Wild Rice with Apples, Kale and Cider Vinaigrette is my most favorite fall creation yet! Full of greens, savory butternut squash and packed with apple flavors – it’s an irresistible combination!
Wild rice sits patiently in my pantry until fall. It was a good long wait and it really wanted to come out in style. So I created this super stylish, in-season salad featuring freshly picked Cortland apples and my garden kale that I have admittedly ignored almost all summer. Apparently I had better things to do than eat kale this summer.
Growing up in the Midwest – Minnesota and Illinois – I ate a lot of wild rice. I find it a bit harder to come by here in Pennsylvania…a lot of rice blends and when I do find a bag of just wild rice, it’s a tiny little sack. So anytime I’m visiting family, I pick up the grande version.
This summer I spent some time in Minnesota for a family reunion. Here’s a snap from the trip – it’s pretty classic Minnesota!
If you don’t have wild rice available near you, it’s easy to purchase on Amazon though – Trader Joe’s and Lundberg are my personal favorites.
Wild rice is super healthy – containing almost twice the protein and fiber as brown rice plus all kinds of other vitamins and minerals – and adds a very unique and nutty flavor. I love it’s chewy texture – similar to barley.
Did you know wild rice isn’t really rice – it’s a seed! (affiliate links help support OatandSesame)
What’s exciting about this salad – besides the fact that it might just be my new favorite dish – is that I used my new KitchenAid attachment – the spiralizer. I was anxiously awaiting apple season so I could core and cut perfect apple slices with the flip of a switch! Love it! Definitely a good splurge!
The zingy apple cider vinaigrette is really bright and amps all the flavors in this dish. Cortland apples add a sweet crunch. Since don’t yellow quickly, so they are a great choice for salads. Sweet potato bites and toasted pecans give each bite a taste of fall flavors!
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Happy fall everyone! Enjoy all your apple adventures!!
- 1 cup wild rice
- 3 cup chopped kale
- 1 large sweet potato, chopped
- potato seasonings: dried parsley, cinnamon, salt and pepper (a few dashes of each)
- 2 Cortland apples, cored and thinly sliced
- 1.5 cups pecans, toasted
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- ¼ cup raw apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon raw honey
- ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Start by cooking the wild rice. Bring 1 cup dry rice to a boil with 3 cups water and ½ tsp salt. Cover and simmer 45 minutes until tender. Drain and set aside.
- While the rice is cooking prepare the rest of the ingredients and the dressing.
- Combine all ingredients in a mason jar, shake until incorporated, set aside.
- Trim and chop the kale. Place in a bowl and toss with a couple tsp of the dressing. Massage it into the kale. Set aside.
- Heat a large skillet over medium high with 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add chopped sweet potato toss to coat with olive oil. Season with parsley, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Sauté 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
- On a rimmed baking sheet, toast pecans at 350F for 5 minutes until starting to smell toasty.
- To assemble the salad, mix everything in a large bowl. Topping with pecans and saving a few apple slices to garnish the top.
- *If not serving right away, wait to add the dressing to the remainder of the salad. I like to add the dressing to each individual serving.