Autumn Salad with a Vegan Caesar Twist

autumn salad

I love making hearty, colorful, nutrient dense salads for dinner. Some salads consist of a variety of fresh, raw vegetables. For this filling-yet light autumn salad, I used leftover oven roasted yams. But leftovers or not, you can roast up some yams, beets, rutabagas, and put together a delicious, plant-based entree salad in less than 30 minutes. The ingredients in this salad give it a Caesar-like nuance, but a little simpler with lemon, garlic, and plant-based fats being the focus. The brown rice cakes provide a crunchy gluten free substitute for croutons. Have some fun and feel free to improvise as you go.

caesar-style autumn salad with roasted yams and pomegranate seeds

1 small-medium yam, cut into thumb-sized cubes
1 tbsp. avocado oil
1 heart of romaine lettuce
1/2 bunch of tuscan kale
1 lemon, juiced
3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp. liquid aminos or coconut aminos
1 small shallot, chopped (about 1 tbsp.)
1 garlic clove, chopped
2 tbsp. nutritional yeast
1 tbsp. hulled hempseed
2 tbsp. raw almond meal or almond flour
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. fresh cracked black pepper
1 brown rice cake made from 100% brown rice
4 tbsp. raw pepitas
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds (about 1 pomegranate, seeded)

autumn salad

Preheat oven to 400° F. Toss the yams in 1 tbsp. of avocado oil and roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes or until tender. You can also use pre-roasted, leftover yams or any other root vegetable for variety and convenience.

While the yams are roasting, prepare your salad. Clean and cut up the lettuce as you would for a Caesar salad. De-stem the kale, and julienne into thin strips. Refrigerate the lettuce and kale while you prepare the dressing

In a small bowl, combine the lemon juice, 3 tbsp. olive oil, liquid aminos, garlic, and shallots. Mix with a fork or small whisk until blended.

To complete the salad, combine the lettuce and dressing. Add in the nutritional yeast, hulled hempseed, almond meal, salt, and pepper. Crumble the rice cake into the salad into pieces about the size of croutons. Add about 3 tbsp. of the pepitas. Blend it all together, taste for seasoning adjustment, and divide onto 2 entree or 4 side plates. Sprinkle the remaining pepitas and pomegranate seeds over the top. Serve immediately.

Check out other hearty, healthy salad recipes here!

autumn salad

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