Spicy, sweet, savory, and nutty this Moroccan Roasted Vegetable Salad is surprisingly approachable vegetarian dinner to enjoy year-round.
In this post we will be making Moroccan Roasted Vegetable Salad. This main dish salad is fragrantly spiced, nutty, savory, and an approachable yet exotic way to enjoy a nutritious and delicious dinner. Read on to learn how to make the recipe, read recipe pro-tips, and more.
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If you threw me in the kitchen on short notice and asked me to make a healthy dinner side dish, 9 times out of 10 I'd come out carrying roasted or air fryer roasted veggies.
Satisfying, hearty, and caramelized, roasted veggies are a hit that can complement almost any dinner: burgers, grilled meats, roasted fish, you name it.
But for those nights that, no really, all we want to do is roast veggies? The kind of nights that we are hungry for good nutrition but don't want to slave for it?
That's where this Moroccan roast salad comes in. Simple -- but delicious -- roasted veggies top a bed of steamed lentils and are then sprinkled with pistachios, golden raisins, and crumbled goat cheese before being drizzled with tart and spicy harissa salad dressing.
It's a complete gluten-free and vegetarian dish that is hearty enough for a vegetarian main dish but also can serve up as a side.
The kind of salad that has all balanced yet dimensional flavor components Moroccan food is known for while only calling for 40 minutes of your precious time.
The type of dish I'd be glad to whip up on short notice any day of the week.
This Moroccan salad is...
Long gone are the days of boring salads! This multi-dimensional salad will keep you coming back for more.
- Vegetables: sweet potatoes, onions, carrots, zucchini, sweet peppers, green beans, and crimini mushrooms. If you don't have all of these veggies, you can double up on what you do have to compensate.
- Olive oil
- Lemon - the zest and juice. For easiest use, zest the lemon first and then juice it.
- Ground cumin
- Harissa paste - mild or spicy, depending on your spice preference
- Green lentils - save time on this recipe by using pre-cooked lentils
- Shelled pistachios
- Golden raisins - the light gold cousin of the classic red raisin. See my substitution notes below if you don't have them.
- Crumbled goat cheese
- Pistachios - slivered or sliced almonds can substitute for the pistachios
- Raisins - quartered dried apricots can stand in for the golden raisins
- Oil - avocado oil can replace the olive oil
- Grains - you can also serve this salad over steamed quinoa, brown rice, amaranth, couscous, or teff; whichever you prefer
How to make this vegetable salad recipe...
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
- On one large rimmed baking sheet, combine olive oil, sweet potatoes, onion, carrots, salt and ground cumin. Gently toss until combined.
- On another large rimmed baking sheet, combine olive oil, zucchini, sweet pepper, green beans, crimini mushrooms, and salt. Gently toss until combined.
- Add the sweet potatoes and onions to the oven. Roast for 4 minutes. Add the second tray of vegetables to the oven and roast both trays for 20-22 minutes, rotating the pans and stirring the veggies halfway through the roasting time.
- Whisk the lemon juice, harissa paste, cumin, salt, and lemon zest together until combined. Slowly whisk the olive oil into the dressing.
- Plate the salad: layer the lentils, roasted vegetables, pistachios, golden raisins, and goat cheese on a large salad serving platter. Drizzle the harissa salad dressing over the salad, toss, and serve!
- Cut the veggies uniformly. This will help the vegetables roast evenly. All of the different types of vegetables don't need to be the same size (for example, the recipe calls for ½-inch cubed sweet potatoes but 1-inch pieces of green beans to accommodate for sweet potatoes' longer roasting time), but the pieces of each individual type of vegetable should be about the same size.
- Prepare all the vegetables to roast before starting the onions and potatoes. We will start the sweet potatoes and onions a few minutes before the rest of the vegetables, but have them both ready to go before adding the potatoes to the oven so you don't have to rush getting the second tray ready to roast.
- Don't crowd the baking sheets with vegetables. I.e., use two roasting sheets. This will give the vegetables room to cook off their juices and caramelize, rather than getting soggy and wet.
- Adjust the amount of harissa to your flavor preferences. Adjust the type of harissa (mild or hot) to your preferences as well. 1 tablespoon mild harissa has a bit of kick; 2 tablespoons has some heat. 1 tablespoon hot harissa has some pronounced heat; 2 tablespoons hot harissa brings some fire.
- How to zest the lemon. Zest the lemon by running a Microplane zester or lemon zester over the peel of the lemon. Just zest off the outer most yellow skin, not the interior white pith. The pith is bitter and adds an unpleasant flavor to the dish.
Moroccan salad recipe FAQs:
Harissa paste is a Moroccan spice paste made of red peppers, garlic, oil, coriander, caraway seed, and other seasonings.
You can buy harissa paste at most major grocery store chains in the United States, at Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, and on Amazon.
Cook lentils for 17-20 minutes in a simmering large saucepan full of heavily salted water, stirring occasionally, or until the lentils are tender but the outer skin of the lentil is still in tact. Drain the lentils in a colander and serve in the salad as directed.
This vegetable salad idea can be served hot, warm, or cold; whatever fits your preferences.
It's hearty enough to serve on its own as a vegetarian main dish, but is also delicious topped with grilled or sauteed chicken, salmon, or shrimp.
Add more vegetables to the salad by serving it on baby spinach, baby salad greens, or arugula.
This recipe is naturally gluten-free, vegetarian, and processed sugar-free.
Make this recipe vegan and dairy-free by omitting the goat cheese.
Leftovers last covered in the refrigerator for 4-5 days. They do no freeze well.
Tools needed to make this recipe:
- Large rimmed baking sheets (2)
- Cutting board
- Chef knife
- Measuring cups & spoons
- Silicone spatula
- Wooden spoon (optional)
- Lemon zester/Microplane
- Salad tongs
More vegetable and salad recipes:
- Air Fryer Roasted Vegetables
- Sautéed Zucchini & Yellow Squash
- Roasted Sweet Potato & Quinoa Salad
- Greek Quinoa Salad
- Cranberry & Edamame Brown Rice Salad
- 5 Bean Salad Recipe
If you made and liked this recipe, don't forget to rate the recipe and let me know how it went for you in the comments! It always makes my day to hear from you!