Fall Harvest Salad - Real Food Whole Life

Fall Harvest Salad

September 16, 2021

top down view of fall harvest salad with apples on top

This Fall Harvest Salad combines fresh greens, roasted cauliflower and sweet potato, along with crisp apple for the perfect autumn salad or side dish. 

Naturally gluten-free and dairy-free with simple ingredient swaps included to help make this vegan & whole30 friendly too!

fall harvest salad on top of wood cutting board with striped napkin

I don’t know about you but I love ordering special seasonal salads when we dine out.

They always have interesting toppings, textures & the best fresh produce.

This delicious seasonal salad has all of that restaurant-quality flavor without the fuss.

The secret is in the simple roasted fall vegetables & homemade, healthy salad dressing.

You just throw the cauliflower florets & diced sweet potato into a hot oven on a sheet pan with a little olive oil & salt.

Everything cooks while you shake up the quick & easy apple cider vinaigrette and gather your toppings.

So simple. So tasty. And can even be prepped ahead of time!

how to use and serve the fall harvest salad

  • Enjoy as a side salad for simply prepared chicken, pork or fish.
  • Serve as a main dish. For added protein, serve with cooked shredded chicken or roasted maple chickpeas.
  • Pair with an easy soup recipe for a fun soup & salad night.
sheet tray with diced sweet potatoes and cauliflower

what goes with the fall harvest salad

this salad makes the perfect side for a hearty chili, we love it with:
it also goes well with autumn soups, we love it with:
it’s also a great side for chicken, we love it with:
sheet tray with roasted sweet potatoes and roasted cauliflower florets

how to prep this fall harvest salad ahead & store leftovers

  • Make the dressing up to 5 days in advance, storing covered in the refrigerator.
  • Roast the cauliflower and sweet potatoes up to 3 days in advance. Store covered in the refrigerator. 
  • Bring the cauliflower, sweet potato, and dressing to room temperature before adding to the salad, or reheat gently in a pan over medium heat to re-crisp.
  • Slice the avocado and apple immediately before serving, then toss with the greens, dressing, cauliflower, sweet potato, avocado, and feta.

Tip: For the freshest salads, don’t cut ingredients like avocado, apple or pears until right before you want to serve them. This helps prevent browning & will give you the best taste (and presentation if you’re serving for a special event).

top down view of fall harvest salad with apples on top

recipe notes, modifications & adaptations

  • Skip the cauliflower and double the sweet potato if you don’t care for cauliflower.
  • Double the cauliflower and skip the sweet potato for a lower carb option.
  • Any leafy green works in place of the arugula. Including baby spinach, baby spring mix, or romaine lettuce.
  • Any nut will work in place of the almonds, such as hazelnuts, pecans, or walnuts.
  • For a nut-free option, use pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds.
  • Any soft cheese will work in place of feta, such as goat cheese. Use a vegan feta to keep this recipe dairy-free.
  • Omit the cheese altogether to make this recipe whole30 friendly.

more fall salad dressings that go well with this salad

close up of mixed green salad with sweet potato and cauliflower

this recipe is…

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I hope you’ll make this healthy Fall Harvest Salad recipe soon.

If you do, be sure to share it on Instagram and tag me at @realfoodwholelife so I can see!

top down view of fall harvest salad with apples on top
5 from 2 votes

Fall Harvest Salad

Yield 6
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 55 mins
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins

This Fall Harvest Salad combines fresh greens, roasted cauliflower & sweet potato with crisp apple for the perfect autumn salad or side dish!

Ingredients

For the Fall Harvest Salad

  • 4 cups small cauliflower florets
  • 2 cups peeled, diced sweet potato
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 bag arugula
  • 2 tbsp toasted slivered almonds
  • 1 small avocado diced
  • 2 tbsp crumbled feta cheese (traditional or vegan)
  • 1 small sweet, crisp apple diced

For the Apple Cider Vinaigrette

  • 1 small garlic clove to taste
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • freshly ground pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400F.
  • Place the cauliflower and sweet potatoes on a large rimmed baking sheet, Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil, and sprinkle with ½ teaspoons kosher salt, tossing to combine.
  • Roast for 20 minutes, flip, and then roast for an additional 25-35 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Meanwhile, make the dressing by lightly crushing the garlic clove with the bottom of a glass jar or side of a knife.
  • To a 8-oz mason jar, add the crushed garlic clove, salt, mustard, and maple syrup or honey, using a fork or small whisk to combine.
  • Add the apple cider vinegar, add the lid, and shake vigorously until the salt has dissolved and all the ingredients are combined.
  • Add the olive oil and pepper, add the lid, and shake vigorously until the vinaigrette has emulsified. Taste and add additional salt or pepper if desired.
  • Remove the cauliflower and sweet potato from the oven, allowing to cool slightly.
  • Assemble the salad by arranging the arugula on a large platter. Top with the roasted cauliflower and sweet potato, along with the slivered almonds, avocado, feta cheese, and apple. Drizzle with half the vinaigrette. Alternatively, add all the ingredients to a bowl, drizzle with half the vinaigrette, and toss to combine. Serve with remaining vinaigrette on the side, or store, refrigerated for another use.

Notes

This recipe makes 4-6 servings
See post, above, for make ahead, storage, and substitution tips.
For a nut-free option, use pepitas or sunflower seeds in place of almonds.
To make this recipe dairy-free and vegan, use a vegan feta.
Omit the cheese and the maple syrup for the dressing to make this recipe Whole30 friendly option.

Nutrition

Calories: 304kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 525mg | Potassium: 682mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 6973IU | Vitamin C: 42mg | Calcium: 117mg | Iron: 1mg
Nutrition disclaimer
did you make this recipe?Mention @realfoodwholelife or tag #realfoodwholelife!

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6 comments to " Fall Harvest Salad "

  • Sarah Dee

    Can’t wait to make this! Really pumped for the ACVinegarette! Any whole 30 options for the maple syrup in the dressing?

    • Robyn Downs

      Hi Sarah, you can just leave the maple syrup out of the dressing to make it Whole30 compliant as well as skipping the feta on the salad. The dressing with still be lovely without the added sweetener. I hope you enjoy this one!

  • Jen

    5 stars
    Made this last night and my us and and I both loved it!! Cauliflower and sweet potato were great and love the dressing.

    • Robyn Downs

      Jen, fantastic, so happy to hear you enjoyed this one. I love that cauli and sweet potato combo, too. Thanks os much for leaving a review! 🙂

  • Lorrie Tom

    5 stars
    This is one of THE best salads we’ve eaten in a long time! 5 out of 5 for sure! All the flavors are perfectly balanced–not too sweet and not too bitter–just delicious! It’s so gorgeous and the colors just scream this is good for you. We eat a lot of salad and it’s hard to find one that surprises us with new flavors. This is it. Make this. Your life will thank you for it. Thanks, Robyn. I posted a picture and review on my Instagram, too and put a link in my profile for it. I want everyone to experience this delicious salad.

    • Robyn Downs

      Lorrie, well you win the internet for best review of the day! Love it! I’ll have to go try to track you down on IG to see the photo. SO glad you enjoyed this one, and thanks so much for taking the time to leave such a thoughtful review!

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If you love this recipe it would mean SO MUCH if you gave it a star rating and left a comment. Your feedback helps me create more recipes you'll love, and helps others find my recipes online. Thanks so much for your feedback! —Robyn

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