Roasted Sweet Potato Pesto Salad

Roasted Sweet Potato Pesto Salad

When real life happens to you, you become that person you said you never would.

The girl with the over-sized canvas bag with coffee stains all over it because you never seem to remember to throw it in the laundry and besides, the bag is busy holding all your crap, it doesn’t have time for the spin cycle.

The girl with the super big hair. Big and frizzy.

The person who spends the entire day in workout clothes whether or not she actually works out. Did she get a workout in? Who knows, but either way, everything else she owns is dirty, so yoga pants it is!

Roasted Sweet Potato Pesto Salad

Also real: salad. It is no longer the case that the more char broiled barbecue burgers you eat, the skinnier you get. Salad is a real part of your life now. And you enjoy it. Hop in your time machine and tell that to your 7-year-old self!

Such is life, such is truth. Eventually, many of those things you exempt yourself from as know-it-all 19-year-old become your bread and butter in your mid-twenties. You never would have thought to serve a salad leukwarm, and you’re doing it. You would have never thought to use kale pesto sauce as salad dressing…also doing it.

This salad is a total change-up from the regular toss-it-all-together salad I normally make. It’s electic yet sophisticated. Adult-esque but fun. It’s bangarang, let’s make it, shall we?

Roasted Sweet Potato Pesto Salad

Roasted Sweet Potato Pesto Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Author: Julia


  • 2 cups sweet potato chopped (1/2 of a large sweet potato)
  • 2 teaspoons grapeseed or olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 avocado diced
  • 1 stalk green onion chopped
  • 6 cups baby kale*
  • 2 tablespoons to 3 pesto sauce ** to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Chop the sweet potato into ½” pieces. Coat the sweet potato in a couple teaspoons of oil, shake some salt and pepper over them and bake in the oven for 30 minutes, stirring a couple of times part-way through.
  3. Once the sweet potato is soft, remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly.
  4. In a large salad bowl, toss the baby kale (or spinach or spring green mix) in a couple of tablespoons of store-bough or homemade pesto sauce.
  5. Add the diced avocado, green onion and roasted sweet potato and toss together. I like serving this salad slightly warm by adding the roasted sweet potato when it’s still warm. You’d prefer, allow sweet potato to cool all the way before adding it to the salad.

Recipe Notes

*You can also use spinach or spring green mix.
** I used my recipe for homemade kale and basil pesto sauce. You can find the recipe here

Roasted Sweet Potato Pesto Salad


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  1. Jennie @themessybakerblog

    Yoga pants and I have definitely become close these past few years. They’re just so easy–no thinking required. Roll out of bed and slip ’em on with a t-shirt. Done! Yeah, salad and I have become BFFs, too. I blame it on my stupid hips and muffin top. This salad looks so good.

  2. Abby

    it’s so true! I love the feeling after a light yet satisfying meal like this. My body is just like yeah! let’s do this!! man I am craving that pesto now, looks so good!

  3. DessertForTwo

    This sounds fabulous! Yes, my metabolism slowed at 25. I could no longer eat junk food at 9pm and go to bed. It’s ok, because I’ve got greek yogurt now. It fills the void. And homemade potato chips and sweet potato fries! I still get to eat what I like, but a tad healthier. Here’s to the metabolism change that hits at 30!

  4. Tieghan

    This salad sound awesome!! Even if I eat it in my PJ’s, which honestly I probably will cause these day it’s all I want to wear! I mean if I am cooking all day whats the point. Right?

    Anyway I love this salad!

  5. Erika

    Ah yes. Becoming that dreaded person I never said I would be…check. But also a person that’s not half bad in ways–check. Thanks real life. On the bright side, this salad definitely fits into the latter category! Super yum!! Using pesto as a salad dressing is such a bomb idea. Can’t wait to try it!!

    Also, this took me the longest time to figure out so just passing along in case it’s helpful to you–not sure if you’re using Ziplist for your recipe formatting, but for me, I can make a link within the recipe “box” by putting everything in brackets and separating the text and hyperlink with a “|” (shift + the key under backspace). I.e. [recipe here|]

    Anyhoo, just one step easier for the reader if you like 🙂

    1. Julia Post author

      THANK YOU! You have no idea how helpful this is! I appreciate you passing along the knowledge…still getting my ZipList coding down 🙂

  6. stephie @ EYHO

    What a smart combo of flavors. Someone was wearing their smarty (workout) pants when she came up with this!

    *you have once again proven with this post that we are the same person just living half a country apart*

  7. MC@ThousandStoryKitchen

    Wow, I am SO the girl with the unwashed canvas bags AND the workout clothes- I put them on in the morning so I’ll remember to workout… It doesn’t really happen. I pretend I did it. GOSH, though. This salad looks so amazing and elegant and different! I’m all over it!

  8. Monet

    I live in “work-out” clothes. Black leggings have become my best friend! So have salads like this one. Goodness, it looks delicious! Thank you for sharing, my friend!

  9. Ann

    You are absolutely right. A younger version of myself would’ve never eaten a warm salad, or one with sweet potatoes for that matter. And P.S. I’m typing this in my comfy cozy yoga pants. Real life is so much better!


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