23/02/2024

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Autumn Squash and Pomegranate Salad

Autumn Squash and Pomegranate Salad

Looking for a taste of fall in a bowl? Give this simple Autumn Squash and Pomegranate Salad a go for your next meal prepped lunch or family dinner. It’s packed with healthy and nutrient-rich ingredients, leaving you full and satisfied.

When it comes to salads, I want to leave the meal feeling both mentally AND physically satisfied. This means a boring baked chicken breast over a bed of spring mix with veggies just won’t cut it. I crave flavor, texture, a balance of macronutrients… and this Autumn Squash and Pomegranate salad has all of the above!

In my kitchen, every salad needs…

  • A complex carbohydrate that provides long lasting energy. Think chickpeas or beans, roasted purple or russet potatoes, a scoop of cooked farro, and beets.
  • Something crunchy like crisp fruit or veggies, whole wheat croutons, or sunflower seeds. In a southwest salad, some tortilla strips hit the spot!
  • Flavorful fats, such as a homemade vinaigrette, avocado, candied pecans, marinated artichoke, or a robust cheese such as feta or parmesan. 
  • A plant or animal protein, such as beans, meat, or eggs. A filet of salmon does the trick in a niçoise salad while chickpea pasta checks that protein box in this Protein-Packed Thai Peanut Pasta Salad.

I give myself bonus points if I use seasonal ingredients in my recipes. Since it’s November, I decided to utilize some of my favorite fall flavors for this Autumn Squash and Pomegranate Salad.

Watch how I make this salad on TikTok!

Autumn Squash and Pomegranate Salad

Servings: 4

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 40 minutes

Ingredients:

Salad:

  • 1 squash (I used an acorn squash but butternut or delicata would work well) 
  • 1 rotisserie chicken, shredded
  • Olive oil
  • 1 bunch of curly kale
  • 1 green apple, diced
  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds
  • ½ cup goat cheese
  • Salt and pepper

Balsamic Vinaigrette: 

  • ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 ½ tbsp dijon mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  • Preheat the oven to 400’ F with the cooking rack in the center.
  • Using a sharp knife, cut squash in half. Drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Place face down on a greased baking tray. Roast for 35-40 minutes. Let cool and then slice and dice squash. Set aside.
  • Meanwhile, shred rotisserie chicken. Set aside.
  • For vinaigrette, mix olive oil, balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, and salt and pepper. Set aside.
  • Remove stem from kale and chop leaves. Place in a bowl and drizzle with dressing. Massage the dressing into the kale to remove bitterness. You can always massage the kale first and add dressing later!
  • Dice 1 green apple.
  • Top kale with apple, squash, pomegranate seeds, and goat cheese. Enjoy!

Tips:

  • Use a non-slip cutting board when cutting squash.
  • I tossed the skin for the acorn squash because it was too chewy, but delicata squash skin is much more edible.
  • You can buy pre-diced butternut squash at many grocery chains. Feel free to dub squash for sweet potato!

You may also enjoy these other fall recipes:

Let us know you tried this Autumn Squash and Pomegranate Salad by posting your creation on Instagram and tagging us @nutrition.awareness!

About the author: Kait Richardson, RDN, LD, is a registered dietitian in Orlando, FL who helps yo-yo dieters break the “all-or-nothing” mindset, find balance with food, and lose weight without restricting. She does group speaking events and is the co-host of the Nutrition Awareness Podcast.

If you need help losing weight, improving your performance, or increasing your energy, schedule your initial consultation here. Not in Orlando but still need nutrition help? We also do online or over the phone consultations.