Happy New Year, friends!
How is 2018 treating you so far? Hopefully well.
To jump into the new year on the right foot, the entire month of January will include only sugar-free or no-sugar-added recipes!
I’m starting with my go-to Loaded Kale Salad. It’s easy to whip up for lunch or dinner, and elements of it can be prepped ahead of time so you can make it as an easy side or main throughout the week. Shall we?
This recipe starts with a base of hearty vegetables and requires just 10 ingredients total.
It’s also oil-free, naturally sweetened, nut-free, and, of course, plant-based and gluten-free.
I like to start by cooking my quinoa and roasting my vegetables, which takes the most time. If you know you’d like to have this salad several times during the week, double the amount of quinoa and roasted vegetables and reheat/use as needed to save time.
While the vegetables and quinoa are cooking, move onto the dressing, which consists of 3 easy ingredients: tahini, lemon juice, and maple syrup. A sprinkle of salt is optional, but it adds a bit more flavor. And if you aren’t into tart-sweet dressings, I’ve included a savory version in the notes.
All that’s left is serving! Add any additional seasonal vegetables or toppings you desire. I opted for broccoli sprouts and hemp seeds for added nutrients, protein, and healthy fat.
I hope you all LOVE this Loaded Kale Salad! It’s:
This would make the perfect weekday meal either for lunch or dinner. It also packs well, which makes it great for road trips (and even plane trips!).
While it’s delicious on its own, it would also pair well with my 1-Pot Vegan Minestrone, 1-Pot Red Lentil Chili, Vegan Cornbread, Vegan GF Cornbread, or Curried Butternut Squash Soup!
If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers and happy 2018, friends!
Loaded Kale Salad
- 3/4 cups (138 g) quinoa*, well rinsed
- 1 1/2 cups (360 ml) water
- 4 large carrots* (halved + roughly chopped)
- 1 whole beet* (thinly sliced)
- 2 Tbsp water (or sub avocado or melted coconut oil)
- 1 pinch sea salt
- 1/2 tsp curry powder (optional)
- 1/3 cup tahini
- 2-3 Tbsp lemon juice*
- 1-2 Tbsp maple syrup (depending on preferred sweetness*)
- 1 pinch sea salt
- ~1/4 cup Water (to thin)
- 8 cups kale (torn or roughly chopped // or sub other green)
- 1/2 cup chopped cherry tomatoes
- 1 ripe avocado cubed
- 1/4 cup hemp seeds (optional)
- 1/2 cup sprouts of choice (optional // I used broccoli)
- Heat a small pot over medium heat and add rinsed, drained quinoa. Toast for 1-2 minutes, stirring frequently. Then add water and bring to a low boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for 18-20 minutes or until liquid is completely absorbed. Once cooked, fluff with a fork, remove lid, and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 C) and add carrots and beets to a baking sheet. Add water (or oil) and seasonings of choice and toss to coat. Roast for 25-30 minutes or until tender and slightly golden brown. (This method is adapted from my oil-free vegetables recipe).
- In the meantime, prepare dressing by adding tahini, lemon juice, maple syrup, and salt to a small mixing bowl and whisking to combine. Then add water 1 Tbsp (15 ml // as recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) at a time and whisk until pourable. Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more lemon juice for acidity, salt for saltiness, or maple syrup for sweetness. See notes for savory version.
- Arrange kale on a serving platter or bowl and top with tomatoes, avocado, cooked quinoa, roasted vegetables, and any other desired toppings, such as hemp seeds or sprouts. Serve with dressing on the side, or toss to combine.
- Store leftovers (keep dressing separate for best results) in the refrigerator up to 3 days. Dressing will keep well covered in the refrigerator up to 1 week.
*For a more savory dressing, omit the maple syrup and lemon juice and instead add 1 clove garlic, minced, and 1-2 tsp coconut aminos!
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with dressings and without optional toppings (hemp seeds and sprouts).
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