This Simple Winter Salad with Apple and Pomegranate is comforting and hearty and perfect for lunch or a light dinner.
It’s the day after Christmas. I woke in the middle of a dream which left my head spinning. Mouth dry, limbs numb, trying to compose myself. I could sleep for another 2 days straight. Exhausted from festivities and feeling somewhat relieved but also sad. There is such buildup to Christmas that I often feel inadequate in keeping up with its demands so in some respect I’m glad it’s over. But with its ending comes the end of my children’s euphoric anticipation.
Growing up we did Christmas differently. There was no month-long buildup from Thanksgiving to the actual day. There was a tree at some point and presents to be had on Christmas morning. Trees are often decorated on the 24th in a ceremonious fashion and the celebration also includes the day after Christmas. Whether it was customary everywhere or just with my family and friends, the day after was also a big deal. It was mostly a day of feasting. A large meal that spanned for hours and took up the majority of the day. It was a nice transition.
So the 26th. I try to compose myself, reluctantly kicking off the covers somewhat tired but feeling a strong need to get back in the kitchen and cooking. Taking even a few days off makes me feel a tad antsy. Whenever I’m faced with the end of something, such as the Christmas season, I feel the need to quickly shift focus. Perhaps it’s to lessen the feeling of sadness I inevitably experience every time the excitement vanishes.
A remedy for this sadness is making food. It’s no surprise that cooking brings me joy. It’s a reliable source of contentment. I’m itching to get back to some sort of routine. I find it grounding. Whether an escape or not, it doesn’t much matter. It makes me pretty damn happy. And so does the salad I had planned for the day. I have previously mentioned the absurd pleasure that cooking with vegetables brings me. I find peeling and cutting restorative – a meditative act rather than an annoyance. So vegetables and fruit! Parsnips, carrots, beets, and apples are roasted until golden brown and sweet. They’re combined with greens, pomegranate seeds, walnuts, and a simple pomegranate dressing that takes minutes to whip up.
I’m ready for some greens, something a little on the lighter side. I thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful food from the days prior, my body aches for simple fresh food.
Simple Winter Salad with Apple and Pomegranate
- Easy, delicious, and healthy
- Perfectly balances roasted and fresh ingredients
- Vegan, Paleo, Whole 30 approved
- Perfect for leftover roasted vegetables
Ingredients For Simple Winter Salad with Apple and Pomegranate
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Ground pepper
- Fresh Pomegranate seeds
- Chopped toasted walnuts
- Greens or spinach
- Pomegranate juice
- Dijon mustard
- Balsamic Vinegar
*Tip – the easiest way to remove pomegranate seeds is to cut the fruit into 4 pieces. Fill a large bowl with water and submerge each individual piece and remove the seeds underwater. The seeds will sink and the white part will float to the top and can be easily removed with a strainer. Then strain seeds and voila!
Making Winter Salad with Apple and Pomegranate
Step 1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
Step 2. Add carrots, apple, parsnip, and thyme to other baking sheet and combine with the remaining tbsp oil, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper and mix well. Add to the lower rack of the oven. Roast both vegetable trays until soft – about 25-30 minutes, giving a toss halfway through.
Step 3. Meanwhile, in a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients for the dressing, whisk well, and set aside.
Step 4. When vegetables are done set aside to cool for a few minutes.
Step 5. To assemble salad: Add one cup of greens to plate, roasted vegetables, walnuts, pomegranate seeds and pour dressing over top.
Tips & Substitutions
When it comes to the type of roasted vegetables, the choice is yours but I would recommend sticking to roasted root vegetables. Think sweet potatoes, carrots, beets, rutabaga, parsnips, turnips, etc.
The greens you use are completely up to you. I find earthy salads of this sort to work best with delicate leafy greens and baby spinach. While I love a good crunchy romaine bite, I don’t think it works as well in this salad – at least for me. But feel free to experiment with what you enjoy!
Pomegranate and Pomegranate Juice
If you’re unable to find either pomegranate or pomegranate juice, you can skip both and replace the juice with orange juice or even lemon.
More Salad Recipes You May Like
- Apple and Beet Salad with Candied Walnuts and Cashew Cheese
- Citrus Salad with Cashew Cheese and Toasted Pistachios (Vegan and Dairy Free)
- Egg Salad And Avocado Boats
- Warm Brussels Sprouts Salad with Bacon and Dried Cherries
- 1 apple peeled and thinly sliced
- 3 parsnips peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 4 carrots peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 2 beets peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp fresh chopped thyme (or 1 tsp dried)
- 1/4 cup olive oil divided
- 3/4 tsp salt divided
- 1/2 tsp pepper divided
- 2 tbsp fresh pomegranate seeds (see tip below)
- 2 tbsp chopped toasted walnuts
- 4 cups greens or spinach (or as much as you want)
- 2 tsp pomegranate juice (you can squeeze your own juice out of seeds for strict paleo and whole30)
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. Add cut beets to one baking sheet and toss with 1 tbsp oil, 1/4 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper (or as much as you’d like). Add to the middle rack of the oven.
3. Add carrots, apple, parsnip, and thyme to other baking sheet and combine with the remaining tbsp oil, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper and mix well. Add to the lower rack of the oven. Roast both vegetable trays until soft – about 25-30 minutes, giving a toss halfway through.
4. Meanwhile in the mixing bowl, combine all ingredients for the dressing, whisk well, and set aside.
5. When vegetables are done set aside to cool for a few minutes.
6. To assemble salad: Add one cup of greens to plate, roasted vegetables, walnuts, pomegranate seeds, and pour dressing over top.