Kale Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing: Baby kale is tossed with apples, dried cranberries, toasted nuts, and bacon, then dressed with a warm and tangy dressing, taking this salad over the top.
I love salads of all kinds. Green salads, pasta salads, creamy salads, and the list goes on and on.
I remember the first time I had a Spinach and Bacon salad with warm dressing. I was helping out at a birthday party for kids I nannied for and the mom had given me the instructions for a warm bacon dressing to be tossed with spinach and hard-boiled eggs. Hmm…that made me a bit nervous. I was afraid that the dressing would be too greasy or too salty. I really wasn’t sure. But I made the dressing and of course tried the salad, and was blown away. The warm bacon dressing paired perfectly with the spinach and wilted it ever so slightly. I was in love.
Well, fast forward a few decades, and I am still eating that Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing. And while I enjoy the classic, I have an updated version that I think I love even more than the original. A Kale Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing.
I have simply swapped out the spinach for tender, yet sharp in flavor, baby kale and instead of hard-boiled eggs scattered throughout this salad, I choose sweet apple chunks, dried cranberries, and toasted pecans. The sweetness from the fruit lends itself so well with the saltiness of the bacon and dressing and the pecans add just the right crunch.
- For the Dressing:
- 1 tablespoon warm bacon grease (reserved from cooked bacon)
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- For the Salad:
- 8 ounces baby kale, washed and dried
- 1 sweet apple (such as Gala or Pink Lady), diced into ½ inch pieces
- ⅓ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup toasted pecans, chopped
- 4-5 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled.
- To make the dressing: combine ingredients into glass jar. Place lid on jar and shake until dressing is well combined.
- Toss ingredients together for salad and then top with warm dressing. Serve immediately.
And check out my tips to cook bacon perfectly in the oven without ANY mess over on Don’t Waste the Crumbs. It is the best method for cooking bacon EVER!.