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Roasted Sweet Potato, Wild Rice, and Arugula Salad

21 reviews / 5 average

This Roasted Sweet Potato, Wild Rice, and Arugula Salad is filling and fresh with a deliciously simple lemon and olive oil dressing.

Favorite salad.

I say that all the time, and in theory it’s a total oxymoron, but lately salads are my favorite way to get all the food I want to eat (flavor, texture, color, nutrition, give me everything) all on one plate. I know, I’m a food hog, and salads are my vice.

Part of the appeal of salads is my love affair with dressings. Simple, homemade dressings that have lots of flavor. For example, garlic, olive oil, lemon. As pictured above. But more on that in two seconds.

Roasted sweet potatoes on a pan with a wooden spoon.

Let’s reflect on wild rice. Being a born and raised Minnesota girl, I feel this deep pride for that dark, nutty, chewy northern wild rice that can take on any shape and form and be universally delicious. I’ll be the first to admit – chicken wild rice soup has been posted at least 82 times on this here blog (but can it ever be overdone? I mean, really?) and I think way back when the blog started I would do “experimental” things like wild rice flatbread, which I will not link and don’t search it because I cannot confidently vouch for the quality of that recipe. I do remember loving it, but the recipe? I don’t know. I was just a blog baby. Have compassion.

But then things started to get interesting in the wild rice department. I started to branch out and use wild rice in salads. Okay, one, in particular. And so many of us loved it so much together, which sent me to the moon and back and landed me back at my dining room table with yet another wild rice and other yummy stuff salad in front of my face. Because when something works, don’t reinvent the wheel.

Just reinvent it a little bit and add roasted sweet potatoes.

Roasted Sweet Potato, Wild Rice, and Arugula Salad in a bowl.

Today we celebrate the wonderfulness that is wild rice in a salad with fresh, sweet, earthy ingredients. And a lemon dressing that is 200% plate-lickable.

Lemon dressing in a jar.

On a really happy note, Bjork and I are headed to Arizona in a few weeks. No, DAYS. I just realized that as I was typing. Holy wild rice, time has been so sneaky lately.

We are going to visit my sunny grandparents in sunny Arizona and it’s going to be a sunny good time. See the theme there? Other than eating my grandma’s cooking and sitting on the porch with my grandparents smelling the lemon trees in the backyard, I have a singular goal during this trip: to come back very bronzed-up and saturated with Vitamin D. Yes, I really am that deep of a person. I call it: girl on a mission.

In my defense, 50 days of below zero weather? YAH.

Roasted Sweet Potato, Wild Rice, and Arugula Salad in a bowl with wooden spoons.

In all seriousness, I’m trying to be less of a person who sees salads as a pre-pool, pre-swimsuit, pre-post-winter-eating-vacation requirement and more of a person who loves salads because they’re healthy, whole, and make you beautifully naturally glowy and all that. But the true me is probably a little bit of both, so safe to say this is going to be salad week at our house.

aaand to that I say — JACKPOT!

Anyone else traveling somewhere warm? And will you be able to fit both Bjork and me in your suitecase, or just me? Lemme know.

Roasted Sweet Potato, Wild Rice, and Arugula Salad in a bowl with wooden spoons.
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Roasted Sweet Potato, Wild Rice, and Arugula Salad


  • Author: Pinch of Yum
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 46 1x

Description

Roasted Sweet Potato, Wild Rice, and Arugula Salad: served with a simple lemon and olive oil dressing. I licked the plate clean. 300 calories.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 cups cooked wild rice (about 1/2 cup raw)
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced (about 34 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 cups arugula
  • 1/2 cup cashew pieces

For the dressing

  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 2 lemons – more to taste)
  • zest of the lemons
  • 1/3 cup good quality olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons agave nectar
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  1. Cook the wild rice according to package directions. Meanwhile, make the dressing by pureeing all the dressing ingredients in a food processor. When the rice is done, toss it with a little bit of the dressing and refrigerate. Let it rest for a little while so it takes on the flavors of the dressing (I let it chill completely, but you wouldn’t have to do that).
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the sweet potato pieces directly on a baking sheet. Drizzle with the oil and sprinkle with the chili powder, salt, and pepper. Stir directly on the pan to get everything mixed. Roast for 20-25 minutes, stirring every so often to keep from burning. When the sweet potatoes are golden brown on the outside, remove from the oven and set aside.
  3. Toss the arugula, wild rice, sweet potatoes, cashews, and the remaining dressing together. Serve warm or cold. YUM.

Notes

Nutrition is for 6 servings. This salad is a little higher in calories and good fat (thank you, olive oil and cashews) but if you wanted to lighten it you could definitely cut some of the oil, the cashews, or add more arugula to bulk it up. You could also add more lemon juice to your dressing to make it go a little father while still keeping it light.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Category: Dinner
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: sweet potato and wild rice salad, wild rice arugula salad, sweet potatoes and wild rice

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123 Comments

  1. Pinch of Yum Logo

    1. I live in Sunny Florida…and have a spare room…so me thinks that I can fit both of you 😉
    2. I love salads always. Even when it’s not prepping for beach season.
    3. I just started getting into wild rice and it’s SO GOOD.
    4. Roasted sweet potatoes are my life.
    5. You just threw all my favs in one salad. I love you.
    Life complete.
    Pinned

  2. Pinch of Yum Logo

    And it’s another lovely salad bowl from you! I love the use of cooked grains and root veggies in salads – such a nice bridge between winter and summer…if only the winter coat-to-swimsuit transition were so smooth! 😉

  3. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Melanie @ Carmel Moments

    Sweet potato on a salad? I won’t have to think twice about that! Or the the fact that I’ll want a second serving. 🙂

  4. Pinch of Yum Logo

    This salad looks great! I love, love, LOVE arugula! I’ve never had wild rice, but hey, I’m not from Minnesota… It sounds delicious, though 🙂

    I took my mom on a trip to Gran Canaria about a month ago! Boyfriend couldn’t come, because he couldn’t get away from work, but me and my mom had a lot of fun!

    Have a great trip!

  5. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Love the idea of sweet potatoes, cashews and lemon together – this would be a great work lunch! Simple and easy to throw together but lovely and healthy, too. I’ve been living in Greece and Australia for a long time (yes, sort of concurrently … complicated story) and am looking forward to going back to the UK soon but dreading the yucky weather! I’m sure I’ll be seeking some sunshine too this time next year! Hope you have a wonderful time in sunny Arizona with your sunny grandparents!

  6. Pinch of Yum Logo
    AJ

    We are heading on a cruise to the Cayman Islands in two weeks, so we’re eating lots of salads over here!!!! This one looks great so we’ll have to give it a try!!

    Have fun is Sunny AZ! Maybe you can catch a Cubs spring training game while you’re there. =)

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I must say, I am here for the first time, and I like it very much. This salad is just to my taste. Thank you for inspiration 🙂






  8. Pinch of Yum Logo
    joan

    Here is one you would probably love! I don’t think you would want a gallon of it tho. haha It would be easy enough to reduce it. Lentil and wild rice!

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Julie

      I just made the Indian Harvest recipe for dinner tonight (divided by 4) and it was awesome! Highly recommend!

  9. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I have to admit, it’s hard for me to eat salads in the winter, but with warm sweet potatoes and rice? I may just have to make an exception. I am unfortunately not traveling anywhere warm anytime soon, but I hear Ohio may see the 50s this week. Time to break out the tank tops! Be sure to post lots of sunny pictures so we can live vicariously through you…deal?

  10. Pinch of Yum Logo

    This recipe and photo makes me really wish I liked arugula and sweet potatoes more than I do. Maybe I will give it a shot.

  11. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I have had a craving for sweet potatoes recently…doesn’t really make sense, but this salad does! Definitely happening within the next week! Thanks so much for this salad inspiration!
    Abby

  12. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I live in sunny Arizona, and you guys are definitely going to be enjoying the sunshine while you are here and there is a very good chance you will return home all bronzed up! You are coming at just the right time, because Arizona summer is just around the corner and I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. I’m always looking for filling, healthy salads and this one looks great!

  13. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Crystal

    I am also headed to AZ, but not until April! I can hardly wait. Partially because I also need to get out of this frozen state for a while (even though it is beautiful today!), but mainly because I’m visiting my momma. 🙂 Hope you have a great trip!!

  14. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Can I tell you that arugula is my “put an egg on it” thing? Making soup? Put arugula in it! Making a sandwich? Put arugula in it! Love that bitter note it adds to all kinds of things. Also, please add me to the wild rice fan club list! Love it in warm or chilled salads and definitely hearty enough to travel to work for lunch. Lastly, I’ve become a little bit obsessed with roasted butternut squash tossed with olive oil and Penzey’s Southwest Seasoning and then roasted. (Sweet and spicy!) So… pretty much I’m gonna use that in this salad. So… yeah. 🙂