Caramelized pear, butternut squash and arugula salad - a fall-inspired salad featuring caramelized pears, roasted butternut squash, peppery arugula, quinoa, goat cheese and a ginger cider dressing. Fall in a bowl!
Fall is upon us and I’m thrilled. Crunching leaves, sweaters, soups and of course everything pumpkin spice. I’ve been enjoying the bounty of fall with hearty soups, butternut squash, apples and carrots. We’ve been enjoying fall walks, colorful hikes and plenty of tea.
Though I love hearty fall soups and stews, sometimes it’s nice to have a hearty fall salad. And this one is literally fall in a bowl. It’s vegetarian, gluten-free and ready in under an hour. Packed with all the fall goodness your heart could desire.
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Ready to make this Caramelized Pear, Butternut Squash and Arugula Salad? Let’s do it!
1 - Prep. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Peel and dice the butternut squash. I usually chop the ends off and peel using a vegetable peeler. Then cut the squash in half and cut each half in half again. Scoop out the seeds and dice the squash. Save the seeds and roast them for a crunchy snack!
2 - Roast the chickpeas. Drain and rinse the chickpeas and pat them dry with a towel. Then spread them on a lined baking sheet and coat them one tablespoon olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast them for 30-40 minutes.
3 - Roast the squash. Combine butternut squash, two tablespoons of olive oil, and one tablespoon honey in a large bowl. Stir until the squash is well coated and transfer to a lined baking sheet. Spread out the squash in a single layer and roast for about 25 minutes or until the squash is fork tender. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly.
4 - Cook the quinoa. Rinse the quinoa using a fine mesh strainer and combine with broth in a small pot. Bring to a boil and let simmer about 20 minutes or until quinoa has “popped” open and is tender. Drain any excess liquid, remove from heat and cool slightly.
5 - Caramelize pears. Heat a medium skillet over medium heat and add one tablespoon olive oil and one tablespoon honey. Add pears, and cook until they start browning, about 5 minutes. Flip and brown the other side. Remove from heat.
6 - Prepare dressing. Combine all dressing ingredients in a small bowl or jar and whisk or shake until combined.
7 - Serve. In a large bowl, combine arugula, crispy chickpeas, roasted butternut squash, quinoa, caramelized pears and dressing. Garnish with pepitas and goat cheese. Enjoy!
Caramelized Pear, Butternut Squash and Arugula Salad: Tips, Tricks and Tools
Prep ahead: The squash can be roasted and the quinoa can be cooked and saved up to three days before serving the salad (a great make-ahead salad for the holidays!)
Save the seeds and roast them to make a crunchy Roasted Squash Seed snack.
Variations: You can use a different winter squash like acorn or kabocha. Use spinach or kale instead of arugula and farro instead of quinoa. Even try using pecans instead of pepitas.
We hope you love this Caramelized Pear, Butternut Squash and Arugula Salad!
- A quintessential fall salad
- Vegetarian (easily made vegan), gluten-free and ready in under an hour
- Great as a main salad dish or a perfect side salad
Did you enjoy this Caramelized Pear, Butternut Squash and Arugula Salad as much as we do?
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"Happiness is reality minus expectations." - Tom Magliozzi
Caramelized Pear, Butternut Squash & Arugula Salad
- 2 (15 ounce) cans chickpeas drained and rinsed
- 4 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 1 butternut squash (medium) peeled + diced
- 2 tablespoons honey divided
- 1 cup quinoa rinsed
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 2 pears cut into ¼ inch slices
- 2 bunches arugula 6-8 cups
- goat cheese for garnish
- pepitas for garnish
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- ¼ red onion finely diced
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1 ½ inch knob ginger grated
- 1 clove garlic (large) minced
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- ¼ cup olive oil
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- To roast chickpeas: Drain and rinse chickpeas, place on a lined baking sheet, coat with 1 tablespoon olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast for 30-40 minutes or until crispy.
- To roast squash: Combine butternut squash, 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 tablespoon honey in a large bowl, stir until the squash is well coated. Spread squash out on a lined baking sheet and roast, 25 min or until squash is tender. Remove and let cool slightly.
- To cook quinoa: Combine quinoa and broth in a small pot and bring to a boil, let simmer about 20 minutes or until quinoa has “popped” open and is tender. Remove from heat and cool slightly.
- To caramelize pears: Heat a medium-size skillet over medium heat, add one tablespoon olive oil and one tablespoon honey. Add pears and cook until they are slightly brown, about 5 minutes. Flip to the other side and let brown.
- To prepare dressing: Combine apple cider vinegar, red onion, dijon mustard, honey, ginger, garlic, turmeric and crushed red pepper in a small jar or bowl. Whisk in olive oil or add to jar and shake until well combined.
- Serve: In a large bowl, combine crispy chickpeas, roasted butternut squash, cooked quinoa, caramelized pears and arugula. Garnish with pepitas, and goat cheese and pour over dressing just before serving. Enjoy!
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