Roasted Veggie Salad with Lemon Tahini Dressing

Now this, is a salad! Savory, hearty, and topped with a creamy lemon tahini dressing, this beast of a salad will show you how easy it is to build a meal around plants. 

Winter vegetables were the easy choice for this recipe because well, it's still winter, and that means I buy winter vegetables. However, I make some form of this salad, in one way or another, all year round. In November, I'll roast brussels sprouts. In June, I'll roast corn. The list goes on and on, and the possibilities are only limited by your imagination. It's a fun way to cook up whatever random things you pick up at the farmers market, and since the lemon tahini dressing makes everything taste amazing, it doesn't really matter what you decide to add!

 
A simple green salad isn't even in the same ballpark as this delicious winter wonderland, packed with roasted vegetables, quinoa, and a creamy lemon tahini sauce. It's a hearty and savory salad that easily rotates with the seasons, and can be customized to work with whatever you have on hand. Stick to the recipe or mix and match the produce for a plant based meal that will change the way you look at salad forever. 

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Roasted Veggie Salad with Lemon Tahini Dressing

Servings: 2

Ingredients

Roasted Veggie Salad

1 cup quinoa, rinsed

1-2 small bunches carrots (about 3 cups diced)

2 bunches golden and/or red beets (~6 large beets)

1-2 bunches small radishes, turnips, or rutabagas (~1 1/2 cups halved or diced)

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium avocado, peeled and sliced

1-2 cups fresh arugula

1/3-1/2 cup roasted salted pumpkin seeds

Black sesame seeds (optional)

Serve with lemon wedges

Lemon Tahini Dressing

1/2 cup tahini

4-5 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

Juice of 1 lemon (about 1/4 cup)

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 450ยบ. Place rinsed quinoa and 2 cups water in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and let cook until all water has been absorbed, about 15 minutes. Let cool and set aside until ready to use.

  2. Cut the veggies into bite size pieces. It doesn't matter if you dice, halve, or julienne cut your vegetables, just make sure they're roughly the same size. Place in a large bowl and toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Place on a parchment or foil lined baking sheet and cook until lightly charred and tender, about 20-40 minutes, tossing occasionally. Let cool to room temperature before serving.

  3. To prepare the sauce, combine the tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl and stir until combined. Set aside until ready to use.

  4. Evenly distribute quinoa to bowls or plates, then add roasted vegetables, arugula, and avocado. Top with Lemon Tahini dressing, roasted pumpkin seeds, and black sesame seeds if using. Serve at room temperature.

Tips:

  • Confession: I don't normally roast everything separate and portion it out all pretty, like in the photos. Normally, I just cut everything up and mix it all together in the same bowl. It's ;ess pretty, but when I'm not trying to impress anyone, i'm all about efficiency. However, red beets will make your other veggies pink if mixed in with everything, so you may want to keep them separate. 

  • Radishes and turnips can be a little strongly flavored for some people, but I really like them. They're easy to prepare, very nutritious, and super cheap! With a little bit of the lemon tahini dressing, you won't mind them one bit. 

  • The dressing can be made ahead.

Ben Mastracco