’m fully on board.
This week, I challenged myself to make a kale salad that I really liked and could share with all of you. Most of the kale recipes I have on here are not salads. The couple salads that I do have are super delicious, so I knew I had set a high standard for this type of recipe.
Well, I think we did it, folks. I am proud to say that this broccoli and kale salad totally has my stamp of approval. I hope it gets yours, too!
It’s not at all bitter, and the flavors are fun and interesting. Plus, this super green, deliciously crunchy dish is very versatile. You can make it for lunch or dinner and serve it with a protein, or you can add it to your Thanksgiving or Christmas spread.
How to Make Kale and Broccoli Salad
Here’s a preview of the recipe steps. For the full recipe card, scroll down to the bottom of the post.
- Chop the veggies and get your other ingredients in place.
- Massage the chopped kale leaves with a little olive oil in a large bowl until softened. For more tips on this process, see my tutorial on How to Soften Kale.
- Add the broccoli florets, dried cranberries, and toasted pine nuts to the bowl and mix together.
- In a jar with a lid, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, parmesan cheese, shallots, honey, and red pepper flakes. Shake until well-combined.
- Pour the dressing over the salad, toss, and enjoy!
- When chopping the kale and broccoli, cut them into small pieces. Think bite-size. I think it makes the veggies much more palatable to have them in small, manageable chunks instead of pieces that require a few bites.
- You can substitute slivered almonds, chopped walnuts, or even pistachios for the toasted pine nuts. If you need this kale and broccoli salad to be nut-free, use sunflower seeds or pepitas in place of the pine nuts.
- I found these pine nuts that were already toasted at Trader Joe’s. If you need to toast them at home, just spread the pine nuts out in a skillet over medium heat. Cook for a couple minutes on each side until fragrant, being careful not to burn them.
- Leftovers keep well in an airtight container in the fridge for 2 to 3 days, even if the salad is already mixed with the dressing. A benefit of kale and broccoli being tough!
- If you are making the salad a few hours in advance (like for a holiday meal), I recommend adding the dressing then instead of doing it right before serving. The salad tastes best if it has a little time to soak up the dressing. Just remember to give it all a good stir before serving, and consider adding a squeeze of lemon juice if you want to freshen it up a little.
- Serve this salad with roasted chickpeas, crispy tofu, sliced chicken, or hard boiled eggs to make it a complete meal. It also pairs well on the side with my Vegetarian French Onion Soup with Lentils or my Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burgers.
More Salad Recipes
If you love this broccoli and kale salad, you may also enjoy the Chopped Kale Salad with Tahini Dressing and Kale Radicchio Salad. In the mood for a different salad? See the Arugula Apple Salad with Pecans, Roasted Chickpea Salad with Herb Yogurt Dressing, and Endive Orange Salad with Tahini Dressing.
I’d love to hear how you like this recipe! Rate/review using the stars on the recipe card or in the comments, and follow the Veg World on YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. Looking for something totally different? Browse the recipe library.
Kale and Broccoli Salad
For the salad
- 1 bunch curly kale - about 8 cups kale leaves
- 1 head broccoli - about 4 cups florets
- ½ cup toasted pine nuts
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- Prepare the kale by removing the leaves and discarding the stems. Chop the kale leaves. Add the kale leaves to a large bowl with a drizzle of olive oil (about a teaspoon). Massage them between your fingers for 2 to 3 minutes until tender but not mushy.
- Chop the head of broccoli into bite-sized pieces. Add the broccoli, along with the pine nuts and dried cranberries, to the bowl with the kale. Mix everything together.
- In a jar or container with an airtight lid, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, parmesan cheese, diced shallots, honey, red pepper flakes, and salt. Seal the lid and shake until well-combined.
- Pour the dressing over the salad, and toss well. Enjoy!
- Leave a rating or review by tapping the stars on this recipe card (above) or in the comments section (at the end of the post)!
- I was able to find pine nuts that were already toasted at Trader Joe’s. If you need to toast your pine nuts, put them in a skillet over medium heat. Let them cook for a couple minutes on each side until fragrant. Be careful not to burn them; keep a close eye.
- You can use walnuts, pistachios, or slivered almonds in place of the pine nuts. If you need the salad to be nut-free, use sunflower seeds or pepitas.
- Leftovers last for 2 to 3 days in an airtight container in the fridge, even if the salad is already mixed with the dressing.
- Consider adding roasted chickpeas, crispy tofu, shredded chicken, or hard boiled eggs to make a complete meal.
- If you need this recipe to be strictly vegetarian, you need to use parmesan cheese that is labeled as vegetarian.
Enjoy! – Lizzie