Hi lovies! <3 <3
Here I am, yet again, with today’s LUNCH GOALS!!!! I hope you munchkins are into green lentils (& If not, don’t you worry, I will find a way to help you substitute those babies for something you LOVE!). Would you believe me if I told you guys that you will fall so madly in love with this salad that you will NOT BE ABLE TO RESIST HER (& once you whip her up, YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO SHARE HER!!.
THINK: PERFECTLY-COOKED (Obvs!) yummy green lentils, crispy-AF spinach, bell peppers, red onions, radishes, cherry tomatoes & LOADS OF FRESHLY CHOPPED parsley & cilantro. All this beautifulness tossed in a HOMEMADE (DUH!!!)… wait for it… LEMON TAHINI & CUMIN VINAIGRETTE. NO, I’M NOT JOKING & YES, YOU READ RIGHT… How heavenly does that sound RN? AHHHH! My MISS PIGGY GENE was legit freaking out as this babe came together. Oh & don’t even get me started about when I devoured her… Bad news, my loves. Kelly in the Kitch WENT MAD (But, she did so in the best way possible! Promise!). HOW, you ask? Well… She gobbled up this baby nice & slow (FOR ONCE) to savour every single bite! & WOAH.
Ladies & gents, I present you with my Clean-Eating Yummy-AF Green Lentil, Spinach & Fresh Veggie Salad Tossed in a Beautiful Lemon, Tahini & Cumin Vinaigrette a.k.a. This-Babe’s-a-Keeper-Oh-&-You’ll-NEVER-Want-to-Share-Her!
OKAY, so munchkins, since it’s the first time I post a lentil recipe…. GUESS WHAT TIME IT IS? Yes. YOU GUESSED RIGHT. It’s time for NUTRITION-101 WITH KELLY IN THE KITCH (#sorrynotsorry). And today, we talk about NONE OTHER THAN, LENTILS!!!
Before we get into the nutritional punch of these babies, I just want to say that I think they will legit become a staple in my diet! They’re literally the PERF LEGUME (I love that word, man, you?) to throw into salads, bowls, casseroles & soups! Not to mention, the babes are SUPER-DUPER easy to cook, have a beautiful nutty & earth flavour & TONS OF NUTRITIONAL BENEFITS, which I am getting to in just a sec! You ready?
They can help reduce blood cholesterol because they contain LOADS OF FIBRE;
The babes can also help reduce overall risk of heart disease because they are an amazing source of folate & magnesium!
Not only are they super heart healthy, but the insoluble dietary fibre found in these babies helps with digestive health!
OKAY, as if that wasn’t enough (You all know how much I <3 my fibre!), the soluble fibre in lentils also helps trap carbs, slowing down digestion & stabilizing your blood sugar!
OHHHH, did you munchkins know that a whole 26% of lentil’s calories is attributed to protein?!? Basically, LENTILS = GOOD PROTEIN (especially if you are vegan or vegetarian & are trying to substitute for meat protein!)
These cute little munchkins also help increase energy because of its fibre & complex carbs! They are also a great source of iron, which helps transport oxygen throughout your body & is a key nutrient to energy production & metabolism! UHHH, HELLO LENTILS. WELCOME TO MY LIFE!
BEST PART? You get to reap all these beneifts, with an ALMOST-NO-FAT content, a.k.a. NUTRITION WITHOUT THE GUILT!!!! OH & they keep you FULL & SATISFIED AF.
SO, LIKE, ONCE AGAIN, YOU’RE WINNING AT LIFE. Ya dig?
My loves, YOU WILL NEED:
WARNING!!!! There is lots & lots of dicing, slicing, cutting, halving & chopping involved to make this baby come together, but I promise you munchkins, it’s so worth it!! PLUS, I warned you. So you CANNOT, I repeat, you CANNOT, complain later, okay? You embarked on the journey that is this recipe KNOWING that you would have some work to do, SO DO IT. No room for laziness with Kelly in the Kitch!.
FOR THE SALAD:
- ½ cup of sprouted green lentils, COOKED according to package directions (If you are not a fan of lentils, you can substitute these babies for chick peas, lima beans, green peas, or fava beans);
- 200g of spinach;
- 1 medium red onion, DICED;
- 2-3 stalks of celery, DICED;
- 100g of bell peppers, DICED;
- 75g of radishes, SLICED FINELY & CUT LENGTHWISE;
- 150g of cherry tomatoes, HALVED & DICED;
- 4 tbsp. of fresh parsley, CHOPPED;
- 4 tbsp. of fresh cilantro, CHOPPED;
- 3 tbsp. of Parm/Romano or nutritional yeast (OR, as always, the option to COMBINE THEM ALL & CREATE BEAUTIFUL-CHEESY-DELICIOUSNESS is always there!)
FOR THE DRESSING:
- ¼ cup of organic extra-virgin olive oil;
- 2 tbsp. of organic red wine vinegar;
- 2 tbsp. of freshly squeezed lemon juice;
- 2 tbsp. of organic fair trade TAHINI (AHHHHH!!!);
- ½-1 tbsp. of pure organic maple syrup (YOU NEED THIS IN YOUR LIFE. There is A HECK OF A LOT OF SAVOURINESS IN THIS DRESSING, so I figured it would need some natural sweetness & what better way than to naturally sweeten a salad than with MAPLE SYRUP? Right?);
- 2 garlic cloves, MINCED;
- 1 tsp. of ground cumin;
- 1 tsp. of dried oregano;
- ½ tsp. of smoked paprika;
- ½ tsp. of dried minced onion;
- ½ tsp. of garlic powder;
- ½ tsp. of sea salt;
- ¼ tsp. of freshly ground black pepper;
OKAY, NOW LET’S WHIP HER UP!!!!
- FIRST THINGS FIRST LOVIES, cook your beautiful green lentils according to package directions! Once cooked, set aside & let them cool off (DO NOT MIX THEM IN WITH THE OTHER VEGGIES UNTIL THEY ARE COOLED, UNLESS YOU WANT A SOGGY-AF SALAD. Ew. Bye).
- Add your spinach, red onion, celery, bell peppers, radishes, cherry tomatoes, parsley, cilantro & Parm/Romano/nutritional yeast (OR ALL OF THE FREAKING ABOVE) to a LARGE metal mixing bowl (YES, it must be LARGE. YOU NEED ROOM TO MIX, GOSH!) & TOSS ALL THIS COLORFUL-AF-RAINBOW-WONDERFULNESS to combine.
- Once cooled off, add the green lentils o your bowl-of-wonderfulness-that-you-cannot-wait-to-devour(OR, that you ALREADY started devouring as you were mixing it!!!) & TOSS AGAIN to combine with the rest of your beautiful veggies.
- In a separate bowl, WHISK TOGETHER all the yummy dressing ingredients until fully combined & a beautiful dressing consistency is obtained!
- & NOW, the moment when all this perfection-beautifulness-wonderfulness-gorgeousness-GREENESS comes together… POUR YOUR BEAUTIFULLY-CREAMY-CITRUSY-DELISH DRESSING ALL OVER DA BABE. Like, drench the babe in it, literally. MIX WELL so that all your veggies & lentils are evenly coated (We have spoken about this before. Food is good to you. Food is yummy. Don’t make your veggies jealous of one another. OKAY? Treat them equally!!!).
- NOW YOU HAVE PERMISSION TO GOBBLE THIS BABY UP (And please, do not be ashamed if it takes you like five minutes. We are totz in the same boat! #NOSHAME!!!).
ENJOY MY LOVES!!! <3 <3 <3