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Kale & Brussels Sprout Salad with Walnuts, Parmesan & Lemon-Mustard Dressing

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Be prepared to love this salad of crisp greens, walnuts and lemony Dijon dressing. It tastes like a healthful, crunchy Caesar.

Kale & Brussels Sprout Salad with Walnuts, Parmesan & Lemon-Mustard Dressing

Made with crisp power greens, toasted walnuts, chunks of Parmesan and a lemony Dijon dressing — this salad tastes like a healthful, crunchy Caesar. Be prepared to love it, even if you’re not a kale or Brussels sprouts person. My husband, an ardent Brussels sprouts avoider, devoured it without even realizing there were Brussels sprouts in there (at least until I let my 10-year-old daughter in on it, who giggled every time he took a bite). Make it for weekday lunches or as a side to simply grilled or broiled salmon, Grilled Flank Steak with Garlic & Rosemary or Grilled Chicken Breasts with Lemon, Garlic and Herbs. Bonus: it keeps well and can be made ahead of time.

What you’ll need to make a Kale and Brussels Sprouts Salad

kale and brussels sprouts salad ingredients

How to make a Kale and Brussels Sprouts Salad

Begin by toasting the walnuts in a 350°F oven for 5-8 minutes, or until fragrant.

walnuts on baking sheet

Meanwhile, slice the Brussels sprouts. You can do this by hand or using the slicing blade of the food processor.

shaved brussels sprouts in food processor

Remove the kale leaves from the tough center ribs.

kale leaves on cutting board

Then thinly slice.

sliced kale

Make the dressing by whisking together the mustard, lemon juice, olive oil, shallots, garlic, salt, and pepper.

whisking dressing for kale and brussels sprouts salad

Pour the dressing over the greens and toss.

tossed salad

Add the toasted walnuts and Parmgiano-Reggiano.

adding the walnuts and cheese

Toss to combine, then let sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes or up to several hours to allow the flavors to meld and the vegetables to soften. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with more walnuts and cheese.

This recipe was inspired by a popular kale and Brussels sprout salad printed years ago in Bon Appètit.  

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Kale & Brussels Sprout Salad with Walnuts, Parmesan & Lemon-Mustard Dressing

Be prepared to love this salad of crisp greens, walnuts and lemony Dijon dressing. It tastes like a healthful, crunchy Caesar.

Servings: 6-8


For the Salad

  • 1 cup walnuts, chopped, plus more for serving
  • 12 oz Brussels sprouts, trimmed and shredded (about 5 gently packed cups after shredding)
  • 1 large bunch (about 12 oz) Tuscan or curly kale, thick center ribs removed, thinly sliced (about 5 gently packed cups after slicing)
  • 1 cup coarsely grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, plus more for serving

For the Dressing

  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice, from about 2 lemons
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots, from one large shallot
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper for easy clean-up. Bake the walnuts for 5 to 8 minutes, until toasted and fragrant. Keep a close eye on them; they burn quickly.
  2. Make the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, oil, mustard, shallot, garlic, salt, and pepper.
  3. Assemble the salad: Combine the Brussels sprouts and kale in a large bowl, and pour the dressing over top. Toss to combine. Add the most of the walnuts and cheese and toss again. Let the salad sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes (or up to a few hours in the fridge) to allow the flavors to meld and the vegetables to soften. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle more walnuts and cheese over top, if you like. Serve at room temperature.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (8 servings)
  • Calories: 256
  • Fat: 20g
  • Saturated fat: 4g
  • Carbohydrates: 13g
  • Sugar: 3g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Protein: 10g
  • Sodium: 432mg
  • Cholesterol: 10mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

Gluten-Free Adaptable Note

To the best of my knowledge, all of the ingredients used in this recipe are gluten-free or widely available in gluten-free versions. There is hidden gluten in many foods; if you're following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone with gluten allergies, always read the labels of your ingredients to verify that they are gluten-free.

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  • Definitely one of my favorite salads! everytime I serve it, there are “Yums” all around!

    • — Sue Hollingsworth on August 13, 2023
    • Reply
  • Such an incredible recipe. I’ve made it for bridal showers, family functions and just cut the recipe in half tonight to make it for my husband and I. I’ve substituted green onion through a garlic press when I didn’t have a shallot and the recipe is perfect every time. Thanks Jen, another winner, and a staple in our household.

    • — Melissa on June 3, 2023
    • Reply
  • I never comment on recipes, but this one is SO good, that I just have to comment. It is so delicious! I make this with a salmon recipe which has many of the same ingredients (lemon, Dijon, garlic), so it’s an easy meal that my entire family enjoys. While I love kale, others in our house are not always fans of kale, but they ALL enjoy this salad.

    • — Jackie on March 5, 2023
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  • This salad is amazing!! I recently discovered Lacinato Kale, and I’m so glad I did! I had some leftover from dinner and added chickpeas for a fantastic lunch!

    • — Laura Cox on January 22, 2023
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  • I love all of your recipes but my daughter doesn’t like mustard. Any suggestions on how to make the dressing without this core ingredient?

    • — moni52 on January 8, 2023
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    • I think you can get away with just omitting the mustard – it will still taste good. 🙂

      • — Jenn on January 10, 2023
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    • I make this with a really good burgundy mustard and you really can’t tell that it contains mustard. Maybe try and see.

      • — Laura on February 3, 2023
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  • Jenn, if I am using precut kale, how much do I use

    • — Carol J Winkelman on December 4, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Carol, I’d guesstimate you’ll need about 12 ounces.

      • — Jenn on December 6, 2022
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn, I was thinking of making this tonight but realized I don’t have any Brussels spouts. Would it be ok with just kale? Thanks!

    • — Andrea on November 26, 2022
    • Reply
    • Yep 🙂

      • — Jenn on November 26, 2022
      • Reply
  • One of our all-time favorite salads! If you are a Brussels Sprouts fan you will love the combination of all the ingredients. A must for this recipe is the Parmesan Romano cheese.
    The Caesar dressing is an absolute winner. Thanks for another outstanding and delicious dish Jenn!

    • — Celia M. on August 18, 2022
    • Reply
    • Delicious! I used one 12 oz bag of Brussels Sprouts and a 16 oz bag of cut kale, stems removed. I had to dub pecans for the walnuts and didn’t use the parmesan. I added Grilled chicken and it was a great lunch.

      • — Korey on April 17, 2023
      • Reply
  • Absolutely love this salad

    • — Louise on July 7, 2022
    • Reply
  • Silly question… do you cook the brussels sprouts?

    • — Samantha on June 8, 2022
    • Reply
    • Not silly at all – no, you don’t need to cook them. Hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on June 9, 2022
      • Reply
  • This salad is a new family favorite! It is fantastic!

    • — Sue Hollingsworth on March 3, 2022
    • Reply
  • I thought it was a little dry so if I ever try it again, I may increase the amount of dressing.

    • — Julia on February 27, 2022
    • Reply
  • I’ve made this salad several times now, absolutely delicious! You will crave it, like a lemony Caesar, I’ve also added apples & subbed almonds. Either way, so, so good!

    • — Angela B. on January 31, 2022
    • Reply
  • I made this for a family dinner recently and people were a little skeptical about a Brussels sprouts salad as they hadn’t tried one before. But everyone enjoyed it! I love how light and fresh it is.

    • — Stephanie H on January 27, 2022
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    • Can this be made a day or two ahead? Sounds amazing!

      • — Sarah on April 11, 2022
      • Reply
      • Hi Sarah, I wouldn’t fully make this more than 3 hours ahead of time. You could, however, prepare it without the dressing, cover and refrigerate up to a day ahead — then toss with the dressing before serving. Be sure to allow at least 30 minutes for the greens to sit in the dressing. Hope you enjoy!

        • — Jenn on April 12, 2022
        • Reply
  • Made tonight for first time and it’s delicious! We couldn’t stop eating it. Will definitely be making again and again!

    • — Danette Harlow on January 6, 2022
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  • Wow!! This salad is amazing— the 1 cup of parm is a real treat. Made as instructed.

    • — Krys on January 2, 2022
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  • I’ve been making this salad for years (and have been asked for the recipe many times!), and this year I decided to add it to my Thanksgiving table to have something bright, fresh, and green that doesn’t need to be cooked or reheated. This was the perfect Thanksgiving side dish. I sliced the brussels in the food processor, sliced the kale, chopped the shallot, ground the parm (also in the food processor), and toasted the walnuts in advance, so all I had to do was make the dressing and assemble it when the turkey was in the oven. Easy and healthy and so, so delicious.

    • — Wendy on November 26, 2021
    • Reply
  • Should this be served chilled or more room temperature?

    • — Carla Wasden on November 22, 2021
    • Reply
    • Hi Carla, It’s good either way, but I think it’s best at room temp. Emjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 23, 2021
      • Reply
  • I love this salad!! I agree it tastes even better as it sits. I serve it over a bed of warmed up grains (I use the Trader Joe’s harvest grains cooked in veggie broth) to make it a hearty, filling lunch salad. Thank you for the wonderful recipe.

    • — Ella on November 17, 2021
    • Reply
  • I made this tonight to serve alongside your Chicken Fricassee. It is so good! Such a flavorful salad. I will be making it again!

    • — Julie on October 31, 2021
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  • I’ve made this salad numerous times and it never disappoints. It’s always delicious. The dressing is one I keep on hand in the fridge for other salads.

    • — Naomi on October 26, 2021
    • Reply
  • Made this yesterday and it was a delight! Only two of us here so we have salad and a protein for lunches all week. I had a massive bag of raw almonds in the pantry so roughly chopped those up and roasted them in place of the walnuts, also I only added 1/8th cup of oil to the dressing and used an immersion blender to emulsify the mixture with 1/8th water. I imagine the your recipe comes out a lot richer with the full ingredients for the dressing but this is still delish as a lighter version.
    Thanks for another great hitter Jenn 🙂

    • — Laura on October 6, 2021
    • Reply
  • How early can I make the salad dressing

    • — Lea Poirier on September 30, 2021
    • Reply
    • Hi Lea, I think it would last nicely in the fridge for 3 to 4 days.

      • — Jenn on October 1, 2021
      • Reply
  • I want to make this salad for a book club lunch. Would you have any ideas as to what protein would complement it best. Thank you so much for so many wonderful recipes. You make me look like a star. I’m serving your French Apple Tart for dessert. It’s always a winner.

    • Hi Catherine, I especially love this salad with grilled salmon, but grilled chicken or steak work really nicely too. So glad you enjoy the recipes!

  • Is it a pound of kale after the ribs are removed or before?

    • Hi JR, It is before.

  • This salad sounds delicious! Would it be okay to add finely shredded cabbage in with the kale and Brussels sprouts?

    • Sure! Hope you enjoy. 🙂

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