This millet salad is packed with vegetables and warm spices like garam masala and turmeric. Chickpeas make it worthy of a stand-alone meal.
Do you ever feel like you have the same few salads on repeat? This colorful millet salad is perfect for shaking things up! Warm spices like garam masala and turmeric add the most unique flavor twist. I really love all the texture, too.
Millet Salad Ingredients
Or you can use couscous for an even quicker cook time
Roasted until it has a bit of caramelization, but isn’t mushy
Red bell pepper
Or any color pepper you like!
Because adding beans makes this filling enough for a light meal
For a bit of juicy sweetness
You can sub spinach or other greens, but I love the peppery flavor of arugula
For crunchy goodness
Garam Masala & Turmeric
And a hefty dose of garam masala & turmeric is key!
If you’re new to cooking with millet, here are the basics!
Millet is considered an ancient grain as it was first farmed thousands of years ago. Cool, right?
It’s a teeny, tiny little grain that puffs up a bit when cooked.
Use millet as you would rice or quinoa in your favorite recipes. It’s naturally gluten-free. The Moroccan mint and lentil salad from my picnic salads post is another great one.
How to Cook Millet
Simmered on the stovetop in water or broth, millet takes about 20 minutes until fluffy and perfect. For extra nutty flavor, you can also toast millet in a dry pan before simmering. I also use my rice cooker to make it 100% hands-off.
Health Benefits of Millet
Like other whole grains, millet is rich in fiber, B vitamins and minerals like magnesium. It also adds some protein and is relatively low in calories for how filling it is.
What does millet taste like?
It has a very mild flavor. Because of this, it works well in a variety of salads and other recipes (including sweet and savory dishes). It’s like a blank canvas! I like using couscous here too, because it’s easier to find and cooks extra-fast.
The nice thing about this salad is you can prep everything while the vegetables roast so it comes together in just over 20 minutes. The warm eggplant and bell pepper wilt the arugula when it all gets tossed together and it’s best served slightly warm!
Can I make this millet salad ahead of time?
Absolutely. Leave out the pecans until just before serving so they don’t get soft (you don’t want to lose the crunch factor).
If it seems a little dry, you can add an extra drizzle of olive oil and toss well to coat. Then let it come back to room temperature. Look at those colors!
You’ll use half the spice mixture on the roasted vegetables and the other half for coating the entire salad to make sure every bite is packed with flavor. This is a great way to incorporate seasonal produce, so don’t feel obligated to use the ones shown here.
What a great way to sneak in those vegetables. If you aren’t big on leafy green salads or feel like you need something more substantial, I would highly recommend giving grain salads a try.
This one is the perfect example of a balanced meal with a mix of protein (chickpeas), carbs (millet and vegetables) and healthy fats (pecans and olive oil). It’s super satisfying and delicious!
More millet recipes:
Spiced Millet Salad
- 2 cups cooked millet (or couscous)
- 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp garam masala
- 1 Tbsp turmeric
- 1 medium eggplant chopped
- 1 red bell pepper finely diced
- 14.5 ounces canned chickpeas drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1 cup arugula
- 1/4 cup pecans chopped
- Salt to taste
- Black pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 450° F
- Cook millet (or couscous) per package directions.
- Meanwhile, mix oil, garam masala and turmeric in a small jar. Pour half of it over the vegetables, tossing to coat. Season with a pinch of salt.
- Spread vegetables on a sheet pan and roast for 20 minutes, tossing and rotating the pan once, halfway through.
- Add millet, roasted vegetables, chickpeas, raisins, arugula and pecans in a large bowl. Pour remaining dressing over the top and toss well until completely coated and arugula is slightly wilted. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- This salad can be made up to one day ahead of time. I recommend adding the pecans just before serving.
Photography by: Leanne Ray at Healthyish Appetite