I think there’s a huge misconception about salads, as they’re often thought of as boring, bland bowls of lettuce and vegetables without much flavor. Filled with spiced cauliflower, sweet roasted squash, and creamy avocado, this salad does not fit that expectation. Im a huge fan of salads, because they are the perfect opportunity to mix tons of different flavors, textures, and nutrients into one! This one in particular is a real winner, as it combines some of my favorite ingredients into one awesome meal.
The base of this salad is kale massaged with olive oil, lemon juice, tahini, and tamari. This is something I make constantly and eat with anything and everything! Massaging the kale helps break down its toughness and takes away its bitterness, making it ten times more delicious. It’s great to make a hug batch at once, because it will keep for up to a week in the refrigerator, which is perfect to have on hand for quick and easy meals or packed lunches.
Lately, I can’t get enough of roasted vegetables, which are another great thing to make in batches and keep throughout the week. This salad combines curry spiced cauliflower, thin, crispy carrots, and butternut squash, all of which are slightly sweet and perfectly balance out the tangy kale. Finished with lightly sautéed chickpeas for a boost of plant protein, and avocado for a dose of healthy monounsaturated fats (and because when in doubt, always add avocado,) this salad could not be any better! If you’re busy, try doubling or tripling the recipe and roasting the vegetables and massaging the kale on the weekends to have a quick lunch to throw together all week long. If you’re not into salads, I’m pretty sure this one will change your mind… I hope you enjoy and as always, let me know what you think!
- ½ cup cubed butternut squash
- ½ cup cauliflower florets
- ⅓ large carrot, chopped into thin slices
- ½ cup chickpeas, rinsed
- ¼ avocado, cubed
- 2 stems or 2 large handfuls of kale
- 2 tsp olive oil, plus more for roasting the vegetables
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp tamari
- 1 tsp tahini
- 1 tsp curry powder
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place the butternut squash on a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper. When the oven is preheated, put the squash in and set a timer for 40 minutes.
- Place the chopped cauliflower and carrots separately on another baking tray. Drizzle the vegetables with 2 tsp of olive oil and a pinch of salt and toss to combine, keeping the cauliflower and carrots separate from each other. Sprinkle the curry powder over the cauliflower and toss again until the cauliflower is evenly coated.
- Place this tray in the oven when the squash has 20 minutes left. At this time, flip the squash to make sure it cooks evenly. Flip the cauliflower and carrots when 10 minutes are left. Also at 10 minutes, check the squash. If the chunks are tender and browned, take the, out. If they are still slightly firm, keep them in the oven for the remaining time.
- While the vegetables cook, destem the kale if necessary, and chop into small pieces. Place the kale in a large mixing bowl with the lemon juice, tamari, tahini, and 1 tsp of olive oil. Massage the kale with your hands for a minute or two, until the dressing evenly coats the kale and the leaves become bright green and slightly soft.
- When the vegetables have about 5 minutes left, heat the last tsp of olive oil in a small frying pan over medium-low heat, and lightly saute the chickpeas for a few minutes, until warmed and tender.
- When the vegetables are done cooking, assemble the salad by placing the kale in a large bowl, followed by the squash, then the cauliflower and carrots, and lastly the chickpeas and avocado. Enjoy immediately!
Try making a big batch of massaged kale and roasted vegetables ahead of time, and this salad can be thrown together in minutes.