Roasted Carrot Salad with Quinoa, Chickpeas + Everyday Dressing

Roasted carrot salad with quinoa, chickpeas and almonds. Dressed in a creamy vegan everyday dressing loaded with tahini, dijon and nutritional yeast.

“Cooking, I found, gives us the opportunity, so rare in modern life, to work directly in our own support, and in the support of the people we feed. If this is not “making a living,” I don’t know what is. In the calculus of economics, doing so may not always be the most efficient use of an amateur cook’s time, but in the calculus of human emotion, it is beautiful even so. For is there any practice less selfish, any labor less alienated, any time less wasted, than preparing something delicious and nourishing for people you love?”

– Micheal Pollan, Cooked

Roasted carrot salad with quinoa, chickpeas and almonds. Dressed in a creamy vegan everyday dressing loaded with tahini, dijon and nutritional yeast.Roasted carrot salad with quinoa, chickpeas and almonds. Dressed in a creamy vegan everyday dressing loaded with tahini, dijon and nutritional yeast.


ROASTED CARROT SALAD WITH QUINOA, CHICKPEAS + EVERYDAY TAHINI DRESSING

It is so often heard that meal prep is the key to quick and healthy meals at home. But what does this look like exactly? For me, it looks like this. Below are the ingredients and quantities that I will cook at the beginning of the week. I keep them stored in containers in the fridge for easy lunches.

I cook the quinoa like pasta, I know this may be sacrilege to some, but it saves a few minutes and most of the time I don’t measure out my grains either so it saves a few dishes as well. If you’re the precise type of cook, the water to quinoa ratio is 2:1, bring to a boil, simmer for 15 minutes covered, remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork.

The dressing made its first appearance on the blog last summer. I’ve updated it here with some apple cider vinegar and tamari, but otherwise it’s the same recipe. Be warned that it will thicken up quite a bit in the fridge (as the olive oil solidifies) so you can always take it out to bring to room temperature as you are beginning to make lunch. 

The toasted almonds my favorite crunch of the moment, but toasted sesame seeds or chopped raw almonds are equally delicious.

I always have some sort of greens in the fridge. Sprouts are easy to come by in the winter time, and soon the farmer’s markets will be bursting with spring leaves. 

So, Meal prep. Here we go. A batch of cooked grains. Some vegetables ready to go. A few fun toppings and a good dressing. It is, indeed, as easy as that.

Feeds a very large crowd or makes a few lunches for you and yours. Vegan + Gluten Free.

Ingredients

Salad

800g – 1kg carrots (they shrink a lot in the oven)
Olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 + 1/4 cup quinoa
1 + 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas (1 small can)
1/3 cup slivered almonds
Mixed baby greens
Sunflower seeds sprouts or micro greens of choice

Dressing

1/4 cup tahini
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
2 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 + 1/2  tablespoon tamari
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
1/3 cup olive oil or your preferred neutral oil
1/2 cup water

Instructions

Preheat oven to 400 F / 200 C

Peel the carrots and slice into diagonal rounds. The thicker you cut the longer they will take in the oven, I aim for a thickness of about half an inch. Place the carrots on a sheet pan covered in parchment and drizzle over just enough olive oil to coat generously and season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine and roast in the oven until tender, flipping and rotating the pan after 15 minutes. Check for done-ness at 25 minutes, but they may take up to 35 minutes.

While the carrots are roasting – cook the quinoa. Rinse the quinoa under cold water in a metal sieve for about 30 secs. Bring a medium pot full of lightly salted water to a boil, add rinsed quinoa and reduce to a medium boil. Cook quinoa for 15 minutes, then strain. Like pasta. Easy.

Make the dressing. Add all ingredients except oil and water to a blend and being blending. Drizzle in oil until emulsified and add water until desired consistency. The dressing will thicken up quite a bit in the fridge. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

Toast almonds in a dry skillet until light brown and fragrant, stirring often to prevent burning. Set aside

Now you have a batch of cooked quinoa. A bunch of roasted carrots. An open can of chickpeas. Some good toppings (toasted almonds, sprouts, even some sesame seeds would be nice) and a decent dressing. Meal prep done. Add fresh greens. Assemble as you wish. Enjoy when you want.


Let me in on your kitchen creations – tag your photos #happyheartedkitchen and share the love!

10 Comments

  • Reply
    Sarah | Well and Full
    March 30, 2017 at 12:09 pm

    Hmm I’ve never cooked quinoa like pasta, but that sounds interesting!! Usually I just stick it in my rice cooker ;) I was just over at Oh Ladycakes, and Ashlae was talking about meal prep too. I need to be better about that! I’m a big impulse snacker and that can get expensive… so I appreciate reading your tips :)

    • Reply
      Jodi
      March 30, 2017 at 10:39 pm

      Ah a rice cooker would be the dream! It was actually when I was living in France when someone told me to cook rice like pasta, I thought the idea was so easy (genius) that I’ve been cooking most of my grains like that ever since. I saw Ashlea’s post too, and I loved it. Hope you’re well, Sarah x

  • Reply
    Jessie Snyder
    March 30, 2017 at 2:38 pm

    So simple and beautiful, I love this Jodi. Hope you are doing so well and loving life friend!

    • Reply
      Jodi
      March 30, 2017 at 10:40 pm

      Thanks, Jessie! I am indeed. Same to you! xx

  • Reply
    Mandy
    March 30, 2017 at 7:54 pm

    This was amazing the dressing is fantastic.
    This will be a regular rotation in my kitchen w many variations depending on what veggies I have on hand.
    Thank you!

    • Reply
      Jodi
      March 30, 2017 at 10:41 pm

      That’s great news, Mandy! Thank you for letting me know – I really appreciate it! So glad you enjoyed it x

  • Reply
    Erin Potter
    March 30, 2017 at 9:25 pm

    This looks so lovely and simple! Thanks Jodi!

    • Reply
      Jodi
      March 31, 2017 at 9:17 am

      Thanks Erin! Hope spring has arrived in the mountains. Thinking of you all x

  • Reply
    kirsten miller
    April 14, 2017 at 11:35 am

    Hi Jodi, I emailed with you a while ago because my eldest son is allergic to nuts and I was picking your brain for some substitutes. But I’ve never left a comment. I love your writing voice. I love your style of cooking and you’ve majorly impacted our lunches. I’ve been making healthy lunches for my husband and I during the week and I love, love, love the combination of greens, grains, and legumes. It’s brilliant balanced, soul-satisfying, but not heavy. Thank you!!!!

    • Reply
      Jodi
      April 15, 2017 at 9:32 am

      Hi Kristen! It’s so nice to hear from you again! Hope you and your family are doing well. I’m so glad that you’ve found something that everyone can eat and enjoy and feels satisfied – it’s not always easy! Thank you so much for taking the time to say hi, it really makes my day. Wishing a happy weekend to you + yours x

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