Roasted Sweet Potato, Quinoa and Kale Salad
Soo one week from today I’ll be in Vegas seeing Ms. Spears! Can we just talk about how exciting this is?? I’ve discussed my
crazy, unhealthy, infatuation obsession with Brit Brit many times on the blog (probably too much) and honestly have never missed one of her concerts to date, so you can bet I wasn’t missing her Vegas tour! I planned this trip with two of my sorority sisters along with their hubbies for four full days of living it up in Sin City. It’s also been WAY too long since I’ve had a vacation so this was much-needed. Like her or not, I think everyone is in agreement that Britney can certainly entertain – her show looks amazing!
Oh yeah and I’m also looking forward to warmer weather…..what is up with this snow lately? Sigh.
Anyway, now that I got my Britney excitement out of the way, here’s a new favorite salad of mine that I just LOVE. Sweet potatoes are incredibly good for you and I try to incorporate them into my diet every week, but let’s face it, some people are just die hard russet potato fans and simply can’t force themselves to make the change! My soon-to-be-hubs is one of them and so I was on a mission to find a way for him to not just enjoy sweet potatoes, but actually look forward to eating them!
Luckily I found a solution.
Roasting might be the easiest way to cook anything and for us, sweet potatoes roasted beautifully. All you do is chop up two medium sweet potatoes into cubes (the smaller you make them the more crispy they’ll be) and tossed them with a little olive oil, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano and chipotle chili powder. Now I’m pretty heavy handed and love my spice, but you can add as much or as little as you want. Roast these for about 30 minutes and prepare to be amazed. This may change the way you eat sweet potatoes, I’m just that confident!
So since we love eating sweet potatoes this way, I thought it’d be fun to add them to a salad. I’ve seen many recipes add sweet potato and quinoa with kale such as THIS recipe from Two Peas & Their Pod as well as THIS one from The Bojon Gourmet. Boy was I glad I tried this! I tossed everything with a simple red wine vinaigrette which coated the kale and the quinoa perfectly, but the real flavor came from the spices from the sweet potatoes! It was a beautiful marriage made in heaven…er I mean my kitchen… and has the perfect balance of greens, protein and starches. Hope you enjoy this as much as we did!
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- ½ tsp. onion powder
- ½ tsp. oregano
- ½ tsp. chipotle chili powder
- ½ cup uncooked quinoa
- 3 cups kale or mixed greens
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- For the dressing:
- 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp. minced shallots
- 1½ Tbsp honey
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Rinse and peel sweet potatoes, chopping them into ¼ inch cubes. Toss with olive oil, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano and chipotle chili powder until completely coated. Spread sweet potatoes out on prepared baking sheet in a single layer and roast in the oven for about 30 minutes, flipping them once.
- While sweet potatoes are roasting, using a mesh strainer, thoroughly rinse the quinoa. Add a ½ cup of water to a small saucepan and add rinsed quinoa. Bring quinoa to a boil, cover and reduce heat and simmer for about 13 minutes. Remove from heat, keeping quinoa covered, and allow it to sit for about 5 minutes then fluff quinoa with a fork.
- Combine kale, quinoa and cranberries in a large bowl and toss with dressing. Fold in roasted sweet potatoes, serve and enjoy!
Also did anyone else watch the Biggest Loser finale last night?? How amazing was everyone’s transformation?! This show is always so inspiring to me. I must say I was actually shocked by how thin the winner Rachel was (and I think by the look on Jillian and Bob’s faces, they were too!), but as competitive as she was the entire show, it didn’t really surprise me that she would push her body that far. Hopefully she did it the healthy way, she sure looked super pretty! Still 260 to 105 pounds is BIG difference!
I’d love to hear your thoughts though, was she TOO thin??