Roasted Kale Chip-Quinoa Salad with Pancetta and Tomato Vinaigrette is bursting with fresh and interesting flavors. It’s a great side dish, and it can also stand on its own as a main course.Did you know kale chips are not just for eating on their own!? Sure, they’re a great snack to munch on, but they have many other uses.
Different Uses for Kale Chips
- They can be a main ingredient in a salad like this one.
- Kale Chips can be broken into small pieces to garnish and add texture to soups and stews.
- You can also add them to sandwiches and wraps.
And so on.
I made this quinoa salad with pancetta for the first time yesterday, and I absolutely love it! It’s healthy, beautiful, sweet, crisp, and full of flavor.
It’s a side dish. It’s lunch, brunch, or dinner. And it’s so crazy delicious!
The Tomato Vinaigrette
A tomato vinaigrette has a lot of body to it and it can also be used as a marinade or sauce for chicken or fish. I love it with this Roasted Kale Chip-Quinoa Salad with Pancetta because it brings a lot of sweetness, which balances well with the strong flavor of the kale.
And here’s another idea, add a bit of the tomato vinaigrette to hummus for an outstanding dip for chips or vegetables! I love it.
In my experience, anyone who’s tried good kale chips loves them. Really. Even those who have never liked kale before love them.
And if it’s only chips you’re craving, you can just use the recipe below, with only the kale, the olive oil and the salt — stop there. However, this is one amazing, interesting salad that you really should try!
Here’s what I’d do if I were you . . . .
First, since this is one of those great weekend recipes, call a few friends to come hang out this weekend. Second, make twice as many chips as the salad recipe below calls for. Third, make the salad and put the extra chips in a big bowl.
Finally, serve all of it with some lemonade, some wine, or whatever suits you.
And if you’re just in it for the kale, you will also love Kale Salad with Tofu Croutons from Shockingly Delicious. It looks so good!
This salad is bursting with fresh and interesting flavors. It's a great side dish, and it can also stand on its own as a main course.
- 1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa
- 1 large bunch Black Kale, washed and dried
- olive oil
- coarse sea salt
- 3 ounces pancetta, thick cut, roughly chopped
- 1 1/2 cups tomatoes roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shaved
The quinoa should be made at least a couple of hours ahead of time so it can cool completely. (I usually make a large amount at once and use it over a period of several days, in a few different recipes.) You can cook the quinoa according to the package instructions -- typically you mix 1 part quinoa with 2 parts water, bring to a boil, cover, reduce the heat to low and cook for 15 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and cover 2 baking sheets with foil.
Use a paring knife to cut the tough center stem out of each kale leaf. Then tear or chop the kale into chip-sized pieces. Spread them evenly on the baking sheets, drizzle generously with olive oil, and sprinkle with the sea salt.
Roast the leaves in the preheated oven until they become crisp, about 10 to 12 minutes. The edges will be a bit darker than the center. Remove them from the oven as soon as you see this, otherwise the chips could become too dark, which will result in a bitter flavor. Set the chips aside to cool.
While the kale is in the oven, add the pancetta to a sauté pan over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until it begins to brown and become crisp, about 3 minutes. Set this aside to cool, too.
Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Use a fork to blend it completely.
Once everything has cooled to room temperature, combine the quinoa, kale chips, pancetta, tomatoes, cheese, and the vinaigrette. Serve at once! (The kale chips will begin to soften after about 15 minutes.)
Please note that I do not season this salad once all of its components are combined -- the chips, cheese and pancetta offer the right amount of seasoning to the salad.
Vegetarian? Simply leave out the pancetta.