Cracker Barrel Brussel Sprout and Kale Salad

Cracker Barrel Brussel Sprouts and Kale Salad has to be one of the best ways to enjoy leafy green kale and Brussels sprouts. Sprouts N’ Kale salad is like a coleslaw sweetened with a maple dressing, craisins, and crunchy pecans. There is no better salad to get in all of these healthy green vegetables.

kale and brussels sprout salad with pecans and more

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Cracker Barrel Brussels Sprout and Kale Salad

If you have never tried this wonderful side dish option at Cracker Barrel, you have missed out on a delicious fresh vegetable salad. This crunchy and sweet salad is like a coleslaw.

This salad is made with fresh cruciferous vegetables. It is made with fresh kale, chopped Brussels sprouts, sweet Craisins, and has a nutty flavor with crunchy pecans.

The dressing contains maple syrup for a delicious sweet sauce. It’s easy to make for a weeknight meal, everyone who tries this salad thinks it will be a big hit! Cracker Barrel Brussel Sprouts and Kale Salad is the perfect recipe for picky eaters.

This kale salad recipe is perfect for those who hate to cook! No heat ever comes into contact with anything. No need to stir fry, bake, saute, or anything. Simply chop everything up, and stir it all together. Who knew a kale recipe could be so easy?

What Makes Cracker Barrel Kale and Brussel Sprout Salad So Good? 

Kale and Brussel sprouts are two vegetables that most people prefer to avoid. But this recipe might just change your opinion of these healthy and much-maligned ingredients.

The secret to the deliciousness of this brussel sprout kale salad is the sweet and slightly acidic maple dressing, along with the pop of flavor from the Craisins and the crunch of the pecans.

It may take some convincing to get your kids (or spouse) to try it the first time you serve it, but chances are they will beg you to make it again.

Making the Salad and Dressing

This recipe has two components: the maple dressing and the main salad.

This maple vinaigrette is both tart and sweet at the same time. It’s the perfect addition to this salad. In fact, if you enjoy this dressing you could use it on other salads.

Maple Dressing Ingredients

To make the maple dressing, you will need:

  • Vegetable oil
  • White vinegar
  • Sugar
  • Maple syrup
  • Kosher salt
  • Dijon mustard

This is not the time to reach for that bottle of maple-flavored pancake syrup in your cupboard. You want the real deal for this recipe.

For the best maple taste that will hold up the best against all the other flavors in this dish, try using a Dark Color, sometimes labeled as Grade B or Amber Grade A, maple syrup. If you can find it, late-harvest Escuminac Maple Syrup is just about perfect for this recipe. 

How to Make Maple Dressing

  1. Place all the dressing ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Whisk until thoroughly combined.
maple vinaigrette for salad

Kale Brussel Sprout Salad Ingredients

To make the salad, you will need:

  • Kale
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Craisins
  • Pecans

Don’t feel like you have to buy Ocean Spray’s Craisins for this recipe. Any brand will work, but it is a good idea to stay away from dried cranberries that don’t list sugar as an ingredient.

Natural dried cranberries are extremely tart, and you need the additional sweetness from the sugar to help balance out the bitterness of the vegetables.

kale, brussels sprouts, craisins, and pecans

How to Make Brussel Sprout Kale Salad

  1. Wash the kale, and pat it dry with a towel.
  2. Cut and discard the stem from each kale stalk. The stems can be woody and tough.
  3. Roll the kale leaves like a cigar and thinly slice them. Then slice them horizontally break up the long pieces.
  4. Wash the Brussel sprouts and pat them dry.
  5. Slice off the stem end of the sprouts stem. Cut the Brussel sprouts in half (stem end to top). Thinly slice the halved sprouts.
shredded Brussels sprouts, and sliced kale
  1. Place the sliced kale, Brussel sprouts, Craisins, and pecans in a large bowl.
chopped pecans, craisins, kale, brussel sprouts in a bowl
  1. Add the maple vinaigrette and toss to combine.
  2. Cover and refrigerate the salad for 30 minutes.
cracker barrel Brussels Sprout and kale salad

Kale and Brussel Sprout Salad Variations

You could modify this recipe to make it more your own. If you want to reduce the sugar, use flavored vinegar, or make other changes. You can do that when you make it at home. Here are some suggested variations:

  • Add 1/4 cup sliced green onion tops
  • Use a Sherry flavored vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • If you don’t have maple syrup on hand, you could use Mirin instead of maple syrup
  • A bit of ground black pepper
  • Want to reduce the amount of sugar? Reduce the number of craisins and reduce the sugar to 1/4 cup of sugar
  • Swap the pinenuts for pecans

Can You Shred Brussel Sprouts in a Food Processor?

Yes, you can easily slice Brussel sprouts in the food processor. Start by prepping the Brussel sprouts by removing any damaged or wilted outer leaves and trimming the stem-end with a knife. Give them a good rinse and pat them dry before shredding.

How to Shred Brussel Sprouts in a Food Processor

  1. Fit your food processor with an 1/8-inch slicing disc. 
  2. Put on the lid and load the hopper with Brussel sprouts.
  3. Turn on the food processor and gently press the food plunger down to feed the Brussel sprouts into the machine. 

What to Serve Brussel Sprout Kale Salad With?

This salad pairs amazingly well with simply prepared grilled or roasted meat. A lightly seared hangar steak or a roasted or smoked whole chicken is ideal.

If you are looking for something meat-free, think about heartier dishes like grilled marinated portabellas or black bean patties. Consider serving this dish as part of a charcuterie board for a light meal.

How to Store Kale Brussel Sprout Salad

Once you dress the salad, you should eat it as soon as possible. Leftovers don’t do well in the refrigerator. However, you can prep each part of the dish earlier in the day and assemble the salad right before serving. You can store the salad dressing in the fridge for up to a week.

I hope you give this recipe a try, it’s even better the second day. This is the ideal dish to make ahead for the holidays or bring to a potluck!

Before you go, let me know how you enjoy fresh kale and Brussels sprouts. This salad is a great way to get in your cruciferous vegetables. Did I mention it is so delicious?

brussel sprout kale salad with maple vinaigrette dressing.

Can’t get enough of Cracker Barrel? Try these copycat recipes!

More Brussel Sprouts Recipes

Be sure to check out more of my easy salad recipes and the best Cracker Barrel copycat recipes.

kale and brussels sprout salad with pecans and more

Kale Brussel Sprout Salad

Hands down this is an absolutely delicious salad with fresh Brussel sprouts, kale, and maple dressing. It's an easy Cracker Barrel copycat recipe.
5 from 8 votes
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Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Brussel Sprouts and Kale Salad, Cracker Barrel copycat recipe, Kale Brussel Sprout Salad
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 357kcal

Ingredients

Salad ingredients

  • 5 cups chopped Brussel sprouts
  • 5 cups finely sliced kale
  • 1/2 cup Craisins
  • 3/4 cup pecans

Maple Vinaigrette

  • 3/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup do not use pancake syrup
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil

Instructions

Salad instructions

  • Wash kale, and pat dry with a towel.
  • Cut the stem and discard from each stalk of kale. The stems can be woody and tough.
  • Roll leaves like a cigar, and slice the leaves as fine as you can, then give them a couple of horizontal slices to break up the long pieces.
  • Wash sprouts, and pat dry. Slice off the stem end. Place the stem end down, and cut Brussel sprouts in half. Lay the flat cut of the sprout on the cutting board, and then slice as small as you can.
  • In a large bowl add 5 cups of sliced kale, 5 cups of Brussel sprouts, Craisins and pecans.

Vinaigrette Instructions

  • In a small bowl combine, white vinegar, vegetable oil, sugar, salt, maple syrup, and dijon mustard. Whisk until this is blended well.
  • Pour well-blended dressing over vegetables, and stir well. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Notes

Possible variations
  • addtion of 1/2 cup sliced green onion tops
  • 1/4 teaspoon of liquid smoke to dressing
  • toast the pecans before adding them to the salad.  The flavor of toasted pecans is simply delicious 

Equipment

Cutting board
Sharp knife
Large bowl
small bowl
Mandoline (optional)

Nutrition

Calories: 357kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Sodium: 334mg | Potassium: 503mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 4598IU | Vitamin C: 97mg | Calcium: 116mg | Iron: 2mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home, and CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Ajay

    I have looked for this recipe since CB took it off their menu. I’ve asked every possible recipe site for it. You are my new favorite person! Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  2. Suzanne

    5 stars
    Delicious! I was so disappointed when Cracker Barrel removed this salad from their choice of side dishes. This tastes just like it. Thank you!

  3. CJ

    5 stars
    This recipe is amazing! I love it as is, but I usually substitute Splenda for the sugar and add broccoli to the mix.

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