One bite of this Butternut Squash and Pomegranate Kale Salad with Spiced Honey Walnuts and you’ll be addicted.
How’s that for a recipe title? It may be long, but every word in that title is absolutely necessary. Right down to the spiced honey walnuts. Mmmmm.
I thought I was done posting recipes that you might want to make for Thanksgiving, but then I made this salad and knew you had to have the recipe right away. Whether you make this salad for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or simply lunch one day, I know you’ll love it as much as we do! I’m planning to make it again for Christmas dinner, if not before.
I photographed this salad yesterday, when it was dark, gloomy and rainy outside. Which was perfect because then we got to enjoy this salad with our Sunday dinner of soup and homemade rolls. <– Right there I linked to a few of my favorite recipes, both of which we make over and over this time of year.
The flavors of this healthy kale salad are those that we crave during fall and winter. Kale salads are some of my favorites because they keep well for a few days in the refrigerator. I’ve included make ahead instructions for this salad in the recipe below, in case you want to make it for weekday lunches or get a head start on your holiday meal prep.
Let’s talk about the parts of this Butternut Squash and Pomegranate Kale Salad. First, the butternut squash. You’ll roast your squash until it’s soft and slightly caramelized on some of the edges. With a sprinkle of salt and pepper, it’s perfection.
Then there’s the fresh kale and pomegranate seeds. The pomegranate seeds add a little crunch and a sweet-tart bite. Be sure to visit this post before washing your kale. It will save you time!
The spiced honey walnuts are my favorite part of this salad. They take less than 10 minutes to make, and are highly addictive! I had to eat a few warm from the pan, and I know you’ll want to do the same. 😉
For the dressing, I made a simple maple vinaigrette using pure maple syrup, apple cider vinegar and olive oil. It takes just a minute and you can even make extra to save for salads later in the week.
The finishing touch on this salad is creamy, tangy goat cheese. Yum!
This is likely my last post before the Thanksgiving holiday, so I want to wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving! I hope your week is filled with good food and time spent with family and friends. I’ll be back on Friday with an easy staple recipe that you’ll find very handy this holiday season.
- 1 small butternut squash cut into ½-inch pieces (4 cups)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons cup honey
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup walnuts
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- 6 cups washed, chopped kale
- seeds from 1 pomegranate
- 4 ounces goat cheese
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Place the squash in a 9x13-inch baking dish. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Roast squash for about 30 minutes, gently stirring every 10 minutes until tender. Remove from oven and let cool.
- Place butter in a small nonstick skillet and melt over low heat. Whisk in the honey, cinnamon, cayenne and salt. Add the walnuts and increase the heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes until nuts are caramelized and lightly toasted. Remove from heat and let cool.
- Combine all dressing ingredients in a bowl and whisk together. (Or combine in a mason jar and shake with the lid on to mix.)
- Place the washed, chopped kale in a large bowl. Add the roasted butternut squash, pomegranate seeds, goat cheese and walnuts. Pour over the dressing and toss gently to combine.