May is National Salad Month and there’s no better way to celebrate than with this colorful and crunchy Maple Balsamic Kale Chip Salad! These easy kale chips add the perfect sweet crunch on top. And the best part? No oven required. Just a microwave and 3 minutes of your time!
Try throwing these kale chips over other salads, pairing with fruit on a toothpick for kale “kabobs”, or eat alone as a delicious snack. If you’re skeptical about the idea of kale chips, see my One-Ingredient Microwave Kale Chips recipe here to learn the basics and see how soon you’ll be saying, “KALE YEAH!”
This salad is great because it caters to all different taste preferences. You get to choose your own greens, fruit, nuts, and toppings– I just provide you with the basic salad template and dressing. I personally love adding candied walnuts, strawberries, dried cranberries, and feta cheese. Let me know what your favorite flavor combo is!
- 6 ounces or about 8 cups loosely packed leafy greens of your choice (mixed greens, spinach, romaine, chard)
- 1 1/2 cups diced fruit of your choice, strawberries, blueberries, apples, etc
- 1/2 cup nuts of your choice, walnuts, sliced almonds, etc
- 1 bunch of kale, about 6 ounces, ripped into medium-sized pieces
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/2 tablespoon honey dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- Pinch of salt
- Optional toppings: dried cranberries, feta cheese, chicken
- For the salad base, combine leafy greens, fruit, and nuts into a large bowl. Set aside.
- For the dressing, combine red wine vinegar, olive oil, dijon mustard, maple syrup, balsamic vinegar, and salt in a small bowl. Stir until combined. For a thinner dressing, add water to desired consistency.
- In another bowl, drizzle half the dressing over the kale and toss until covered. Line a microwave-safe plate with parchment paper. Then, in batches, arrange the kale pieces in a single layer on the plate. Microwave the kale for 3-4 minutes, or until crispy, and repeat with remaining kale.
- Top salad base with kale chips, the rest of the dressing (or less, depending on how much dressing you like), and toppings. Toss and enjoy!