Sweet potato and lentil salad Sweet potato and lentil salad Israeli Kitchen Photo: Miriam Kresh

Sweet potato and lentil salad

Sweet potatoes are set off by lentils' earthiness and pungent red onions in this hearty winter salad.

  • Yield: Serves 6
  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 30 minutes

We call them sweet potatoes. That is, I always have. On my recent visit to the United States, I found that they’re called yams. Either way, it’s a recipe that you can cook ahead of time. Kept in a tightly closed container, it keeps well for two days in the fridge. No mayo, eggs or other fragile ingredients, and the combination of sweet potatoes (or yams) with lentils and onions is tasty, satisfying and colorful.

If you have vegetarians at the table, this is a good way to show you care.


  • 3 cups washed, but not peeled, sweet potatoes sliced in bite-sized circles
  • 1/4 cup black or green lentils
  • 1/2 cup salted water for cooking the lentils
  • 1 medium onion
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon, or more
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons maple or silan date syrup
  • 3 large scallions, green parts only
  • Salt and pepper


In a small pot, cook the lentils, covered, in the salted 1/2 cup of water. Cook over a small flame and taste to make sure the lentils are tender. If they look like they’re drying out but are still not tender, add a tablespoon or two of water.

In the meantime, cook the sweet potato slices in plenty of lightly salted water until tender; about 10 minutes. Keep a sharp eye on them because they should not cook until mushy. Once mushy, they won’t serve for salad.

Slice the onion thinly.

In a small bowl, make a dressing of the lemon juice, olive oil, syrup and a little salt and pepper.

While the vegetables are still hot, put them in a bowl with the sliced onions and pour the dressing over all. Stir gently, with a wooden spoon.

Allow the salad to cool, covered. Taste it and add more of the dressing ingredients if you wish. Slice up the scallions and scatter them over the salad, mixing gently once more.

Chill the salad, covered, and serve cold or at room temperature.

The Little One gave this salad the Teen Food Seal of Approval and is enjoying the leftovers as I type. A palpable hit!

Related Topics: Salads, Vegetarian

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