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Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Candied Walnuts

10 reviews / 4.8 average

Who-ho-ho-hoa. What a weekend!

Real live kitchen appliances, more sparkly snowflakes, an annual friend group viewing of Christmas with the Kranks, roasted sweet potato salads with candied walnuts and creamy almond butter dressing, and everything else good in the world – I swear – it all just found me between Friday evening and Monday morning.

This salad is a tossed texture-pile of sweet and salty bright orange sweet potatoes, crunchy and strong and vibrant kale, irresistibly crispity candied walnuts, and the creamiest and most savory-wonderful almond butter dressing. And I love love looove it.

Please know this –> I have a thing about kale salads which is that I don’t eat them unless the kale pieces are chopped extremely small. Like, shredded, almost. Or minced. Almost like they’re undetectable to my mouth while singing happy green songs to my eyes. As a result, this choppy-textured salad falls somewhere between the creamy-soft potato salad and the crunchy-light leafy salad and I’m veryveryvery okay with it.

It’s roasty and tender, crispy and green, salty-sweet, and comforting. But wait though, it’s a salad. WHAT IS GOING ON.

Maybe you should look at our new countertops for a second while I collect myself.

Kitchen Update (1 MIN 45 SEC):

Yeah, countertops! And if you follow on Facebook you might have already seen that we have our appliances in place too (squeee!) and we’ll have a video of that soon. And then the backsplash, and then the appliance panels, and then me cooking delicious things in the kitchen.

Can I just say one comment in regards to having a kitchen?

H-A-P-P-Y. That is all.

Kale and sweet potatoes.
This Roasted Sweet Potato Salad has a handful of shredded kale, candied walnuts, and the best creamy almond dressing. Yum! | pinchofyum.com

I actually made this salad during one of my many trips back to my parents’ house when the kitchen was being remodeled, so I’ll just give you a second to give my parents a virtual high five through the screen. BOOM. Nailed it.

As much as I usually like to be really fresh and real-time on the blog, obviously this one isn’t real time, as in I didn’t make this in my kitchen yet. And thanks for asking, but NO I didn’t take care of the 900 inches of remodeling dust on all our furniture either or organize my eighty zillion boxes of miscellaneous kitchen gadgets hiding in every corner of the basement — one thing at a time, okay? Somehow it all feels like so much work.

When do I get to snap my fingers and have everything clean and orderly with Bjork feeding me melty sea-salty chocolate chip cookies as I stir the chili over the new range? Yeah that.

Roasted Sweet Potato Salad in a clear bowl.

This would be a great Thanksgiving salad because it has that salad-but-not-a-salad feel that errryone always loves. It also makes for a great take-to-work lunch because it’s not a super leafy salad meaning it doesn’t really matter if it sits with the dressing for a day or two. In fact, in my experience, more days in the fridge almost always equals more and better flavor. I’m not saying, I’m just saying.

Just one second ago as I was writing that I had a day dream where I ate candied walnuts for a few weeks till real Thanksgiving.

Don’t even try to stop me.

Sweet Potato Salad with dressing drizzle.
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Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with dressing poured on.

Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Candied Walnuts


  • Author: Pinch of Yum
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x

Description

This Roasted Sweet Potato Salad has a handful of shredded kale, candied walnuts, and the best creamy almond dressing. Yum!


Ingredients

Scale

For the salad:

  • 2 sweet potatoes, diced
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon gravy herbs (rosemary, sage, thyme, nutmeg, salt, pepper)
  • salt to taste
  • 4 cups chopped kale
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon butter (replace with coconut oil if vegan)
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar

For the dressing:

  • 3 tablespoons almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon stoneground mustard
  • ½ tablespoon raw honey or maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon salt, more to taste
  • ½ teaspoon minced garlic

Instructions

  1. Sweet Potatoes: Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Toss the sweet potatoes with the oil and gravy herbs. Spread on a greased baking sheet. Roast for 20 minutes – check the potatoes for doneness, gently stir, and return to oven. Repeat this process every five minutes for about 15 more minutes (total roasting time should be anywhere from 30-45 minutes). Turn up the heat to 475 and roast for a final 5-10 minutes to really brown them nice and pretty. When they’re done, they should be visibly browned and relatively “dry” to the touch so that once you loosen them you can shake the pan and they slide back and forth easily.
  2. Kale: Cut the kale into very small bite-sized pieces, or shred it into tiny bits (like pictured). Set aside.
  3. Walnuts: Melt the butter in a medium saucepan and add the walnuts and sugar. Stir continuously over moderate heat for about 5 minutes. When the sugar has dissolved and the mixture has coated the walnuts, transfer to foil or wax paper to separate and cool.
  4. Dressing: Pulse all ingredients together in a food processor. Taste and adjust.
  5. Assembly: Toss all the ingredients together just before serving OR arrange the nuts, sweet potatoes, and any other toppings you want over the top of the kale in pretty colorful rows. Drizzle with dressing and enjoy.
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: roasted sweet potato salad, thanksgiving salad, candied walnuts

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94 Comments

  1. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Ramona @ The Merchant Baker

    I love sweet potatoes with candied pecans on top….what a wonderful (and lighter) twist on those great flavors! And I think this is one of those recipes that I would make even after the holiday…yes, most definitely!

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      I like sweet potatoes the exact same way. Those candied pecans get me every time. And sweet potatoes are a carbohydrate powerhouse, it’s an excellent source of lycopene which boosts your mood even on the grayest of days. Too bad I cut the end of my finger off with a mandolin making sweet potato fries and spent the day in the ER getting it put back on! Those are sharp.

      And kale, unlike you Lindsay, I force feed myself Kale. It’s just freakishly amazing for ya. One cup only 36 calories. You can’t go wrong.

  2. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Welcome back to the land of kitchens and happiness and awesome!!
    Which also describes this salad. Well, minus the kitchen part…because I don’t like kitchens in my salad.
    BUT I do love creamy roasty sweet taters, tiny little bits of kale (I am the same) and CANDIED WALNUTS. YES. PUHLEASE.
    Pinned!

  3. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Ramona @ The Merchant Baker

    I forgot to mention…I LOVE my quartz countertops! Easy to maintain, easy to clean…years later, they look as good as they did when they were installed. I think you’ll love yours too…especially since you chose white…I remember being in our kitchen designer’s studio and a client was on the phone complaining because an orange juice spill stained her beautiful white marble. I don’t think that’s an issue with quartz. With all of your cooking, you can’t be worried about that kind of stuff…can’t wait to see the finished kitchen!

  4. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Madeline

    Lindsay, where did you get your counter tops and what is the color/design? We’re doing a remodel (so excited!!!) and I love what you chose so much I think we might just get the same thing. 🙂

    Also, what is the color/brand of your wall paint? It compliments the color of the counters so nicely!

    I’m so excited for you all on the completion of the remodel! So much fun!

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      Hey Madeline! The countertop material is a brand called Caesarstone and we picked the “London Grey” color. I have a friend who went with Frosty Carrina, which is more of a warm, cream tone, and she loves it. 🙂

  5. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Congrats on the completion of the remodel! I can only imagine how excited and relieved you are! I am the SAME way about kale….super super super tiny pieces, please! Love the candied walnuts and potatoes, too, of course 😉

  6. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Ooooh that’s so exciting! Can’t wait to see the new kitchen in action (and more VIDEOS!)! The salad looks amazing too – never thought of using sweet potatoes this way but it looks so good!

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo

    You always have such wonderful salad dressings! Will make this for lunch tomorrow. Yum! Congrats on the gorgeous kitchen. Look forward to seeing more videos 🙂

  8. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Alle

    Salad is printed and ready to buy items. Whats really on my mind – you mentioned sea-salty chocolate chip cookies (maybe with some caramel?). Looking forward to that post. Good foreshadowing.

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      COOKIES! I actually made some this weekend from my friend Ashley’s cookie mix – it’s on her site Not Without Salt. Really fun for gifting, too!

  9. Pinch of Yum Logo

    So happy to see that your kitchen remodeling is getting to the exciting end. We built 3 homes in the past 15 years and very familiar with the process and what you are going through. The guys took a little longer than it should take to remodel a single kitchen. Oh, well! The exciting moment is coming soon….. new kitchen!!!! Salad looks amazing! 🙂






  10. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Forget the fact that this looks crazy delicious… but that photo with the dressing being poured on… stop it. I. CAN’T. EVEN. Amazing job as always! Also, Bjork’s Foodblogger pro emails from the past two weekends might as well have been completely for me, it’s creepy. And as always, put a smile on my face. You guys are the best 🙂






  11. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Oh I am definitely making this! I have been craving a goo hearty salad and here it is. I made a roasted butternut squash salad once and it is one of my favorites so I know I’ll enjoy this too.

  12. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Hip! Hip! Hooooray for your countertops. They look awesome. Oh, I will be making this salad ASAP because I am addicted to roasted sweet potatoes and that dressing is screaming my name.