After taking pictures of + making food for long enough, there comes a point in time where you realize that some dishes are just never going to look as good as they taste (great intro, I know). But trust me when I say that this winter detox chopped salad with roasted cauliflower, chickpeas and kale tastes like a friggin’ million bucks… but maybe only looks like five 😂
About 175 pictures later (I don’t know when to stop, I know! It’s the Virgo in me *rolls eyes*), I (finally) realized I just wasn’t going to achieve the look I wanted. The look that would fully articulate through an image how sassy and nuanced this salad is. At which point I would usually just scrap the post and move on to the next project, because so much of what we do here online is based on the aesthetic presentation of food – and if it doesn’t look as good as it tastes, well why even bother?
But then I ate this giant bowl of salad throughout the week, sometimes standing in front of the open refrigerator, fork in hand, having just onnnne more bite before tucking it back in for the night (we had a pretty serious thing going on for those 4 days) and I realized I HAD to share it with you.
It’s the best damn chopped salad of the year. And even though it didn’t look as radiantly perfect as it tasted, I hoped you guys would just trust me anyways 🙂
Cuz trust = everything.
The flavors in this bowl come together like some mushy love story from the movies. It’s seriously that good.
The slight char and sweetness of the roasted cauliflower plays perfectly against the salty crunch of toasted pumpkin seeds. And the fresh dill, green onions and little bits of fennel add bursts of flavor in your mouth along the way, while the massaged kale and garbanzos leave you feeling all virtuous and detox-y – basically making this salad into everything a salad is supposed to be.
Yay kale!! How do you always manage to do that?
And you guys wanna know the best part?! It will keep in your refrigerator for FOUR DAYS! Easy. If it lasts that long, that is.
What really is better than an amazing, healthy + hearty chopped salad than one that you can make, tuck away in your fridge and enjoy all week long!?
If you want the pumpkin seeds to stay nice and crunchy, stir those in right before digging into a bowl of this chopped salad, otherwise if you don’t care too much about crunch-factor you can mix them all in right from the beginning. That’s how I did it and I wasn’t mad about it, but I did have the thought that I would add them in per each serving the next time I made a batch of this.
And if you don’t do the beans thing well you can easily substitute another veggie, some chopped chicken // turkey for extra protein or some quinoa.
So what can I say? Sometimes awesome things look unassuming and you just wouldn’t ever know how awesome they are until you have someone you trust to tell you otherwise 😉
Did you make this recipe? I would love to know how it turned out for you! when you rate my recipes and leave feedback it helps me continue to improve. you can leave me a comment below, or snap a picture and post it to instagram with the tag @nyssaskitchen or hashtag #nyssaskitchen! xoPrint
chopped winter detox salad with roasted cauliflower + chickpeas + kale! Gluten free, vegan and easily made paleo by substituting the chickpeas for some chicken or turkey, this hearty and healthy winter salad is the perfect clean salad to tuck into your fridge and enjoy all week long!
- 1 head of cauliflower
- 1 bunch of green kale, chopped
- 1 small fennel bulb, diced small
- 1/2 cup toasted and salted pumpkin seeds
- 1 15.5 oz can chickpeas (or for a bean free option you could use diced apple, quinoa, or chicken // turkey)
- 4 tbsp avocado oil, divided into 2 tbsp, and 1 and 1
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 6 green onions, thinly sliced
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp + 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp salt, divided + more to taste
- Preheat oven to 475
- Cut cauliflower into small florets, you can include the stem and dice small. Toss with 2 tbsp avocado oil, about 1/2 tsp salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Spread thin on a roasting sheet and roast for 10 minutes.
- Take out and toss, and return to the oven for another 5 minutes, taking out to toss every 5 minutes or so after, until soft and nicely browned. About 20-25 minutes total. If the cauliflower is soft but you haven’t quite achieved the nice brown color we’re looking for you can broil on high for a few minutes to caramelize those edges.
- Set aside to cool.
- While cauliflower is roasting:
- Core and dice fennel, toss in a small bowl with 1 tsp lemon juice, 1/2 tsp avocado oil and a big pinch of salt. This softens the fennel slightly and takes away some of the bite.
- Chop kale into bite sized pieces and wash. Dry and move to a large bowl. Drizzle with 1 tbsp avocado or olive oil, 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar, and 1/2 tsp salt. Massage until leaves turn dark green and soft. Set aside.
- Add roasted cauliflower, kale, fennel, dill, green onions, chickpeas, and toasted pumpkin seeds to a large bowl and toss. Drizzle with 1 more tbsp avocado or olive oil, 1 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tsp maple syrup and salt to taste.
- Dig in!
If you plan on storing this salad in the refrigerator for more than a few hours and you want your pumpkin seeds to stay crunchy, don’t mix them in until you plan to serve.