We’ve got the perfect warm salad to kick off the fall season. It’s rustic, flavorful, healthy, colorful…we could go on with all kinds of descriptions but let’s end with this: it’s delicious. A warm salad like our roasted butternut squash and kale salad makes for a very satisfying mid-day meal or is perfect for a light dinner. Don’t let the word “salad” fool you, there’s nothing dainty about this dish, from the squash to the kale you’re eating a meal that is hearty and nutritious, but what’s most important is that it tastes good!
If you’ve never considered a salad to be a meal, then this salad will quickly change your mind. It starts with the butternut squash, roasted to heighten its natural sweetness, and made sweet and savory by tossing it in a little bit of olive oil, salt, and pepper. And now for the kale. Kale has become quite popular these days, and there’s a reason why kale is considered a “superfood.” Those richly deep green leaves are packed with all kinds of nutrition, making the leafy green quite hearty. And the combination of these two ingredients are not only amazing in flavor, but also beautiful to serve. Golden cubes of slightly sweet butternut squash tossed with rich dark green kale leaves is a treat for the eyes as well as our tastebuds.
We serve this with a really simple balsamic vinaigrette dressing poured over the top. This is really more of a warm side dish than it is a salad, and it’s quite hearty. A plate or bowlful of this beautiful salad is a hearty and healthy side dish, or even a meal when we toss it with some toasted walnuts, maybe a few cranberries, even adding a protein, like chicken. For any salad detractors that might sit at your dinner table, our roasted butternut and kale salad will soon have them convinced that a salad is a meal (or at the very least a delicious side dish)!
Roasted Butternut Squash and Kale Salad
Serves 4 cups kale, rough chopped
- 3 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubed
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Grated parmesan cheese, garnish
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Coat lightly with cooking spray.
- Toss butternut squash cubes with 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Spread squash cubes evenly over the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until squash is slightly caramelized. Remove from oven.
- Toss chopped kale with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Spread kale evenly over the butternut squash and return to the oven to bake for 8-10 minutes or until kale has started to soften..
- Transfer kale and squash to a serving dish. Mix the dressing ingredients and drizzle over top. Toss the salad then top with shaved parmesan.
Recipe adapted from Do You Even Paleo.