The title of this recipe is certainly a long name for a salad, yet somehow I feel like the more descriptive, the better. Especially when it comes to salads, there are just too many out there these days; I want you to know what sets this one apart right from the beginning.
Secondly, I’m wondering how many of you actually eat salads on Thanksgiving? For me, it’s an absolute MUST. I pile my plate full of salad before anything else. I want the greens before the beige breads and golden brown gravy.
Fill me up with nourishment, then fill me up with that pumpkin pie comfort.
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Today’s post is short and sweet. I’ve been working on a MASSIVE holiday gift guide series that I cannot wait to release. It’s set to go live a few days after Thanksgiving so be sure to be on the lookout. I think I might have all of your gift needs covered which means no in-store shopping (so you can avoid crazy lines + people).
Last year both my body and my car got hit with shopping carts. No bueno.
But let’s get back to the salad.
I created this recipe months ago in anticipation of Thanksgiving. It’s truly the perfect blend of sweet and savory! The dressing is light, lemony, barely sweet but still tangy. The sweet cranberries and apples provide that seasonal flare that you long for during the cooler months coming. Oh, and how could I forget about the gorgonzola and candied pecans?! My favorite.
This salad requires some chopping of the kale and brussels sprouts, but the upside is that you can prep it all a day ahead of time! Triple bonus points for me.
A FEW TIPS:
Be sure to let this salad marinate at least an hour or two ahead of time before serving. It’s actually best when made a day ahead of time so the flavors of the dressing can sink into the kale and brussels!
If you love a true sweet and salty combo, I recommend adding a few slices of chopped bacon in. The contrast of flavors is truly exceptional.
xoxo happy salad-ing.
Shredded Brussels Sprouts & Kale Salad with Apple, Gorgonzola & Candied Pecans
A delicious, autumn inspired kale and shredded brussels sprouts salad packed with fresh apple slices, dried cranberries, candied pecans and gorgonzola, and served with a homemade dressing. It’s the perfect blend of sweet and savory!
- For the dressing:
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 teaspoon sugar (can sub honey or maple syrup)
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- fresh ground pepper, to taste
- For the salad:
- 1 pound brussels sprouts, trimmed, loose leaves removed and thinly shredded
- 1 bunch of tuscan kale, stems removed and leaves finely chopped into ribbons
- 2 medium apples, cored and thinly sliced (I've been loving SweeTango apples)
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup candied pecans, chopped
- 1/4 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
- OPTIONAL: 4 slices cooked turkey bacon, chopped
In a medium bowl, whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, sugar and salt.
In a separate large bowl, toss together shredded brussels sprouts and kale mixture with your hands. Slowly pour in dressing and use your hands to massage into the kale and brussels sprouts for about 5 minutes. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour or up to overnight to allow for dressing to soak into the the kale and brussels.
Once ready to serve, toss in apple slices, dried cranberries and chopped candied pecans. If you'd like you can add in chopped bacon at this point and toss salad again. Finally, garnish with crumbled gorgonzola. Serve immediately. Season with freshly ground black pepper.
I used store-bought candied pecans, but you can also make your own. Another great option is to toast the pecans in the oven for 5-7 minutes at 325 degrees F on a baking sheet.
Nutrition information does not include bacon as it is optional.
TO MAKE VEGAN/DAIRY FREE: Leave out the gorgonzola and bacon. Can add in diced avocado in place of the cheese
Recipe: Monique Volz // AmbitiousKitchen.com
Photography: Sarah Fennel // BromaBakery.com
If you make this recipe, be sure to leave a comment below! You can also snap a photo and tag #ambitiouskitchen on Instagram. I love seeing your creations and featuring followers!
You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Snapchat (username: ambitiouskitch).
Mmmm this salad screams MAKE ME! I love the idea of using the shredded brussel sprouts as lettuce in this recipe!! Genius!
Ughhh I’m all about brussels sprouts lately. I actually have a bag in my fridge–this salad looks awesome!
Oh my gosh this looks great!! I’ll have to leave out the gorgonzola cheese, but there’s so many other delicious flavors to enjoy!
I’m SO glad you posted this recipe! I would have never thought of using brussel sprouts in a salad before, and this looks absolutely scrumptious. Can’t wait to try it!
Pinned! This looks delicious!
I prefer either making my gifts myself or doing my shopping online. Or if I did buy it in person I did it months before the holiday rush. After working retail through college I cannot stand being in malls this time of year anymore. But I digress, this salad looks awesome! I want to eat it year round.
Totally making this for Thanksgiving!
the marinating tip is so essential! definitely makes these fall salads that much better
I could eat this everyday. Love the Brussels with the apples! And of curse the Gorgonzola – how could this be wrong!!
This looks amazing! A perfect healthy salad for my Thanksgiving dinner this week. Thanks for sharing!
I made this over the weekend and have been eating it all week for lunch. It’s delicious! Thanks!
Perfect timing! Going to a huge event tomorrow and need to take a salad. Among all the fattening, unhealthy offerings that I’m sure will be there, this will be a fantastic addition to the buffet that I can eat! Thanks so much!!
Ok hands down the best salad I’ve ever made with your stellar guidance of course! Made two times now and it keeps getting better each time! Thank you Monique!!!!!
Made this and took it to Thanksgiving dinner last night. It was great – a much-needed light, crisp, fresh dish! Thank you!
Ppl in my family are allergic to nuts (?) subistute??
Just leave them off!
Could you bake the brussel sprouts before shredding and serve warm?
Please fix the videos. Every time I come to your site, a completely unrelated video plays.
This is the best salad I have had in a long time. I made a big batch and ate it the next two days as well. I love that it lasts that long.
Amazing! So happy to hear that. This one gets more delicious over time 🙂
Made this yesterday for today. Quite time consuming to hand chop the kale and sprout as finely as they need to be. Since “one bunch” of kale from my grocer was huge, and way too much in proportion to 1 pound of sprouts, I recommend giving an amount by weight or volume in the recipe. The dressing was very tart for our taste so, more honey made it sweeter and more palatable. Everyone loved it.
Chopping the brussels sprouts can take a bit of time but the great thing is this salad makes wonderful leftovers, too! The dressing is great for customizing based on your tart vs. sweetness preference. Glad everyone loved it 🙂
This will be my #1 Kale Salad from now on. It was so awesome needed to share with my daughter, as fate would have it she wasn’t home, but my son-in-law was.
He grabbed a folk from the drawer and proceeded to chow it down with sounds of delight the whole time. Now I consider his thumb up sounds as a five star winner.
Thanks for turning a drab day into a happy, enjoyable moment.
So happy to hear that, Brenda! Love this salad. Perfect way to get veggies in (and I’m glad it was son-in-law approved!)
I was going to make this for Thanksgiving this year, but found out that one of the people I will be making it for is allergic to kale. Do you have any suggestions on a good substitute. Swiss chard?
Hi Allie! More brussels sprouts would be perfect in this (equally as delicious).
Love this! I’d never tried Brussels sprouts raw before but this has made me a convert!
Perfect as is although I’ve found it works just as well without the cranberries and candied pecans is you want something simpler for day-to-day. I’ve also experimented with this as a base and using some shredded red cabbage for colour. Has to be tried to be believed!
Amazing! Yes, the perfect base for your favorite add-ins 🙂 glad you enjoyed!
Do you think this would be good with fresh squeezed orange juice instead of lemon juice?
A wonderful Thanksgiving addition!! I swapped out the cranberries for dried cherries and it was a total hit at the table. Love the Gorgonzola as I don’t usually use that cheese🤗 Thank you!!
Perfect! So delicious 🙂
Loveeeee this salad. It’s so fresh and perfect for fall. Not to mention it seems to get better by the day in the fridge. We made it for thanksgiving and I’ve been making it every now and then ever since. It’s a great salad to make ahead and keep to throw on the side for lunch or dinner (just wait to put the pecans on so they don’t get mushy sitting in the dressing for too long). We also subbed pomegranate seeds for the dried cranberries and that was another good swap.
This one is perfect as the brussels sprouts marinate in the dressing! Such a great lunch or side 🙂
This will concert most people to eating Brussels sprouts!
Great for a festive occasion but I’ve made it without the nuts and fruit and it was still amazing. You can also sub in feta
Absolutely! Perfect for lunch any time.
So yummy and easy to make! If you don’t have a food processor, Trader Joe’s sells shredded brussels sprouts that work just as well.
That’s a great time saver! Happy you enjoyed it 🙂