I was in dire need of some vegetables this week, so I made this BIG delicious Sweet Potato and Kale Salad. This salad is super hearty, thanks to the kale and roasted sweet potato. You can eat it as a side salad, or have a bigger portion for a light meal (maybe add a roll or slice of good bread).
I love the flavors of this salad. A tangy champagne dressing contrasts perfectly with creamy sweet potato. Raw sunflower seeds add just a touch of nuttiness and dried cranberries add a pop of sweet-tart flavor. It’s just great! If you don’t like kale, this would also be great over baby greens or spinach, although both tend to be more expensive than kale (at least in my area).
I used champagne dressing because its flavor is light an unobtrusive, yet it’s super tangy. I predressed the kale because as the dressing soaks in it will help soften the tough kale. I found that predressing the kale with just a 1/4 cup of dressing was plenty for the entire salad even after adding the other ingredients. Depending on the size of your bunch of kale, you might not even need that much. If you are using other greens, I wouldn’t suggest adding the dressing until just before serving as most greens can’t stand up to dressing the way kale can.
Sweet Potato and Kale Salad
Sweet Potato and Kale Salad
This hearty Sweet Potato and Kale Salad combines bitter kale greens, sweet potatoes, crunchy sesame seeds, and a tangy champagne vinaigrette.
- 1 medium sweet potato (about 1 lb) $1.23
- 1 Tbsp olive oil $0.16
- 1/4 tsp thyme $0.03
- a pinch salt and pepper $0.05
- 1 bunch kale $0.99
- 1/4 cup champagne dressing $0.53
- 1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds $0.23
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries $0.37
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Peel the sweet potato and then cut it into small, 3/4-inch cubes. Toss the cubes with the olive oil, thyme, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Spread the seasoned sweet potato cubes out on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Roast the sweet potato in the preheated oven for about 35 minutes, or until the sweet potato is just barely golden brown on the edges (the exact time will depend on how large or small your sweet potato cubes are).
Meanwhile, tear the kale leaves from their woody stems. Take a handful of leaves at a time and chop them into thin strips (don’t stress about making this perfect, just try to slice it thinly). Place the sliced kale leaves in a colander and rinse well with water. Allow the kale to drain while the sweet potato finishes roasting (or use a salad spinner to dry the kale well).
Place the washed and well drained kale in a large salad bowl. Staring with just two tablespoons, add dressing to the kale and toss to coat. I used 1/4 cup of dressing total, but if you have a smaller bunch, you may want to use less. Make sure to stir well before adding more because it will take a bit to get the dressing to coat all of the curly bits of kale.
After the sweet potato has finished roasting, pile it on top of the dressed kale leaves. Sprinkle the sunflower seeds and cranberries over top as well. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to eat.
Step By Step Photos
Start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees. Peel the sweet potato, cut it into small cubes, and then toss it with olive oil, thyme, salt, and pepper. Spread the seasoned sweet potato out on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper and roast in the oven for about 35 minutes or until it becomes slightly golden on the edges.
Meanwhile, tear the kale leaves off of their woody stems. This is a quick and easy process.
Take a handful of the kale leaves at a time and slice them into thin strips. Place the sliced kale in a colander and rinse well. Allow the water to drain away or use a salad spinner to dry it off. You want to remove as much water as possible so that the dressing will stick.
After about 35 minutes the sweet potato was where I wanted it to be – soft and slightly golden on the edges. If your cubes are slightly larger than mine, it may take longer. Just set your timer for 30 minutes, check them, and then add a few more minutes if needed.
I predressed the kale leaves with this champagne dressing. I only needed 1/4 cup for the entire salad, which is only 1 Tbsp at most per serving. Adding the dressing to the kale helps soften up their tough leaves a bit. You’ll need to stir a lot to make sure that the kale is fully coated, so make sure to stir well before deciding to add more.
Lastly, pile on the rest of the ingredients and enjoy!
Sweet Potato and Kale Salad FTW!