Butternut Squash Quinoa Salad

Oh hayyyyy fall. I see you slowly creeping in with your cool breezes and your cinnamon scent. Stop by and stay a while, especially if you come with this butternut squash quinoa salad.

We had a quiet weekend at home last weekend and with the unpredictable weather in Idaho (it’s fall! It’s summer! It’s SNOWING! What) I was craving something roasted and fall-like. Cue all the butternut squash.

This roasted butternut squash quinoa salad is so chock-full of fall flavor! The sauteed onions blended into the dressing are the perfect layer of flavor. Plus, the dressing also has maple syrup and apple cider vinegar, giving it a sweet and savory kick! The whole thing is finished off with toasted nuts that are technically optional, but I highly recommend.

butternut squash quinoa salad

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Butternut Squash Quinoa Salad
butternut squash quinoa salad
Course Sides
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Sides
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings
servings
Ingredients
butternut squash quinoa salad
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425˚F.
  2. Cook quinoa according to package directions. Set aside.
  3. Peel and cube butternut squash. Toss in 1 tbsp olive oil and salt + pepper to taste. Spread onto a baking sheet lined with foil (for easy cleanup) and bake for 40-45 minutes, until fork-tender and golden brown. Make sure to toss/turn squash every 15-20 minutes for even cooking.
  4. While squash is baking, add 1 tsp olive oil to a pan and warm over medium heat. Sauté onions for 5-10 minutes or until translucent + slightly browned. (Note: I prefer my onions a little brown for a roasted flavor, but you can stop cooking them whenever you want!)
  5. Combine cooked onions, apple cider vinegar, 1/4 cup olive oil, and maple syrup in a blender and puree until smooth. Set aside.
  6. Reheat the pan from the onions over low-medium heat. Chop walnuts and add to pan, cooking for 3-4 minutes until toasted (you'll smell it!).
  7. Add quinoa, roasted squash, and dressing to the pan with walnuts. Stir to combine. Serve warm.
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butternut squash quinoa salad with roasted chicken and sauteed kale

I highly recommend serving this with some grilled chicken and greens! We rubbed some kale and arugula with a little olive oil and a dash of apple cider vinegar for the perfect pairing. This salad also kept super well in the fridge and made for high-quality leftovers! I ate it cold straight out of the container, and reheated some to top with runny eggs for breakfast. It really is the perfect combo of flavors and therefore the perfect base or side for everything!

Note: this is a hands-on recipe and does use a lot of dishes (always something I’m considering)! It’s completely worth the trouble, but make sure you do have 45-60 minutes to dedicate to mixing it all up! There’s not a lot of passive time with this one.

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