Avacado Sandwich with Green Harissa . Sprouted Kitchen

"For whatever it's worth: It's never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you live a life you're proud of, and if you find that you're not, I hope you have the strength to start over."

- Eric Roth, Benjamin Button (a story by F. Scott Fitzgerald)

I've been writing emails with one of my longest-time friends about the hamster wheel of worry and fear and how it can hold us in its grip. Her being a new mom, myself about to be one, and the fresh batch of angst that comes along with a little life dependent on you and doing things "right."

I love this quote, T, made me think of you. May we be women of confidence and faith - that we fearlessly enjoy the ride relieved we don't control the universe. xo

Avacado Sandwich with Green Harissa . Sprouted Kitchen


Green Harissa recipe adapted from Ashley Rodriguez for Food + Wine

Hugh isn't huge into mint, so while Ashley calls for 1 cup each mint and cilantro, I cut the mint yield with half parsley and it worked great. Not too minty while still offering some of it's fresh flavor. Seed the jalepenos depending on your heat tolerance - I took out about half the seeds and thought this had the perfect amount of spice. Click on the link for her original recipe where she tosses it with noodles, shrimp and feta. Sounds great.

I went for a straight harissa spread, while we mixed Hugh's with 2:1 harissa to organic mayo ratio and it was delicious. Possibly preferred. If you are one for high-quality mayo, creamy greek yogurt or even a dairy-free cream cheese, the harissa is perfect for a sammy when it has this creamy factor going on as well. Add roasted chicken, quick seared tofu, a fried egg...really you could expand from here a million ways. 


  • /green harissa/
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 cup cilantro
  • 1/2 cup mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup parsley
  • 2 jalepenos, stemmed and seeded to your heat preference
  • juice of one lemon
  • 1/2 tsp. each cumin, ground fennel seed, sea salt
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil



  • 2 whole grain rolls or 4 pieces bread of choice
  • 1 large, ripe avocado
  • 2 leaves romaine lettuce
  • 1 small bulb fennel, sliced super thin


Avacado Sandwich with Green Harissa . Sprouted Kitchen

In a food processor, add the garlic, cilantro, mint, parsley, jalepenos, lemon juice, cumin, fennel, salt and pulse to combine. With the motor going, drizzle in the olive oil until blended but still a little rough. Transfer to a container and set aside. 

Toast your bread. Mash up the avocado with a pinch of salt. Spread a few spoonfuls of harissa on one side of the bread and mash half the avocado into the other side of the bread. Layer a piece of romaine and a handful of thin sliced fennel and close up your sammy to enjoy or pack for an adventure. 

Avacado Sandwich with Green Harissa . Sprouted Kitchen

Reader Comments (57)

Yum! Leave it to Ashley! Want this soon.

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered Commentershanna mallon

I love the quote, too. And love that close friendship can get us through no-matter-what in life. The sandwich looks yummy. Makes me long for spring. It hasn't arrived here in New England yet.

On the topic of parenting, it's a journey. The most fabulous journey I can imagine. Here's what I wrote about it recently: . Made the soup when my son was home from college for a visit recently....


March 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDena@Gathering-Flavors

Harissa is one of my very favorite condiments. This creamy green version is the perfect start to Spring!

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKaren

This recipe sounds amazing!! :) And love the quote/commentary ... so true!

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMeagan Davenport

Been thinking about ya and all of the big things going on and hoping that you're doing well. I love that quote. And I LOVE harissa. xo

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKimberley

This looks so green and fresh and perfect for springtime!

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterRossi @ A Baking Girl

This sounds so bomb. Props to Ashley and also that mayo mixin' doesn't sound like a bad idea either.

Hoping you guys are getting a handle that feels right on all of your goings-on right now too. We're kind of wrapping up our house reno stuff, so I've been looking back on it and thinking about ya, all in the midst of it. Been loving all of the thoughts on the changes you've been writing about here. xo

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

Perfect timing on that quote for me today. And love the avocado sandwich, obviously : )

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterRachael@AnAvocadoADay

I can't wait to have this with a fried egg on top for brunch this weekend!

This looks amazing! Always love using avocados and finding now ways to do it!

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterVegan Woman

Wow oh wow! Green harissa! How awesome! This sandwich is so freaking beautiful. I love it and can't wait to try it.

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJade

Loving the light in your new place, guys :)

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterkelsey

We always have a jar of homemade red harissa in the fridge (I think I may be addicted!)
This looks like a lovely option to add to the harissa repertoire - thank you!

March 20, 2014 | Unregistered Commentertea-in-tangiers

"May we be women of confidence and faith - that we fearlessly enjoy the ride relieved we don't control the universe." I heard myself say "YES!" when I read this sentence. So well said, Sara. It's good to keep in mind, although, it sometimes feels so very hard to live up to it.
This sandwich looks so good. Would love to have one for lunch.

My eyes light up every time a new Sprouted Kitchen post arrives in my reader but I don't often comment here. Just wanted to say this looks absolutely delicious, and that I love that quote. Life is scary, but usually in a very good way, pushing us to do better, be braver and live life to its absolute maximum. Here's to fancy avocado sandwiches and being proud of life.

March 21, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterthelittleloaf

Love, love, love harissa. This is almost a cross between chimichurri and harissa and it looks really good. I agree, there's something that mint adds to these sauces that other herbs can't. Worry and fear can get the best of us because we're so caught in looking toward the future or thinking about the past. The greatest but most rewarding challenges in life is learning the art of being present for now. I think this is a life-long learning curve. ;-)

Love Harissa and the quote! Inspired. Thx

So much green!! Looks amazing!

March 21, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterChelsea

This looks very good. Actually, with all of the recipes I've look at here, I think the pictures really help sell it. You take pictures that make me hungry!

March 21, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJohn B

I am always so educated and inspired by your recipes. Thanks for opening new worlds (like Harissa) to me! :)

March 21, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKristina A

I love this recipe and harissa too! These pics are so bright and green, can't wait to try this!

The green harissa sounds so intriguing like a mix, reminiscent of chimichurri and pesto at the same time :)

March 21, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJ.S. @ Sun Diego Eats

Just FYI, that is not a F. Scott Fitzgerald quote. This was from the movie The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, which is a F. Scott Fitzgerald short story, but that quote was not found in the book, but was added by Eric Roth who wrote the screenplay. F. Scott Fitzgerald wouldn't have said something so cutesy. Anyways, the recipe looks great!

March 22, 2014 | Unregistered Commenteryumdumdingdong

I am forever astonished at the way in which just the right words cross my path at just the right moment.

Thank you, F. Scott, and Sara, for that. I owe you. Both.


March 22, 2014 | Unregistered Commentermolly

LOOKS DELISH! I'm afraid yumdumdingdong is right! it's Eric Roth - but I think it easily could have been Fitzgerald!

March 23, 2014 | Unregistered Commentergrace

I've been a vegetarian since January and I need new ideas for my sandwiches, thanks for the recipe!

March 23, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterIosune | Minimal Eats

Oh my God... I'm lusting over this sandwich~~~ can't wait to make them soon! thank you for sharing. :)

March 23, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJeanette

Awwww man. I have all of these ingredients and just made a super lackluster breakfast. Now that I'm settling into my favorite Sunday tradition of blog reading, coffee, and breakie, I'm so disappointed I didn't see this sooner! Pinning to make for the future.

March 23, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSam

I think of that quotation often + the sense that it's never too late to start over. I think it's particularly apt at this time of year when everything feels so full of possibilities and fresh starts. This is a beauty of a sandwich, just right for the season.

March 23, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKathryn

As a new mama myself, I can definitely relate to the hamster wheel. I'm sure you'll be a wonderful mom - just trust your intuition and don't worry too much about how to do things "right". The harissa sounds lovely! xo

March 23, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJenn @ Foodess

Hello! I really enjoy your blog and have been following it for some time now. Have you considered enabling your site so people can pin from it instead of going to your actual pinterest page? I mean, I really wanted to pin the recipe so I did go and find the Sprouted Kitchen Board, but it would be nice to just pin from here as well. Thank you and continue to look lovely while making lovely food! ;P

March 23, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterROE

Just made this (I added chicken and placed on toasted bread) - best sandwich! It felt so healthy, was very filling and untterly bursting with flavour. x

March 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterLaura Furness

So pretty and so fresh!
I love it ;)
And congrats on your baby-on-the-way ;)
I myself am also pregnant, 2 months to go! This is my second, but wouldn't you know I'm also kind of freaking out! LOL ;)
But I remember that those instincts come right in and 'we' just know what to do ;)
Trust yourself that it will all just come to you - naturally... that's how moms are created - in that split second you get to hold your baby in your arms ;)
Congratulations again!
Can't wait to hear all about your new arrival!!
xox ella

March 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterPure Ella

I LOVE that you made this, made it your own and that you are in YOUR house!! Ready for house guests?! Kidding, sort of. We miss the Forte's!!

March 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Oh man, this sandwich sounds amazing. Super green and rich and tangy all at once!

March 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterEileen

That's funny, my husband isn't a huge mint person either. Who doesn't absolutely adore fresh mint? It's craziness! Anyways, I think I'll have to make this come summer :) Also, that quote from B. Button is the best ever :)

To me this is a perfect "me" sort of lunch. Me, this sandwich and my computer. Love it.

March 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKathy @ Olives & Garlic

This looks delicious! Just polishing off a batch of your triple chocolate cookies and will be making this next. If you don't mind me asking, what brand of bread did you use/do you like? I can never find a sliced loaf that makes me happy

March 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJulia

Such a lovely sandwich. Definitely something for me, with the creamy and spicy flavors. I bet a poached egg on top would be wonderful too.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDenise | TLT

This looks like one I'll be whipping up now and throughout summer. Sounds so refreshing!

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterIleana

This looks so fresh and delicious. I can't wait to try it!

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMary

made this today for lunch! i LOVE all things from the sprouted kitchen!
thank you sara - you inspire me to cook for my family (4 kids) and take care of myself.
all my best to you.

March 26, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterleith b

Do you permit sharing? I would love to save some of your recipes to Pinterest.

March 26, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterkitblu

I've been craving avocado something fierce since coming back from a trip to Europe. I've never made green harissa... looks like a great thing to have on hand for all sorts of sandwiches, this one included. Thanks!

March 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKatie in New York

THIS is what I need today. And forever. Amen.

April 1, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterBev Weidner

THIS is what I need today. And forever. Amen.

April 1, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterBev Weidner

Thank you for giving me another excuse to eat avocados. I love them so, so much. LOL. Have a wonderful weekend! :-)

April 4, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDiane @ Detox Drinks

Yum! Just made this, so good! Check out my blog if you have a chance!

April 5, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterRoxy

This recipe is a winner. I ate the whole batch of green harissa in one day - smothered on this sandwich (A+), stirred into guacamole (also A+) and then with whole wheat penne and feta cheese. Next time I'm doubling the recipe!

April 7, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSasha

oh YUM! the Harissa reminds me of the "pesto" variations my dad serves up. This is sure to be a keeper.

April 8, 2014 | Unregistered Commentershellsten

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