A deliciously sweet and zesty Roasted Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad recipe all dressed up in a zesty lime vinaigrette. Perfect for lunch or as a side dish for dinner tonight.
Because this girl loves a good quinoa salad.
And because sweet potato are officially in season, which means they are tasting extra delicious this time of year. Which means I couldn’t resist bringing the two together!
Fluffy white quinoa dressed with a zesty lime dressing with sweet potato, cranberries, onions mixed with herbs like parsley and cilantro that makes a pretty fantastic fall-inspired salad.
This grainy salad is, as always, gluten free, vegetarian (and vegan-possible!) and super satisfying to those tastebuds.
This Sweet Potato and Quinoa Salad recipe was inspired from this absolutely delicious, so insanely good sweet potato salad I used to be completely obsessed with a few years back. I would visit my local health food shop almost daily to get it when I was living in Ottawa. I was never able to recreate it on my own, something was always missing and it never turned out as good as the store bought one. Fast-forward about 6 years and that salad is still on my mind.
Is that weird?
Anyway… Today, friends! Today I have taken the memories of that sweet potato salad and its key ingredients like sweet potato, cranberry, onion and lime and added delicious (and healthy!) things like quinoa, honey and a pinch of cinnamon, cayenne and cumin to make this fantastic twist on my old favourite.
MORE ABOUT THIS SWEET POTATO QUINOA SALAD RECIPE…
Roasted sweet potatoes are a must here! Because who doesn’t need more roasted veggies? And because roasted sweet potatoes hold their shape better than boiled or steamed potatoes. I cut the sweet potato into itty-bitty bite sized pieces, about 1 cm or so, and I think that works best here. (I tried with larger chunks of sweet potato and with those you don’t get sweet potato in every bite, which I thought was super important.)
The cranberries are a sweet and tangy touch to this salad and I wouldn’t have it any other way. This are my absolute favourite dried cranberries. So good – and good for you too. They are so plump and sweetened with apple juice and they pair so well with the sweet potato… and lemony kale salad too. (PS – This is not a sponsored post. I just really, really love these and I think you will too.)
And that dressing! (Insert a million heart-eye emojis please!) Dressings are my weakness and this one is no exception. Olive oil, lime juice, apple cider vinegar, honey and just a pinch of spice – like cinnamon (!) and cayenne (!) and cumin (!). It’s zesty and a little sweet with a little bit of earthy goodness from the spices. It brings the sweet potatoes and the quinoa and the fresh herbs and the cranberries together in one delicious grainy salad that makes for a great lunch of side dish for dinner tonight!
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- 1 sweet potato, washed, peeled and cut into 1 cm chunks (about 2½ cups sweet potato)
- 1 tablespoon oil (I used avocado oil)
- ½ cup dried quinoa
- 1 cup water or stock
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ½ cup fresh herbs, roughly chopped (I like cilantro and parsley)
- ¼ cup finely chopped onion (I like red or green onion)
- 2-3 tablespoons raw pumpkin seeds
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey (or try maple syrup or agave, if vegan)
- ⅛ teaspoon (each) ground cinnamon, ground cumin, ground cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
- Preheat oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with parchment or a baking mat for easy clean up.
- Transfer the chopped sweet potato to the baking sheet and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of oil. Gently toss the sweet potatoes with your hand to coat.
- Cover the sweet potatoes loosely with a piece of foil and bake for 20 minutes.
- Remove from the foil covering and let potatoes cool slightly before handling.
- Add dried quinoa and cooking liquid of choice to a pot over high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and cover pot with a tight-fitting lid.
- Let the quinoa cook for 10-12 minutes or until fluffy and no water remains.
- Remove from heat and let cool slightly in pot before handling.
- Add oil, lime juice, vinegar, honey (or sweetener of choice), spices and salt to a bowl or mason jar. Whisk or shake until the salad dressing comes together. Adjust sweetness, salt or lime to taste, if needed. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the slightly cooled sweet potatoes, slightly cooked quinoa, cranberries, onions and fresh herbs.
- Pour the dressing over top of the veggies and quinoa. Gentle stir to combine, ensuring everything is evenly coated. Season with additional salt and pepper, if needed.
- Garnish with raw pumpkin seeds on top.
- Serve immediately or store in the fridge for up to 3 days.
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