As the seasons change so do my salad cravings. As the temps get cooler I crave heartier salads, adding in roasted squash, whole grains, and all the seasonal produce and flavors. This Wild Rice Roasted Butternut Squash Salad has all of that and more!
If you didn’t already know I’m not a boring salad kind of girl. I take my salads seriously and I like them big, and I cannot lie. I also have my basic requirements lots of flavor, texture, and of course nutrition packed!
I always get excited creating new salad combos as the seasonal produce changes. Every year it’s something different as I go off my cravings and what inspires me as I walk through the grocery store or farmers market. I might not be craving pumpkin this year but I am still loving squash, especially roasted squash! Of course apples, but doesn’t compare to my obsession with them last year when I was pregnant. Always pecans and walnuts, and of course my favorite cranberries!! My love for cranberries goes deep and I enjoy them as much as I possibly can between October and the end of the year.
I tweaked this salad a couple of times getting especially excited as after the first bite I knew I would be making it for Thanksgiving! This year we are hosting Thanksgiving at our houses so it should be interesting. I’m ready, as much as I can, because we’ve been having a small Thanksgiving the last two years up at my parents but family wanting to try to go back to a bigger gathering moved it to my house. Interesting to say the least as we still have our Friendsgiving weekend the day after and S turning 16, SO NOT READY FOR THAT!
You don’t need a holiday to make this simple salad though and it’s perfect for meal prep so you can enjoy it through out the week. I honestly think it tastes better the day after as the flavors have time to come together and the greens soften. However it’s also delicious throwing together with warm roasted squash and wild rice. Paired with the crisp apples, chewy tart dried cranberries, toasted walnuts, wild rice, and arugula because have to have a handful of greens to round it all out.
Such a mouthful, in a good way!
If I was able to stop eating the salad long enough to describe it, because talking with food in my mouth is rude, I would say flavorful and filling!
Make it for Meatless Monday, a main or side any day or night, or the holidays and I know you’ll love it as much as I do!
It’s Meatless Monday and there are more great recipes linked up below and as always Deborah and I hope you join us and look forward to what’s cooking in your kitchen!
|Prep Time||15-30 minutes|
|Cook Time||45 minutes|
(6 to 8 main courses, 16-20 side dish/ party)
- 4 c butternut squash cubes (about 1" cubes)
- 5 c cooked wild rice
- 7 oz baby arugula
- 2 apples or pears, sliced (Sweet Tango Apples and HoneyCrisp are our fav)
- 1/2-1 c Craisins, dried cranberries
- 1/2-1 c walnuts, raw/unsalted
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 TBSP pure maple syrup
- 1 TBSP Dejon mustard
- 2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
- 1 TBSP finely chopped shallot
- 1/3 c avocado oil, or extra virgin olive
- Cook wild rice according to package instructions. I like to soak my wild rice overnight before cooking as splits the grains and it's easier to digest. Just rinse rice and cover with cold water and place in the refrigerator overnight. Than cook according to pack instructions and drain excess water.
- Preheat oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with coconut oil or olive oil spray, or use a Silpat mat. Spread butternut squash cubes on prepared baking sheet, spray with coconut or olive oil spray. Roast squash for 25-30 minutes turning half way through until tender and roasted.
- While the squash is roasting prepare the salad dressing. Add all the ingredients to a glass jar with a tight lid and shake to combine. Store in the refrigerator until ready to prepare the salad.
- When the butternut squash is done roasting turn the oven down to 350F.
- Spread walnuts out on a pan and roast for 8-10 mins.
- You can prepare everything ahead of time, with the exception of the sliced apples, about 48 hours before serving.
- You can also throw the salad together, with the dressing and apples (the dressing will help prevent the apples from browning), up to 24 hours ahead of time.
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I also take my salads very seriously! I love to add pears and apples in as well. This is a fab way to use up leftover squash too
Becca | Rabbit Food Runner
What a great fall recipe!