This Lentil Pomegranate Salad is bursting with flavor! Fresh greens, herby lentils, and juicy pomegranate tossed in a cider dressing for the perfect side salad or weekday lunch. Vegan & Gluten-Free.
- 1 cup (200 g) dry french lentils
- 1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
- 2/3 cup (96 g) toasted hazelnuts*
- 3/4 cup (122 g) pomegranate arils (about ½ pomegranate)
- 1 cup (25 g) chopped parsley leaves
- 6 ounces (170 g) baby kale or salad greens
- 1/2 cup (65 g) Quick-Pickled Red Onions (optional)
For the Simple Cider Dressing:
- 1/3 cup (80 mL) extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small garlic clove, grated (or 1 tsp garlic powder)
- 2 teaspoons grade A maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon pink or sea salt
- Black pepper, to taste
- Prep: Preheat the oven to 350F and set a small baking sheet to the side. Add the lentils, salt, and 3 cups of water to a large pot. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 20-25 minutes, or until tender. Drain the lentils and rinse with cold water. Set Aside.
- Hazelnuts: While the lentils are cooking, toast your hazelnuts. Add the hazelnuts to the baking tray and bake in the middle rack of the oven for 10-15 minutes, stirring the tray every 2-3 minutes. Watch carefully, so they do not burn! Once toasted, transfer the nuts to a clean dish towel, cover, and let sit for 1 minute, to steam. Rub the nuts vigorously in the towel to remove any loose skin, then transfer the clean(-ish) nuts to a cutting board. Chop roughly, then set aside.
- Dressing: Add the oil, vinegar, maple syrup, mustard, garlic, salt, and pepper to a small glass jar. Seal well and shake until emulsified.
- Assemble: Add the lentils, pomegranate, and parsley to a large bowl and toss with half of the dressing. (If you have time, you can chill this mixture in the fridge* for 30 minutes – or overnight – for more flavor) Arrange the mixed greens in the base of a serving bowl, then top evenly with the lentil mixture plus the toasted hazelnuts and pickled red onions. Drizzle with the remaining dressing, or leave it off to the side for people to add as they please.
- Serve: Serve chilled; dressed leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.Store any leftover dressing in the fridge for up to 10 days. (Note: the olive oil may solidify in the fridge, but will soften after about 30 minutes at room temperature).
- Lentils: brown lentils can be used instead of french lentils, but they won’t be as firm. Black lentils will work as well! Cook all lentils according to package instructions, or until tender.
- Oil-Free: use this tahini-based cider dressing instead!
- Nut-Free: replace the toasted hazelnuts with pumpkin seeds – no need to toast, or toast for 5-7 minutes following the same instructions if you’d like 🙂