Harvest Bowl Recipe | The Recipe Critic


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This gorgeous Harvest Bowl has all the most delicious flavors of fall packed in one easy salad. It’s filled with creamy sweet potatoes, kale, Brussels sprouts, wild rice, grilled chicken, sweet apple, cheese, crunchy candied pecans, and pepitas with the best balsamic vinaigrette dressing. You’ll be craving it all season long!

Sweet potatoes this time of year are just the best and I can’t get enough, especially in this cozy Sweet Potato Chili and classic Sweet Potato Casserole. Also, crispy Sweet Potato Fries never go out of style!

Top-down view of a salad made with kale, apples, chicken, wild rice, sweet potatoes, pecans, and goat cheese.

Harvest Bowl Recipe

Get ready to fall in love with the textures and flavors in this Harvest Bowl. From the tender sweet potatoes and juicy apples to the crunch from the pecans and pumpkin seeds, every bite is better than the last. The combination of sweet and savory really makes this harvest bowl recipe something special! The perfect finishing touch is a drizzle of incredibly tasty homemade balsamic vinaigrette. You are going to want to make this again and again!

Not only is this dish super delicious, but the ingredients are nutrient-rich and come together for a satisfying and well-balanced meal. The chicken adds plenty of protein while the fruits and veggies fill this bowl with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber. I love to fill my salads with meats, grains, vegetables, cheese, and all the toppings to make it a complete meal and oh so satisfying.

Harvest Bowl Ingredients  

This Harvest Bowl recipe is a mix of tasty ingredients like juicy chicken, fresh greens, and flavorful apple and crunchy pecans! Let’s take a closer look at each ingredient and how they come together to make this wonderful dish. Note: exact measurements are in the recipe card below.

The Salad

  • Sweet Potatoes: For this recipe, we’re roasting one medium chopped sweet potato in olive, salt and pepper.
  • Kale: Nourishing kale is the base for this bowl. See recipe tip below! You could also use spinach if you prefer.
  • Brussels Sprouts: Mixing in sliced Brussels sprouts add even more nutrients and texture. They’re just so tasty!
  • Wild Rice: Naturally gluten-free, a good source of protein and rich in antioxidants and essential minerals, wild rice makes this harvest bowl really filling. You could also use brown rice, it’s another option that’s packed with great vitamins and minerals.
  • Chicken: Use pre-cooked chicken or rotisserie chicken for easy prep. I love this shredded chicken recipe! You could also use this boiled chicken recipe to prep the chicken.
  • Apple: Use a sweet-tart, perfectly crisp apple. I love using Honeycrisp, Pink Lady, Fuji, or Ambrosia apples!
  • Cheese: Sprinkle on crumbled goat cheese or feta cheese for creamy tanginess.
  • Pecans: Candied pecans are sweet and crunchy, and add lots of texture and subtle sweetness to the salad. Use regular toasted pecans or another type of nut, if preferred. Sliced almonds are another great option!
  • Pepitas: With a smoother skin than pumpkin seeds, pepitas are great for adding texture and crunch to salads.

Recipe Tip

Many recipes with kale call for massaging it (it’s naturally a bit tough), but I find it works just as well to remove the leaves from the stems and then chop the kale finely. This is how I like to prepare most of my kale salads. The salad dressing and other ingredients will also help soften the kale up.

Dressing

  • Olive Oil: Smooth, mild oil for the base of the dressing.
  • Balsamic Vinegar: Has a unique flavor that is balanced in both sweetness and acidity.
  • Dijon Mustard: Works as an emulsifier in this recipe to keep the oil and vinegar from separating and also adds zippy flavor.
  • Granulated Sugar: Adds just enough sweetness to contrast the savory tastes.
  • Salt: Just a dash helps season the dressing and balance the other flavors.

How to Make a Harvest Bowl

Just 3 simple steps to make your bowl and dressing! Harvest bowls taste amazing and are really simple to whip up, making them the perfect lunch or light dinner! Here’s how to bring everything together:

  1. Roast the Sweet Potato: Prepare the sweet potato by peeling and dicing it, then tossing it lightly with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 20-25 minutes, or until the potatoes are cooked through and golden brown. Let cool.
  2. Assemble the bowl: Add the kale and Brussels sprouts first, then layer on the remaining ingredients. 

Dressing

  1. Mix the Dressing: Add all the ingredients to a small container or bowl with a lid. Add the lid and shake until fully combined. Pour over the assembled bowl, using as much as desired.
3-photo collage of the mix-ins and dressing for a harvest bowl all being prepared.

Tips and Variations

One of the many things I love about homemade salads is that you can change them up to use whatever ingredients you like best. Here are several ways to make your harvest bowl your own:

  • Prep Tip: Save yourself some time by roasting the sweet potatoes in advance and using rotisserie chicken or pre-grilled chicken. This is a great way to use up leftovers of either ingredient!
  • Use a Different Green: If you don’t like kale or brussel sprouts, substitute for a green of your choice. Spinach, arugula, or spring mix would be a great substitute.
  • What Apple to Use: Go for a very crisp, sweet apple for this bowl. Honeycrisp, Pink Lady, Fuji, or Ambrosia apples are all excellent varieties.
  • Make it Dairy Free: You can easily make this dairy-free by leaving out the cheese.
  • Try Butternut Squash: Mix things up and swap roasted butternut squash in place of the sweet potato.

Pouring dressing over a harvest bowl.

Storing Leftovers

While this Harvest Bowl is best eaten right after it has been assembled, leftovers can be stored for up to a day in the fridge in an airtight container. The ingredients will wilt as they sit, especially if you use a lot of dressing. I don’t recommend eating it after more than 24 hours.

Taking a bite of chicken, greens, sweet potatoes, and rice with a metal fork.

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  • Prepare the sweet potato by peeling and dicing it, then tossing it lightly with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 20-25 minutes, or until the potatoes are cooked through and golden brown. Let cool.

  • Assemble the bowl by adding the kale and brussel sprouts first, then layering on the remaining ingredients.

Serving: 1servingCalories: 962kcalCarbohydrates: 88gProtein: 41gFat: 53gSaturated Fat: 13gPolyunsaturated Fat: 9gMonounsaturated Fat: 28gTrans Fat: 0.01gCholesterol: 72mgSodium: 507mgPotassium: 1475mgFiber: 16gSugar: 31gVitamin A: 27096IUVitamin C: 157mgCalcium: 417mgIron: 7mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.





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