Sometimes the craving for salad strikes all year round. This delicata squash salad is filled with flavor and bold ingredients such as pomegranate seeds and vegan feta, making it a perfect centerpiece or side dish.
6 cups of kale (or favorite greens, mix and match)—about 1 bunch curly kale
1 delicata squash (follow WOV Simple Roasted Squash recipe)
1 apple (choose favorite – Honeycrisp, Gala, Fuji or Granny Smith)
1¼ cup of pomegranate seeds
⅓ cup of pecans
⅓ cup of vegan feta cheese (Violife)
Optional: ¼ cup of roasted squash seeds (follow WOV recipe)
Optional: ½-1 cup of cooked grains such as farro, wheatberries, or quinoa
Tangy Apple Cinnamon Vinaigrette
2 tablespoons of apple cider or apple juice
2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon of maple syrup
½ teaspoon of Dijon mustard
¼ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
¼ cup olive or avocado oil
salt & pepper to taste
- Prepare delicata squash following recipe (prepare roasted squash seeds if using)
- While the squash is cooking, prepare the vinaigrette by whisking all ingredients together, set aside.
- Wash, dry and de-stem kale (greens). Roughly chop kale into bite size pieces. Add to a large bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of prepared vinaigrette to chopped kale and gently massage with your hands until leaves begin to soften, about 1-2 minutes.
- Chop apple into desired size & shape.
- Seed pomegranate.
- Add the roasted squash, diced apple, pecans, pomegranate and vegan feta to the greens. Drizzle 1 tbsp of vinaigrette and toss well to combine.
- Serve with the remaining vinaigrette on the side for individual use. Optional garnish with roasted squash
- For a heartier meal, add cooked grains to the salad such as quinoa, farro or wheatberry.
Vegan Cheese: The feta is optional but adds a nice balance to the salad flavors. You can substitute with other store- bought vegan cheese options that are neutral in flavor like many of the cheese wheels from Miyoko’s or Treeline. If you are feeling adventurous you could also make your own cheese from scratch. A blue cheese or gouda would work well in this salad. Crumble or roughly chop as you would the feta.
Vinaigrette: Vinaigrettes are made to be adjustable. If you want it sweeter, add more maple syrup. Less acidic, add more oil or reduce vinegar. Play with it and have fun. Store any leftover vinaigrette in an air-tight container for 1-2 weeks in the refrigerator.
Pecans: Pecans pair great with fall fruits and vegetables, but if they aren’t your favorite you could substitute with walnuts, hazelnuts, pistachios or almonds. If you want you can also toast your nuts by roasting them for a few minutes in the oven until they just start to brown. Watch closely though as they can burn fast.
This salad works great for Thanksgiving or any time you want a tasty salad. If you are making for Thanksgiving (or any other busy cooking holiday or get-together) you can make this in advance to make your life easier. Prepare the recipe as described, with two minor adjustments. Chop up the apple at the last minute prior to serving, so that the apple does not brown in advance of serving. Once you add the apple, then add the vinaigrette and toss to combine.
Keywords: squash, fresh, meat-free, autumn, winter, fall, delicata, kale, Thanksgiving, salad, plant-based, dairy-free, healthy