Warm Quinoa, Sweet Potato and Kale Salad
Eating healthy when travelling is not always easy. I want to taste the local food (including when it’s not that healthy!), try a few restaurants and most of the time, cooking is not an option so I can’t completely control what I’m eating.
And you know what? It’s ok! It’s what travelling is for too – discovering new things and stepping out of your routine for a moment. But with our move to Canada and our three-week vacations, well… that “moment” has been pretty long and to be honest, towards the end I was desperately craving healthy food. I was craving a nice home-cooked meal, full of good-for-you ingredients.
In my head, I was describing what would be one of the first thing I would cook when we arrive in Montreal and I finally have a kitchen. It would have quinoa, sweet potato and kale. Can you do healthier than that? I don’t think so. Then it would need a touch of color and freshness: pomegranate and red onions! I finally got to cook this meal a few days ago and it’s as delicious as I hoped it would be. The only thing I added was a simple orange-olive oil dressing. Here’s the improved recipe 🙂 Enjoy!
Cal: 335 - Protein: 9g - Fat: 8.4g - Carbs: 57g - Fiber: 5.5g - Sugar: 13g
WW Old Points: 7 pts - Points+: 9 pts
- 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 medium/large sweet potato, peeled, chopped
- 1 tsp sweet paprika
- 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 3 packed cups kale, stems removed, chopped
- 3 cups cooked quinoa or 1 1/2 cups uncooked quinoa
- 1/4 cup red onion, chopped
- 1 cup fresh pomegranate arils
- 1/4 cup fresh orange juice (from about 1-2 oranges)
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- freshly cracked pepper
- sea salt
- If you don't have cooked quinoa, start with that. Place quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse thoroughly with cool water for at least 2 minutes. Drain. Rinsing quinoa before cooking will remove its natural bitter or soapy taste. Transfer to a saucepan, cover with stock, cover with a lid and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook for 15 minutes on the lowest setting. Turn off the heat and let stand covered for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and set aside. (This will make a little bit more cooked quinoa than what you will need for the salad).
- Heat olive oil in a non-stick skillet. Add sweet potatoes and paprika. Season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste. Stir to cover the sweet potatoes with the spice. Cook on medium heat until brown on the outside and soft on the inside, about 10 minutes. When they are almost ready, stir in maple syrup and finish cooking.
- Add kale and cook until wilted, about 5 minutes.
- Add 3 cups of cooked quinoa, stir and cook until warm.
- Turn off the heat and add onion and pomegranate.
- In a small bowl, whisk together orange juice and olive oil. Season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste. Drizzle over warm salad, toss and serve immediately.
If making this salad ahead, add the dressing at the last minute. Quinoa will soak up all the moisture.