You know that feeling when you just want a bowl full of greens with some substance? I’m definitely into having a salad like this for lunch or dinner. The ingredients are absolutely divine – roasted sweet potatoes with a hint of cinnamon, maple glazed crunchy chickpeas, kale, pomegranate, nuts and assorted greens. And as if that’s not enough, a super easy and flavourful lemon tahini dressing to top it all off. Um…yes please.
I have so say, sweet potatoes are one of my favorite root vegetables. There a million things you can do with them and they pair well with virtually anything.The whole bowl is drizzled with an incredible tahini dressing which is just the right balance of nutty, sweet and tangy. If you’re into meal planning (which I have tried to be better at lately) you can make a big sheet pan of sweet potatoes ahead of time. Stick some of them into this salad and use the rest for dinner sides and lunches throughout the week.
Now, we talked about kale a few posts ago. The key to adding kale to salad is – MASSAGE. If you’ve never massaged kale before, don’t be scared. It’s actually quite therapeutic. All you have to do is place your washed and dried kale into a bowl, pour a little olive or avocado over the top and gently rub the kale between your fingers. It’s really quite amazing because after a minute that firm kale just magically transforms into beautiful soft leaves. I like to chop my kale finely for most salads but you can feel free to prepare the leaves any way you like. If you do massage it, the kale is easier to eat and to digest. It also removes some the bitterness from the leaves. Added bonus? Your hands will be nice and soft too after all the massaging.
How about the chickpeas? Well, I’m going to tell you something. I have yet to perfect a crispy chickpea but I think I came pretty darn close here. The best tip I can give you is to make sure those little suckers are SUPER dry before you season them and pop them into the oven to roast. This can be difficult to do but it’s not impossible to accomplish.
As for the rest of the stuff in this salad? Oh, you know me already. Whatever is in the fridge and pantry usually ends up in the bowl. I used pomegranate arils, leftover yellow beet and carrot slaw and some pecans which added a nice crunch to the end result. All of those ingredients are totally optional but really delish so I’m going to include them into the recipe below.
If you’re one of those people (like me) who love a salad with a lot of stuff in it. This one’s for you. I created it so that there’s no need to dig around for the good parts – it’s ALL GOOD. If you love bright and healthy recipes, you are going to go nuts for this salad.
- 6 cups chopped kale, washed and dried
- 1 cup packaged coleslaw mix (I used beet and carrot slaw)
- 1 cup mixed greens - I used baby spinach and butter lettuce
- ¼ cup pomegranate arils
- 1 large or 2 small sweet potatoes, peeled & diced
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- Crispy Maple Smoked Chickpeas - see recipe below
- Lemon Tahini Dressing - see recipe below
- Preheat oven to 450F. Make your chickpeas first (recipe below) then turn oven temperature down to 400 F and to make your sweet potatoes. While the chickpeas are roasting make your tahini dressing (recipe below) and store it in the fridge until you are ready to drizzle it on the salad.
- Peel and dice sweet potatoes into small cubes.
- Toss in olive oil and season with the cinnamon and a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Place evenly on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast in the oven for 40 minutes, flipping the potatoes over halfway through to ensure even baking.
- While the potatoes are baking, place kale into a large serving bowl and drizzle with oil. Massage with your fingers until kale is nice and soft.
- Add the slaw, mixed greens and pomegranate arils. Once the potatoes are baked let them cool for a few minutes before tossing them into the salad bowl. Top with chopped pecans or any nuts that you desire. Drizzle with tahini dressing, toss and serve.
- ¼ cup tahini (shake the jar well)
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeeze lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons real maple syrup, honey or agave
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- ½ teaspoon pink sea salt (or regular sea salt is fine too)
- 2 tablespoons water
- Add all ingredients to a small blender or jar with a tight fitting lid. Blend or shake well. Serve.
- Can be stored up to 7 days in the fridge.
- 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 1 tablespoons olive or avocado oil
- 2-3 Tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- sprinkle of sea salt
- Preheat the oven to 450°F and place a rimmed baking sheet in the oven while it preheats. I've *Pre-heating the baking sheet ensures the chickpeas crisp as soon as they hit the hot pan.
- Drain and rinse the can of chickpeas, then pat very dry with paper towels. I mean, PAT, PAT, PAT. Any moisture will cause the chickpeas to steam instead of crisp.
- When they’re dry, toss the chickpeas with the oil and seasonings. Carefully remove the baking sheet from the oven, place the chickpeas on in an even layer, and return to the oven.
- Roast, shaking the pan halfway through, until crispy, about 20 to 25 minutes.
- Note: feel free to play with the seasonings.