Harvest Kale Salad

Harvest Kale Salad is a healthy lunch or dinner recipe that is made in just a few minutes. The kale is first massaged with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper, and then topped with fall seasonal toppings and drizzled with a homemade Manuka honey mustard dressing.

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A fall harvest kale salad that is made with kale, sweet potatoes, red grapes, honey crisp apples, dried cranberries, hemp hearts, goat cheese and pecans.

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • Harvest Kale Salad comes together in just about 20 minutes.
  • It’s made with simple ingredients and is full of flavor.
  • A salad that will actually leave you feeling full and satisfied.
  • Great recipe to enjoy for lunch or dinner.
  • The kale is massaged with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper making it soft and tender.
  • The perfect recipe for holiday’s or dinner parties.
  • It’s topped with a homemade honey mustard dressing.
  • Check out this Peach and Goat Cheese Salad for another great fall inspired recipe.
a fork holding a bite of the harvest kale salad.

Ingredients and Substitutions

These are the main ingredients and substitutions for Harvest Kale Salad. Be sure to scroll down to the recipe card at the bottom of this page for a full list of ingredients and instructions.

In order to make kale taste amazing, you absolutely must massage it with extra virgin olive oil and a touch of salt and pepper. This softens the leaves making them really tender and edible.

Sweet potato adds some heartiness to this salad without adding too much savory flavor. You can use any type of sweet potato you prefer such as a orange, yellow or Japanese.

Use a red apple for best results, I prefer honey crisp because they are crisp, sweet and full of sweet flavor. Any red apple will work in replace, using a green apple will add more of a tart/tangy flavor.

Pecans are crunchy and have a lovely sweet and buttery flavor, you can also use walnuts instead.

Use red grapes instead of green for a sweeter flavor.

Dried cranberries add a great chewy texture to this salad while bringing out those Fall flavors.

I personally love using goat cheese because it’s creamy, sweet but not overpowering. In replace I’d recommend ricotta, feta or blue cheese.

I love adding on a touch of hemp hearts (seeds) as you don’t taste them, but instead it adds a great source of healthy fats like omega-3 and 6’s.

The dressing is made with a blend of extra virgin olive oil, dijon mustard, Manuka honey, red wine vinegar and lemon juice.

all the ingredients that you need to make this kale salad in small individual bowls.

How To Make

ONE: Start by peeling and dicing the sweet potatoes into bite sized pieces. Then, add them into an air fryer basket and lightly coat with non-stick spray or your favorite cooking oil. Season with salt and pepper and give it a good toss before air frying at 350F for 20 minutes, shaking halfway through.

TWO: When ready, add the kale to a large bowl with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. Then, with your hands, massage the leaves for roughly 30 seconds or until they are soft and tender.

the kale leaves in a bowl massaged with oil, salt and pepper to make them really soft and tender.

THREE: Assemble the rest of your salad with thinly sliced apples, halved red grapes, dried cranberries, pecan halves, hemp hearts and goat cheese.

the salad in a bowl with all the toppings.

FOUR: To make the dressing, add all ingredients to blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Pour over salad and enjoy!

the honey mustard dressing in a small bowl with a spoon.

Tips and Tricks

It’s so important to massage the kale leaves! This is going to make them really soft and tender and taste amazing! Otherwise, you will have a very tough and hard kale leaf.

Air fry the sweet potatoes before starting on the rest of the salad.

Only massage the kale that you’re planning to enjoy right away, otherwise it will get soggy.

Thinly slice the red apples so they are crisp and delicate.

How to serve and store

Serve this Harvest Kale Salad as is with a glass of red or white wine. Feel free to add on your favorite protein as well, I would recommend a grilled chicken.

This salad is best served immediately. Leftovers won’t last. You can however store all the toppings separately and then massage the kale leaves when you are ready to enjoy.

Taste and Texture

This Fall Harvest Kale Salad is full of flavor! It’s crisp, crunchy and jam packed with bursting juices from the grapes and honey crisp apples.

The texture of the kale leaves are soft and tender, and then you have a few different textures from the juicy grapes to the tender sweet potatoes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I make the sweet potatoes ahead of time?

Yes totally! They save great in the fridge for 4-5 days.

Is this a good meal prep salad?

No, I wouldn’t recommend meal prepping this salad. The massaged kale leave will get soggy after storing them in the fridge.

Can I add on a protein?

Totally! I’d recommend grilled chicken.

Other recipes you may like:

If you make this Harvest Kale Salad, I would really appreciate a comment and rating down below, under the recipe card. Don’t forget to take a picture and tag me over on InstagramTiktok or Pinterest!

Fall Harvest Kale Salad

Fall Harvest Kale Salad is a healthy lunch or dinner recipe that is made in just a few minutes. The kale is first massaged with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper, and then topped with fall seasonal toppings and drizzled with a homemade Manuka honey mustard dressing.
10 Minutes
20 Minutes
Author - Hannah


Kale Salad
  • 2 heads kale, shredded
  • 1 tbsp EVOO
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 medium sized sweet potato
  • 1 honey crisp apple, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup pecans, crushed
  • 1/3 cup grapes, halved
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 tbsp honey goat cheese
  • 2 tbsp hemp hearts
Manuka Honey Mustard Dressing
  • 1/4 cup EVOO
  • 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp Manuka Honey
  • 1 Tbsp Dijion Mustard




2 Servings


  1. Start by preparing the sweet potatoes. I like to air fry these, however you can also roast them in the oven. Start by removing the skin and then chopping the sweet potatoes into bite size pieces. Place them in the air fryer and lightly spray with EVOO and season with salt and pepper. Air fry for 20 minutes at 350F, stopping and shaking halfway through.
  2. While the sweet potatoes are baking. Prepare the kale by massaging it with EVOO, salt and pepper. Don’t skip this step, it’s extremely important to make the kale taste amazing. Simply, add clean kale to a bowl with EVOO, salt and pepper. Then, using your hands really get in there and massage the kale leaves for 2 minutes or until the leaves are soft and tender. Set aside.
  3. Next, prepare the dressing by combining all the ingredients together in a blender or bowl and either blend on high speed for a minute or mix with a whisk for 2-3 minutes or until ingredients are well combined. Set dressing aside.
  4. Now assemble the salad. On top of the massaged kale, add on the thinly sliced honey crisp apples, air fried sweet potatoes, sliced red grapes, crushed pecans, dried cranberries, goat cheese, and hemp hearts. Drizzle with the homemade honey mustard and enjoy!


Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to tag @lovelydelites on Instagram
Please consider leaving a comment and rating below!

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This was seriously delicious!! Thank you for making me give salads a chance again. This will be in my weekly rotation for sure.