This Autumn Kale Sweet Potato and Bean Salad has it all; roasted sweet potatoes, sauteed onion and portobellos, crispy kale, and hearty black beans all topped with shaved parmesan, raisins, and pepitas for a nourishing fall salad bursting with flavor.
Easily customizable, this autumn salad eats like a meal. The hardest thing you’ll face with this salad will be whether to eat it for lunch or dinner.
Table of Contents
- Why You’ll Love This Recipe For Autumn Salad
- Ingredients To Make This Sweet Potato and Kale Fall Salad
- How To Make This Autumn Kale Salad
- Tips and Variations
- Make Ahead and Storage
- Looking for more salads for autumn?
- Autumn Kale Sweet Potato Bean Salad Recipe
Autumn salad recipes don’t get much better than this! Loaded with almost everything but the kitchen sink, this salad has tons of flavor, texture and is guaranteed to keep you full for hours.
There’s nothing better than balancing the sweetness of roasted sweet potatoes with the savory flavor of mushrooms and onions. Place them both on a bed of kale along with some beans, raisins, pepitas and shaved mozzarella and it packs a punch.
How to choose the right kale
Believe it or not there are 7 different types of kale. This article from Greatist does a good job of explaining them all and how best to use them. Whichever you choose to use, make sure to wash and dry the leaves well and massage them with the olive oil. Massaging the leaves with oil helps soften them as they can be a touch tough and chewy.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe For Autumn Salad
Hearty: This salad is chock full of nourishing and hearty ingredients that will keep your hunger at bay for hours.
Flavorful: You won’t find a salad bursting with more flavor than this one.
Customizable: You can easily change up the ingredients in this salad based on what you have on hand without compromising on the taste.
Ingredients To Make This Sweet Potato and Kale Fall Salad
- Kale – One whole bunch of kale is used in this salad. Any type of kale works.
- Cilantro – Freshly chopped cilantro adds loads of flavor but you can also use parsley if you aren’t keen on cilantro.
- Sweet potato – A small sweet potato, cut into wedges, makes this salad a little more hearty and adds natural sweetness.
- Black beans – Canned, rinsed and drained black beans add some protein.
- Portobello mushroom – Portobello mushrooms add meatiness to this salad so it’s even more filling.
- Onion – Half an onion, cut into wedges.
- Parmesan cheese – Shaved parmesan cheese adds saltiness to the salad.
- Raisins – Raisins sweeten up this fall salad.
- Pepitas – Pepitas, or sunflower seeds, add some crunch.
- Paprika – Paprika adds a touch of flavor.
- Salt and pepper – Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Butter – Salted or unsalted butter both work. If you use salted, adjust the amount of salt you add at the end.
Sundried Tomato Dressing
- Olive oil – Extra virgin olive oil is great for salads but any kind works.
- Lemon – Fresh lemon juice adds some tartness to the dressing.
- Sun dried tomato preserved in oil – Sundried tomatoes add a deep savory flavor.
- Balsamic vinegar – Balsamic vinegar balances out the flavor.
- Salt and pepper – Add to taste.
How To Make This Autumn Kale Salad
- Step 1: Roast the sweet potato by cutting it into wedges, seasoning it with olive oil, paprika, salt and pepper and roasting it at 400F. When it’s finished roasting, set it aside to cool.
- Step 2: While the sweet potatoes roast, prepare the kale. Remove the stems, cut into bite size pieces, and then place in a bowl and massage with the olive oil for a few minutes.
- Step 3: Melt butter in a skillet and then pan fry the mushroom and onion until they are golden brown.
- Step 4: Prepare the dressing by whisking the olive oil, sun dried tomato, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar and then season with salt and pepper.
- Step 5: Pull together the salad by tossing the kale with the cilantro then topping with the beans, sweet potatoes, mushrooms and onion. Add in the pepitas, raisins and shaved parmesan cheese.
- Step 6: Toss the salad with the sun-dried tomato dressing and serve.
Tips and Variations
- Change up the kale: If you can’t find any kale use a hearty leafy green like spinach or Swiss chard.
- Switch the cheese: Instead of parmesan cheese try crumbled feta or goat cheese.
- Substitute the beans: Use chickpeas, kidney beans or whatever beans you have on hand to add protein to this salad.
- Modify the crunch: Sunflower seeds or pecans would make a great substitute for the pepitas.
- Change the sweet potato: Instead of sweet potato roast your favorite squash.
Yes, kale is great in salads. Just make sure to chop it into bite-sized pieces and massage it well so it softens.
If you don’t have any kale feel free to substitute a different type of leafy green.
Absolutely! Use whatever beans you like. If you are using canned beans, rinse and drain them well.
Kale is really hearty so it will soften but it most likely won’t get too soggy.
Make Ahead and Storage
This autumn salad recipe has quite a few steps but you can easily tackle a few of them in advance of when you want to serve the salad. You can prepare the salad dressing, roast the potatoes, and saute the mushrooms and onions a day or two in advance. Combining the salad the day before or a few hours before you want to serve it is fine as well. The sweet potato may soften slightly but it will still taste great.
Leftovers can be stored in the fridge in an airtight container for 2-3 days. It is best to store undressed salad as it will stay crisper but if the leftovers are already dressing the salad will still taste fine it may just not have the same amount of crispness it did when it was freshly dressed.
Looking for more salads for autumn?
- Mediterranean Couscous Salad
- Quinoa Beet and Arugula Salad
- Roasted Vegetable Salad with Ginger Rosemary Dressing
- Maple Roasted Brussel Sprouts and Apple Salad
Blend the sundried tomato: To make portioning and using the sundried tomato in oil a bit easier, empty the jar into the food processor and process until you get a paste. Store in the fridge and use wherever sundried tomatoes are called for.
Autumn Kale Sweet Potato Bean Salad
- 1 bunch kale
- 1 cup fresh cilantro chopped
- 2 small sweet potato cut into wedges
- 1 15oz can black beans rinsed
- 1 portobello mushroom
- 1/2 onion cut into wedges
- 3 tbsp shaved parmesan cheese
- 3 tbsp raisins
- 3 tbsp pepitas
- 1 tsp paprika
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp butter
Sun Dried Tomato Dressing
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1 lemon juiced
- 1 tbsp sun dried tomato preserved in oil
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- salt and pepper to taste
- Cut sweet potato into wedges. Season with 2 tbsp olive oil, paprika and salt and pepper. Transfer to a baking sheet and roast at 400F degrees for 30 minutes. When done set aside and allow it to cool off
- Meanwhile prepare the kale by removing steams. Cut into bite size pieces. Transfer to a bowl, add 2 tbsp olive oil and massage for a couple of minutes to soften.
- Melt butter in a skillet then pan fry the mushroom and onion on both sides until golden brown (about 6-8 minutes)
- Make the sun dried tomato dressing by adding remaining olive oil to a small bowl, whisk in sun dried tomato preserved in oil, juice from lemon, balsamic vinegar and season with salt and pepper.
- When ready to make the salad toss in kale and cilantro. Top with rinsed beans, roasted sweet potatoes wedges and sautéed mushrooms and onion. Add pepitas, raisins and shaved parmesan cheese.
- Season salad with the sun-dried tomato dressing and serve.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.