Ginger & Garlic Sweet Potato Salad Recipe

At Social Pantry Cafe, throughout the week, we have delicious daily changing seasonal salad bowls that are always a hit with the lunchtime folk.  Our aim is to always keep them exciting – Alex Head follows a few golden rules when creating a salad recipe to creating a winning formula:

  1. Start by choosing a grain – this will be the base for your salad
  2. Always add a cheese or seed for texture and crunch
  3. You can never have too many veggies in a salad – see what needs using up in the fridge, then fry it, keep it raw or pan fry to keep your salad interesting

If all of the above seems a bit too tricky to master, just give our Ginger & Garlic Sweet Potato salad a go – it’s a great one for the lunchbox…


Ingredients for one big sharing platter

250g sweet potatoes

100g butternut squash

150g roasted red onions

100g pearl barley

1 bag baby spinach sliced into strips

1 handful of rocket leaves

125g slow roasted tomatoes (140 degrees for 1 hr)

1 garlic clove

1/2 tbsp minced ginger

1tbsp garam masala

1tbsp turmeric

1tbsp cumin

1tbsp coriander

1 tsp onion seeds

1tbsp coriander finely chopped


  1. Roast sweet potato and butternut squash at 180 until brown
  2. Put 1tbsp vegetable oil into a frying pan and gently heat, then add garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant. Add dry spices for a couple of seconds then remove from heat and stir through sweet potato.
  3. Pan roast red onion ½ moons in oil & seasoning until tender
  4. Cook pearl barley in veg stock until tender to taste.
  5. Thinly slice spinach into ribbons and mix through the barley with the rocket
  6. Toss everything together
  7. Season to taste
  8. Garnish with micro cress and onion seeds, sliced fresh chilli
  9. Serve on a great plate which looks gorgeous.
  10. Enjoy!

TIP: a drizzle of yogurt and pomegranate seeds can really bring this to life.

TIME SAVING TIP: cook all your vegetables and barley the day before and just throw together on the day.