Caramelized "Spoodles" with Cashew Pesto & Lemony Pepita Spinach Salad
More pesto, please.
I like anything with pesto… anything caramelized… and pretty much anything with sweet potatoes so this was an easy-no brainer.
I loved making this because there was minimal prep, aside from spiralizing the sweet potatoes - but that can easily be avoided by buying spiralized sweet potatoes.
Other than that - the majority of time is spent cooking, enjoying a glass of wine and listening to your favorite playlist (currently on repeat in my kitchen: “Beige” by Yoke Lore.)
A spiralizer or [pre-spiralized sweet potatoes] for the “spoodles”, or sweet potato noodles
A food processor, ninja, or dry blender (for the pesto)
A large, non-stick pan
Caramelized Sweet Potato Noodles
with Cashew Pesto & Pepita Spinach Salad
Serves 2 - can easily be doubled to feed more. ☺️
For the sweet potato noodles:
1 large sweet potato
1-2 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1-2 TBSP Ghee (if you want to Paleo-ize your noodles)
For the salad:
Two large handfuls of spinach
2 TBSP Pepitas (Pumpkin Seed Kernels)
5-7 grape tomatoes (optional, I used Kumato because they’re sweet & savory)
2 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Himalayan Sea Salt*
For the cashew pesto:
1 bunch or 1 cup fresh basil
2 TBSP Raw Cashews
1/4 cup Nutritional Yeast**
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove
Splash of lemon juice
Himalayan Sea Salt & Lemon Pepper to taste*
Start by heating olive oil or ghee in a large non-stick skillet until hot, 2-3 minutes on high.
While oil is heating up, spiralize sweet potatoes to the setting of your choice.
Add sweet potato noodles to skillet and stir for even distribution. Let sit until sweet potatoes have begun to caramelize (or brown) - about 2-4 minutes, depending on heat of your stove - then reduce heat to low and cover.
Make the Cashew Pesto:
Add basil, EVOO, cashews, garlic, nutritional yeast and lemon juice to food processor, Ninja, or dry blender.
I used a small squeeze from the 1/2 lemon for my salad - you don’t need a ton, just a bit to brighten the flavor.
Pulse until creamy or blended to your liking, then add salt & pepper to taste and pulse again.
I used my Ninja because it’s small, much easier to clean, and does the job perfectly.
Make the Pepita Spinach Salad:
Chop spinach, and add to a bowl with tomatoes, pepitas, EVOO & fresh lemon juice. Mix well; salt & pepper to taste (I usually add a few dashes of each).
Check sweet potatoes to ensure they’re done to your liking & remove from heat.
That’s it! Time to plate!
Divide the spinach salad onto two plates, top with caramelized sweet potatoes, and drizzle with cashew pesto. Refill your wine if needed and enjoy! ;)
*Note: You can use regular sea salt, but I prefer Pink Himalayan Sea Salt because it contains trace minerals including iron, calcium, magnesium & potassium. Either way, the salt majorly enhances the flavor so don’t leave it out!
**Nutritional Yeast: Weird name, amazing flavor and health benefits. I use it almost every day because when mixed, it tastes like cheese and is loaded with good-for-you benefits like B-vitamins, trace minerals, protein & essential amino acids.