I’m going to start by saying this salad is heavily inspired by the version on Smitten Kitchen I  tried many years ago and became obsessed with. Over the years I’ve made my own small tweaks, shortcuts and ended up with what I’m sharing with you all today.

When I’m hosting and want something sophisticated, green forward and crave-worthy- I  find myself making this. I  prepare everything separately and right before serving- toss it all together. I  always get so many compliments on this because of the well rounded out flavors!

Tuscan Kale holds up really well so even if you chop it up a few hours ahead of serving- it won’t get all wierd and gross like iceberg or romaine. The breadcrumbs add a delicious crouton like experience and the grapes burst in your mouth to give you that juicy brightness that can be much needed with a more indulgent meal.

Leave any questions or comments on the post and I’ll answer!


Kale Salad with Grapes, Walnuts & Toasty Breadcrumbs

Servings 4


  • 1.5 cups red and green grapes, quartered or halved
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 bunch tuscan kale aka Dino kale, center rib removed
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated pecorino romano
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • 2 cups spinach or arugula

Dressing: Mix together the following ingredients in a jar and shake or stir well

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • few grinds of black pepper
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1 clove garlic, finely grated


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the walnuts on a large baking sheet and place in the oven for 10 minutes, shaking the pan once halfway. Let cool completely.
  • Meanwhile stack the kale leaves, roll them tightly and cut into long ribbons and then cut the ribbons in about 1/4 inch thick ribbons and then cut in half so they are shorter and easier to eat. Add the kale to the bowl along with the spinach or arugula.
  • Toast the breadcrumbs by spreading them and gently stirring them around on a flat non stick skillet with a pinch of salt, the olive oil and a small grated clove of garlic over medium low heat until golden and nutty but not overly brown. Empty into a bowl to let cool (if left on the pan too long they will continue to brown).
  • When you're ready to serve the salad, add the dressing to the greens, toss well to mix and then add all of the ingredients- adding the breadcrumbs very last, or serve the breadcrumbs right on top of each individual bowl/plate being served so they remain crispy.