Winter Vegetable Salad with Orange Vinaigrette

Winter Vegetable Salad with Orange Vinaigrette (2)

Our wedding is still three months away but it feels like it’s coming up next week. Time is flying by and there are still so many little details to consider. I never could have imagined how consuming all of it is. Or how expensive.

I’m working extra shifts on the weekends to help offset the cost of everything, so life is busier now than ever. Which is fine. It’s great, in fact. Just a tad overwhelming, you know?

Work like an ant. One day at a time. That’s what I have to remind myself.

Beets & Carrots

It’s been difficult to focus on creating new recipes but I’ve been obsessing over oranges lately. If someone starts peeling one, no matter how far away I am, the bright citrusy scent hits me smack in the face. There’s something so clean and refreshing about that smell!

Or maybe it’s just my immune system begging me to slow down and feed it some vitamin C?

Regardless, I’ve wanted nothing more than to take the plentiful bundles of kale at the market and coat them with a fresh orange vinaigrette.


I know a salad seems unseasonal to those of you who live in the land of ice and snow but it’s been in the 50’s and 60’s here so I’m mixing up the soup rotation with a few salads here and there.

To keep things interesting, I thought adding roasted beets and carrots with a light honey and ginger glaze would be nice.


Then, because I associate beets with goat cheese…not sure why, I finished the whole thing off with goat cheese and pecan crumbles.

Goat Cheese

The dressing was everything I hoped for. Full of citrus flavor but not enough to overpower the subtle sweetness of the glazed beets and carrots.

Plus, it’s colorful and nutritious enough to keep your energy up for whatever life brings. Whether it be shoveling snow or working two jobs to pay for a wedding…

Winter Vegetable Salad with Orange Vinaigrette


Winter Vegetable Salad with Orange Vinaigrette

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: 2 large salads or 4 small

Winter Vegetable Salad with Orange Vinaigrette


2 bunches of kale, removed from stem and chopped

3 beets, peeled and diced

3 large carrots, peeled and diced

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

salt & pepper

2 tablespoons honey

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

4 ounces goat cheese

1/2 cup pecans or walnuts, finely chopped

Orange Vinaigrette

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (I used Trader Joes white balsamic)

1 garlic clove, minced

juice and zest of one large orange or two small

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Prepare beets and carrots by washing, peeling and dicing them.
  3. Arrange the peeled and diced carrots and beets on a baking pan lined with parchment paper or a glass baking dish then coat with two tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Roast in oven for 35 to 40 minutes, stirring half way through so that they cook evenly.
  4. While the veggies are roasting, wash the kale and remove the stem before chopping it in to bite size pieces. Dry thoroughly then set aside in a large bowl.
  5. Prepare dressing by combining all of the ingredients in a small bowl and mixing well. I like to use a food processor to mince the garlic and orange zest then I add the rest of the ingredients and blend.
  6. Pour the dressing into the large bowl and massage the kale with your hands for about one minute, until it is well coated with the dressing.
  7. Add the goat cheese to the finely chopped nuts (again, I like to use the food processor to finely chop the nuts) and mix together until the goat cheese is covered.
  8. Once the vegetables are done roasting, remove them from the oven and drizzle with honey. Sprinkle them with the ground ginger and stir around until evenly coated in the glaze.
  9. Distribute the kale onto separate plates and arrange roasted veggies on top.
  10. Finish with a few tablespoons of goat cheese and serve.

Winter Vegetable Salad with Orange Vinaigrette (1)

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{ 30 comments… add one }

  • Consuelo @ Honey & Figs January 6, 2014, 3:32 pm

    Best of luck with the wedding plans and the extra shifts. I’m sure you’ll do great, but don’t forget to get some relax!
    This salad looks magnificent, and that goat cheese- nut topping sounds amazing. Oh, and the orange vinaigrette seems wonderful as well. I’m a big fan of citrus too : )
    Consuelo @ Honey & Figs recently posted…{Makeover Mondays} Skinny 30 Minute Skillet LasagnaMy Profile

  • Paige@FitNotFad January 6, 2014, 3:34 pm

    There is literally no better combination in the WORLD than beets and goat cheese! And an orange vinaigrette…..ugh this looks perfect.
    Paige@FitNotFad recently posted…MIMM 1/5/14+ Weekly GoalsMy Profile

  • dishing up the dirt January 6, 2014, 3:42 pm

    Good luck with the rest of your wedding planning. I know it can get overwhelming! At least you stay positive and healthy with meals like this! Pass me a fork please :)
    dishing up the dirt recently posted…An Interview With The OregonianMy Profile

  • Elise @ January 6, 2014, 3:46 pm

    You really amaze me. You are super busy and still manage to post awesome recipes, with flawless pictures.
    Elise @ recently posted…Build Up Your BackbendsMy Profile

  • Hillary | Nutrition Nut on the Run January 6, 2014, 3:46 pm

    That is one STUNNING salad, Sarah! Pinning this recipe for sure, sounds cleansing as all get out ;)

  • Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat January 6, 2014, 4:18 pm

    Wow, I don’t know how you do it…wedding planning, extra shifts, blogging…jeesh!

    This salad looks wonderful! I actually never buy beets or have even cooked with them before. I really need to start adding them to my diet more often!
    Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat recently posted…What I’ve Been Up To LatelyMy Profile

  • Amy @ The Little Honey Bee January 6, 2014, 5:07 pm

    I can certainly relate to the busy-ness but I try to remember that everything always gets done in the end :) and this looks absolutely delish! I do miss summer berries but I love these winter veggies.
    Amy @ The Little Honey Bee recently posted…Portugal: December 28-30, 2013My Profile

  • Katherine January 6, 2014, 5:37 pm

    I’ve been obsessing over winter salads lately. I just can’t get enough!! I have been swamped with things to do lately, so I can totally relate. I’ve missed grapes and other summer delights, but all these winter veggies are great!
    Katherine recently posted…Hello 2014.My Profile

  • Diana @sosmallsostrong January 6, 2014, 5:52 pm

    Your such a trooper working the extra shifts! Kudos to you.
    This recipe reminds me of sunny days and I like that. :) I adore goat cheese but never thought of rolling them in crushed nuts. That sounds so tasty. Nice touch!

  • Nicole @ FruitnFitness January 6, 2014, 6:11 pm

    It sounds like you are very busy, I hope your enjoying the time leading up to your wedding and able to enjoy all the details without stressing too much about it. This salad sounds and looks wonderful! I love anything with beets and its nice to combine winter flavors into a salad. Warm crock pot soups are always nice when it’s cold but sometimes, even in the cold of winter, it’s nice to have a big fresh salad.
    Nicole @ FruitnFitness recently posted…Marvelous in my Monday – family editionMy Profile

  • Alexis @ Hummusapien January 6, 2014, 7:20 pm

    That pecan goat cheese has me drooling allllll over the place!! Gorgeous salad, lady.

  • Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) January 6, 2014, 7:53 pm

    The flavor combos and colors in this salad look so freaking delicious. I hope you can find some time to get a little relaxation in before your big day!
    Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) recently posted…Hiking Panoramic HillMy Profile

  • Julia January 6, 2014, 9:48 pm

    Only three weeks left, you must be so excited! Sounds like you’re busy to the max, but soon enough it’ll all slow down and you’ll get to enjoy your big day :) This salad is amaaaaaazing! I love the winter veggies (beeeeeeeeets! mmmmmmm beeeeets!) and yup, goat cheese and beets are one of my favorite food combos, EVER! You hit a home run with this one, lady!
    Julia recently posted…Minestrone Soup with Quinoa (+ Giveaway)My Profile

  • Katie @ Blonde Ambition January 6, 2014, 9:54 pm

    I can’t believe the wedding is coming up so soon! This salad seriously sounds and looks incredible. But let’s be honest, what WOULDN’T pecan/goat cheese crumbles be delicious on?
    Katie @ Blonde Ambition recently posted…Healthy Grocery Shopping on a BudgetMy Profile

  • Ashley January 7, 2014, 3:23 am

    Work like an ant – I like that. I am feeling overwhelmed right now too – between the blog and my job (which is in super busy season right now), it’s hard to keep up. But at least you have the wedding (!!) to look forward to! So exciting : )

    And this salad looks wonderful – I love that you used goat cheese and pecans – some of my favorites!
    Ashley recently posted…Vanilla Mango Spinach SmoothieMy Profile

  • Christine @ Gotta Eat Green January 7, 2014, 4:13 am

    This looks great Sarah! So colourful for this time of year.. the cold weather is definitely getting me down.

    Props to you girl. You are almost there – 3 months!! I’m just behind you (6 months). Wedding planning is definitely draining but it will all be worth it in the end! I wish I had the option to take extra shifts at work, unfortunately we don’t get paid for extra days or overtime. Bummer.
    Christine @ Gotta Eat Green recently posted…Almond Oat BitesMy Profile

  • Erin @ The Almond Eater January 7, 2014, 5:24 am

    Goat cheese+pecan crumbles?? Genius! Good luck with the wedding planning–one step at a time and know that it’s all worth it :)
    Erin @ The Almond Eater recently posted…Mango Salsa Summertime SaladMy Profile

  • Kelly @ Kelly Runs for Food January 7, 2014, 5:31 am

    This looks delicious, definitely pinning that one! I can’t believe how expensive weddings are these days. I know you’re super tired from working all that over-time, but you’ll be relaxing on your honeymoon before you know it!
    Kelly @ Kelly Runs for Food recently posted…New goals for 2014My Profile

  • Rachel @ Bakerita January 7, 2014, 6:48 am

    Mm, this looks awesome!! Definitely need to try it, I love a good salad :) and the orange vinaigrette sounds amazing. Pinned!
    Rachel @ Bakerita recently posted…Gluten-Free Chocolate Brownie CookiesMy Profile

  • Dana January 7, 2014, 6:55 am

    Your photos are always stunning! Love these bright colors! This looks so good!
    Dana recently posted…Can’t Sleep Talk Link UpMy Profile

  • Dana @ Conscious Kitchen Blog January 7, 2014, 7:58 am

    I would give pretty much anything for a 50-60 degree day! I’m so over this cold and snow. I’ve been the same way with oranges. I have a big bag in the fridge. They just taste so good right now!! Good luck with all your wedding planning. :)
    Dana @ Conscious Kitchen Blog recently posted…Eating Mediterranean Part I: The AttitudeMy Profile

  • FitBritt@MyOwnBalance January 7, 2014, 7:58 am

    Good luck with the wedding! I know how stressful it can be but it will be totally worth it. Stress now and then the day before your wedding just let go. What happens will happen and you should just enjoy!
    FitBritt@MyOwnBalance recently posted…Jumpstart JanuaryMy Profile

  • Ang @ Nutty for Life January 7, 2014, 11:53 am

    I definitely love the idea of an orange vinaigrette. A great switch up from the typical lemon juice and super seasonal. I think that beets and oranges would complement each other really well. And the goat cheese crumbles – so creative! I haven’t seen that before.
    Ang @ Nutty for Life recently posted…That Time I Wanted To Be A Meteorologist [Spill It Sunday #6]My Profile

  • Erica {Coffee & Quinoa} January 7, 2014, 1:44 pm

    I sure am jealous of the warm weather you Californians are having! I can’t really complain, since it’s not as cold here in Utah as in the Midwest, but it’s deeefinitely winter. Roasted veggies are just what the doctor ordered! And I am with you on the orange thing – it’s definitely this time of year that I’m craving citrus. It all looks delicious together in this salad!
    Erica {Coffee & Quinoa} recently posted…Chipotle Honey Sweet Potato and Black Bean SalsaMy Profile

  • Daniela @ FoodrecipesHQ January 8, 2014, 1:56 am

    Photography+Recipe: you simply nailed it! The combination kale/beets is so incredibly healthy and appealing.

  • Stacie @ Simply Southern Stacie January 8, 2014, 4:11 am

    How on earth do you come up with such creative recipes? This salad is gorgeous!
    Stacie @ Simply Southern Stacie recently posted…What Defines You?My Profile

  • Tina @ Tina's Chic Corner January 8, 2014, 6:38 am

    I hear ya on the vitamin C…I’ve been the same way! You make a boring salad look fabulous! I’d love this for lunch today.
    Hope you’re wedding plans are going smoothly at this stage. :)

  • Jess January 8, 2014, 7:20 am

    The salad looks so delicious- so fresh and colourful. Love all the photos too :)
    Jess recently posted…Best Buttery Croissants (20-Minute Dough Recipe)My Profile

  • Amy @ Long Drive Journey January 8, 2014, 9:29 am

    I NEED to make that orange vinaigrette! What a fresh taste for a salad dressing. Funny story is that as much as I LOVE kale in mac and cheese (it is so freaking good), I’ve never had it raw. I worry that it would be too bitter for me, BUT I could see this salad going perfectly with spinach!
    Amy @ Long Drive Journey recently posted…The best (and only) veggie burger I’ve ever hadMy Profile

  • Elle | nutritionella January 8, 2014, 10:09 am

    What a gorgeous salad, Sarah! Will definitely be putting that on my list. :) looks delish!
    Elle | nutritionella recently posted…a few favoritesMy Profile


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