Kale + Quinoa Salad

Never Been the Salad Type

Let me be 100% honest with you guys, I really don’t like salads. Before I was vegan I never really ate salads, unless it was at a restaurant where you get a salad before your entrée. So ya know, iceberg lettuce, maybe some diced tomatoes & cucumbers, and if you’re lucky some non-stale croutons. That was all I knew when it came to the world of salads. So when I became vegan I was really insistent on NEVER eating salads. They can be so bland, fattening (when you add cheese & ranch dressing), and leaving you even more hungry than before.

So when I started to experiment with salads I was DEDICATED on making a salad that was packed with flavor & nutrition, while also leaving you very full. This Kale + Quinoa salad embodies just that! It’s spicy, sweet, savory, and just down right delicious. I cook this salad religiously, and truly believe I could eat this everyday and be completely content with life.

 

Flavor

Before we get into the steps and ingredients let’s talk about the spices. This is what will take your salad, or really any dish, to the next level. I’m including every seasoning that I use in this dish.

  1. Cumin
  2. Onion
  3. Pepper
  4. Paprika
  5. Chili Powder
  6. Red Pepper flakes
  7. Salt of course (Not pictured)

I season my kale, sweet potatoes, and black beans with every single one of these spices. I highly suggest using these when cooking this dish, but at your preferred amount. I don’t measure seasoning, I just do what feels good. LOL. Usually that means a lot!!! So start off light if it’s your first time using these spices.

 

 

 

 

 

What you need:

1. Canned black beans

2. 1 small- medium sized sweet potato

3. Chopped Kale

4. 1 cup quinoa

5. 1/2 Avocado

          What to do:

    1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees for sweet potatoes. While the oven is preheating start chopping your sweet potatoes in small square pieces, then put on a baking sheet, season (with above seasonings), and toss with olive oil. Cook for 15-20 minutes until crispy!
    2. Place 1 can of black beans in a small pot, turn to medium heat, season, and let them cook until soft. I usually let me beans bubble for a while, my goal is to cook out a lot of the water so they’re more on the thick side. This also allows time for the seasonings to real absorb into the beans.
    3. Take raw quinoa (either white, red, black, or all three) and put in a small or medium sized pot. For every cup of quinoa use two cups of water. Example: 1 cup quinoa add 2 cups of water. Season the raw quinoa while it’s in the water before cooking. Bring to a boil, then as soon as it begins to boil bring to a simmer (low heat), put the lid on, and let cook for about 15-20 minutes.
    4. Lastly, the beautiful kale. It cooks literally in a few minutes so wait until the very end to cook down your kale. I cook my kale on the stove top, drizzled with olive oil, season it up, and then cook on medium-low heat WITH a lid on. This will create steam, which will help to breakdown the kale without making it too soggy. You’re literally going to let it cook for a few minutes. The goal is for your kale to maintain its crunch, while not being completely raw.
    5. COMBINE- Plate your beautiful salad in any order you like! But DON’T forget the avocado at the end. It adds so much deliciousness to this salad, it won’t be the same without it!
    6. ENJOY

 

 

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