Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Vegan Lentil and Black Rice Chopped Salad

Yum. I think a lot of vegans get asked if all we eat is salads. Well...um...it's not ALL I eat!! 

The fact is that when you want a healthy vegan lunch, sometimes the simplest thing to do is chop up whatever's in the fridge, toss it with a quick homemade dressing, and have at it. But this is no ordinary garden salad!

I spend an inordinate amount of time scouring food blogs every day, and once in awhile I'll see something that looks so amazing, I have to make it RIGHT NOW. Today, it was this salad on Oh She Glows (one of the best healthy vegan food blogs out there!). 

I had a bunch of veggies in the fridge, and I had just made a huge batch of lentils and black rice to toss into various salads, soups, and what-have-yous over the course of the week, so I went ahead and made myself quite the hearty vegan salad for lunch! This is more of a guideline than a recipe, as you can basically use whatever greens and veggies you have on hand. 

The dressing was as easy to make as the salad - I just poured the ingredients into a jar and shook until the dressing was nice and creamy.
This vegan salad dressing is flavorful and rich enough to stand up to all of the veggies. According to myfitnesspal's recipe calculator this salad (with 1.5 T dressing) clocks in at 434 calories, with 13.2 grams of healthy fat, 14.0 grams of fiber, 17.7 grams of protein, and a whopping 321% of Vitamin A and 256% Vitamin C. 

Oh, and I made my first animated gif!

Vegan Lentil and Black Rice Chopped Salad
Salad and dressing adapted from Oh She Glows
(serves 1 as main course, 2 as a side)

1 cup romaine lettuce
1 cup baby spinach or baby kale
1/3 cup cooked green lentils
1/3 cup cooked black rice
1/2 medium tomato
1/3 cup cucumber
4 baby carrots, julienned
1 small purple bell pepper
2 Tbsp cilantro or herb of choice
1 heaping Tbsp pepitas or other seed
1-2 Tbsp Tahini-Almond Butter dressing (recipe below)

1. Chop all veggies.
2. Create salad by layering greens, then lentils and rice, then chopped veggies. Sprinkle with cilantro and pepitas, then drizzle with dressing of your choice.

Tahini-Almond Butter Vegan Salad Dressing


1 clove garlic, grated
1 tsp fresh grated ginger
3 T tahini
2 T almond butter
1 T lemon juice
1-2 T water
1 T soy sauce
1 tsp maple syrup
1 tsp sesame oil

1. Combine ingredients in a small jar. Cover and shake til combined. Taste and adjust seasoning. Add more water if too thick. 

Last but not least, here is a totally awkward picture where I try to demonstrate the size of my gigantic farmer's market cucumber (this is after eating 1/3 of it already!):

Stay tuned for more yummy vegan eats! And, to see what I am eating on a daily basis, take a look at my Instagram!

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