Happy Monday! Ready to get back into the week?!! Yikes! I’m thinking about lunch today. Not the most earth shattering topic, but important nonetheless. I’ve packed a heck of a lot of lunches over the course of my life, ranging from train-shaped cheese sandwiches (that’s what you do for your firstborn) to mac and cheese in a thermos! But today, we’re not going to focus on lunch for the kiddies—today it’s all about us. Finally! Read on and see why this simple Sweet Potato Salad is going to make that midday meal almost as much fun as opening up your lunchbox and seeing that your mom packed you Yodels!!
Lunches are tricky, right? If you work outside of your house, you’ve either got to pack something to go or spend money and time you don’t really have on buying something that’s probably not exactly what you want either. If you work from home, you either stand and graze in front of the fridge or are tempted to eat stuff you probably shouldn’t (not that I would know from experience or anything!). Enter this perfect little gem of a salad. It’s healthy, easy to make and has tons of eye appeal too. Oh, and most importantly, it’s seriously delish!
What I love to do with this is make a double batch so that we can enjoy it at home and then have plenty of leftovers to pack up for healthy lunches for the next few days. The combo of sweet potatoes, carrots, red onion, edameme and crunchy pepitas provides tons of variety in both the flavor and texture department. And it’s all lightly coated in a lemon-mustard vinaigrette that adds just the right note of tanginess!
Seriously, every bite is just YUM! And so good for you too!
Mix up a batch or two today and think of this as a little favor to yourself. Maybe you can’t have that Yodel but how about a handful of dark chocolate chips? What? We need all the anti-oxidants we can get!! Happy lunching!
Sweet Potato Salad
Makes 4 generous servings
This doubles very well!
Prep Time for sweet potatoes: 10 minutes to prepare, 30 minutes to roast; Prep Time for salad: 15 minutes
4 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-sized cubes
1/4 cup, plus 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 large carrots, peeled and cut into bite-sized chunks
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced (or sub in scallions)
Generous 1/2 cup thawed and shelled frozen edamame
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 scant tablespoon Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper to taste
Handful of fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon minced chives (I’ve made this without and it’s great too, don’t stress if you can’t find them)
Toasted pumpkin seeds or pepitas (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
2. Place cut up sweet potatoes on one or two large rimmed baking sheets. Drizzle with the 3 tablespoons oil and toss to coat. Spread in a single layer. Definitely use 2 sheets if you are doubling the recipe because you want them to have space between them as they cook or they will steam instead of roasting. Roast for 30 minutes, stirring them once or twice during the process, until they are tender and starting to get browned. Remove and set aside to cool.
3. While potatoes are cooking, place the carrots, red onion and edamame in a large bowl and mix together.
4. In a separate small bowl, whisk the 1/4 cup oil, lemon juice and mustard together.
5. To toast pumpkin seeds, heat in a small heavy weight frying pan over medium-high heat, shaking the pan all the time so that they do not burn, but just get browned. Transfer right away to a bowl so that they stop cooking.
5. When the potatoes have cooled a bit, add them to the vegetable mixture and drizzle the vinaigrette on and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper to taste and stir in the parsley and chives if using. You can either serve this right away or cover and chill it for a few days. Sprinkle with the pepitas if using right before serving if you want them to be very crunchy (although I add them to the salad before I chill it and they are great that way too.)
Note: Recipe adapted from At Home With Nathalie by Nathalie Morales. I tinkered with proportions here and subbed in carrots for the celery. This is the kind of salad you can totally make your own.