Let’s talk about Salads. Growing up, I hated them. You mean I’m supposed to eat these…leaves? Ew.
But now I’ve grown to love them more. I’m still not to the point where I’ll go to a nice restaurant and order just a salad for my meal because I love them that much, but I’m getting better. I do, however, love an afternoon salad as a pre-dinner snack.
Because I am an intermittent faster, (Bailey, what the heck does that mean? Click here to see my post on intermittent fasting) I eat breakfast at noon. Anddd, because breakfast food is my favorite food, I tend to eat breakfasts that are on the larger side of things. Now since I only have an 8 hour eating window, that means my eating for the day must be complete by 8 PM, so we usually eat dinner around 6:30 or 7 which leaves a little time left over for dessert (I’m going to be honest, my entire day is planned around eating breakfast and dessert).
BUT. Because I eat such a large breakfast, I generally don’t eat a real lunch in between my breakfast (at noon) and my dinner (at 6:30). I usually nibble on some healthy snacks here and there like persimmons or raw cauliflower, but if I’m feeling like switching things up that day, I’ll have a salad.
This is prime salad time because salads never fill me up completely, or if they do it doesn’t last very long, soooo, when it’s about 4:00 and I need something to tide me over for a couple hours, I break out the tongs and get to tossing.
This recipe is a favorite of mine because there are so many different flavors going on here that mesh together so beautifully, creating a fantastic flavor combination in your mouth. You’ve got your spiced and roasted chickpeas which add a zesty crunch, your chopped kale which has a nice crisp freshness, and then sweet potatoes which are delicious little powerhouses. PLUS, add in the sesame flavor of tahini and ba-bam, you’ve got yourself a gosh-darn salad!
I love adding roasted chickpeas to pretty much everything because, besides contributing to flavor and texture, they have so much nutritional value in such a tiny package! Number 1: chickpeas are full of protein (which you usually don’t have much of in a salad) so that’s a nice little bonus to help boost your body’s tissue health, aka your muscles, hair, skin, nails, bones, and blood (among other things). Number 2: chickpeas are loaded with fiber which helps lower cholesterol and blood sugar levels, as well as aiding in digestion and the excretion process. And number 3: chickpeas have high levels of manganese which helps to decrease inflammation in the body, and since inflammation is the root of all evil, manganese is a pretty good thing to have in your diet.
So next time you’re craving a delicious and nutritious salad, give this one a go! It’s perfect on it’s own as light lunch or as a side salad with dinner, although I will warn you, it might steal the show from whatever you make for your main dish.
Roasted Chickpea & Sweet Potato Kale Salad with Tahini Dressing
- 1 15 oz. can chickpeas, rinsed and dried
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp garlic salt
- ¼ tsp paprika
- Salt and pepper
- 1 Tbsp coconut oil
- 1 bunch kale, chopped
- 1 cup baked sweet potato, cubed
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 1/3 cup tahini
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp EVOO
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
- In a bowl, combine all ingredients for the roasted chickpeas and mix until the chickpeas are evenly coated.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and pour the chickpeas on it. Spread them out until they are in a single layer. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until crispy.
- Meanwhile, make your dressing by combining all the ingredients for the dressing in a bowl and whisking to combine.
- Place your kale in a bowl and toss with the dressing. Top with sweet potatoes and chickpeas. Enjoy!