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Tired of boring salads? This sweet potato salad recipe is anything but that — and it’s perfect for fall! Roasted sweet potatoes and curly kale mingle with pumpkin seeds, tangy goat cheese, and a sweet honey dressing — it’s one of those healthy salad recipes that makes you forget you’re even eating a salad. This one is similar to my butternut squash salad, except this time I made it with sweet potatoes for a variation in texture and flavor. You’re going to love it!
Why You’ll Love This Sweet Potato Salad Recipe
- Sweet and savory fall flavors
- Perfect balance of soft and crunchy textures
- Easy to find ingredients
- Just 15 minute prep
- An easy side dish or light lunch
Ingredients & Substitutions
This section explains how to choose the best ingredients for the best sweet potato salad, what each one does in the recipe, and substitution options. For measurements, see the recipe card below.
- Sweet Potatoes – I peeled them, but you can scrub them well and leave the skin on if you like. Cut them into small cubes, so that they roast quickly. You can also warm up leftover roasted sweet potatoes if you have any.
- Olive Oil – Adds flavor and helps the seasonings stick to the potatoes. You could also use avocado oil.
- Seasoning – Including garlic powder, sea salt, and black pepper.
- Curly Kale – I like pairing this variety with the potatoes’ sweetness, but you can also use other greens, like spinach or arugula, or other kale varieties, like Lacinato or Red Russian kale.
- Red Onions – These add bite for contrast. You can also use yellow onions, shallots, or scallions.
- Dried Cranberries – I like to use my own homemade sugar-free dried cranberries, but regular or store-bought work too!
- Crumbled Goat Cheese – Adds a tangy, creamy flavor and texture to the sweet potato salad. Depending on the flavors you like, feta cheese or blue cheese would make good substitutes.
- Pepitas – These pumpkin seeds add a crunchy texture, but you can swap other nuts or seeds, like walnuts, almonds, pecans, or sunflower seeds.
- Salad Dressing – I made my 5-minute sugar-free salad dressing with olive oil, apple cider vinegar, natural zero sugar honey, salt, and pepper. You can also add a teaspoon of Dijon mustard to the dressing. If you prefer your dressing a less sweet taste, this sweet potato salad would be just as delicious with my tangy and zesty lemon vinaigrette.
How To Make Sweet Potato Salad
This section shows how to make kale sweet potato salad, with step-by-step photos and details about the technique, to help you visualize it. For full instructions, including amounts and temperatures, see the recipe card below.
- Season the sweet potatoes. In a medium bowl, toss the sweet potato cubes with olive oil, garlic powder, sea salt, and black pepper.
- Roast the sweet potatoes. Transfer sweet potato cubes to a lined baking sheet in a single layer, and bake until tender and browned.
- Make the dressing. Meanwhile, whisk together the honey dressing here.
- Massage the kale. Place the kale into a large bowl. Pour half of the dressing over top of the kale. Gently massage the leaves, until they become tender.
TIP: Massaging kale with dressing helps to break down the tough fibers in the leaves and infuses them with flavor.
Skipping this step can leave you with a tough kale leaves that are hard to chew.
- Assemble the sweet potato salad. Add the roasted sweet potatoes, red onions, dried cranberries, goat cheese, and pepitas to the bowl with the kale. Pour more dressing over the salad and gently toss to coat.
- Bacon – For a bacon sweet potato salad, add 4-6 slices of crumbled, cooked bacon. Cook bacon in the oven, air fryer, or even in the microwave.
- Proteins – To make it a complete meal, throw in some sliced healthy baked chicken breast, flaky baked salmon, or simply canned black beans.
- Avocado – You can’t go wrong with creamy avocado to balance the sweetness.
- Veggies – Salads are a great way to use up whatever you have on hand. Try celery, carrots, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, or bell peppers.
Keep leftovers of this kale and sweet potato salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. If possible, I recommend storing the sweet potatoes separately, so that you can reheat them.
You can also just chop the ingredients and make the dressing ahead, but cook and assemble the day-of.
What To Serve With Sweet Potato Salad
This sweet potato salad recipe is very versatile and goes with just about anything — my favorite kind of side dish! Try it with these dishes:
- Soups – Pair it with broccoli cheese soup, a copycat Panera Autumn squash soup, or butternut squash soup for a comforting autumn lunch.
- Chicken – Sweet potato salad goes with almost any of my chicken recipes. You can keep it simple with chicken leg quarters (or just baked chicken legs), or make something a little more special, like .
- Seafood – For a light and refreshing meal, pair this dish with air fryer salmon, flaky baked cod, or juicy shrimp skewers.
- Pork – Make an elegant side for make-ahead dinners, like slow cooker pork tenderloin or juicy Crock Pot pork chops.
- Holiday Mains – The bright colors in this salad (and the ability to prep it in advance) make it perfect for holiday meals… even though it’s so easy. Try it with spatchcock chicken, make a whole turkey in a bag, an air fried turkey breast (or roasted turkey breast), or even a lobster tail recipe.
More Fall Salad Recipes
Look for more salads perfect for fall? Try some of these other easy ideas:
Sweet Potato Salad
Sweet Potato Salad
This sweet potato salad recipe has the best fall flavors: Sweet potatoes, curly kale, sweet cranberries, crunchy pepitas, and honey dressing.
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Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (204 degrees C). In a medium bowl, combine the sweet potato cubes, olive oil, garlic powder, sea salt and black pepper. Toss to coat.
Transfer the sweet potato cubes to a lined baking sheet in a single layer and roast for 35-40 minutes, until tender and browned.
Meanwhile, make the sugar-free salad dressing here.
Place the kale into a large bowl. Pour half of the dressing over top of the kale. Gently massage the kale, until it becomes tender.
Add the roasted sweet potatoes, red onions, dried cranberries, goat cheese, and pepitas. Pour the remaining dressing over the salad and gently toss to coat.
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Serving size: 1 cup
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