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Healthy Fall Salad

The Protein-Packed, Butternut Squash Salad of Our Dreams

Given the cooler temps, salads may seem oddly out of fashion for Fall. Not so when it comes to this filling, colorful, and seasonal salad from Thistle, a meal-delivery service that I am currently obsessed with. While it's an extra expense, I've been eating healthier than ever before and am trying a variety of fresh produce I wouldn't normally cook. This salad is a perfect example of that. I never get around to roasting butternut squash at home, but after trying this salad, it's become a mainstay in my kitchen. As a whole, the entire meal is full of seasonal flavors and the right amount of crunchy texture, and the dressing is to die for. Trust me when I say that you will be adding sage to everything.

It's also just good for you and incredibly filling. At just over 400 calories, it's packed with 15 grams of protein and 16 grams of fiber. I was so satisfied after eating this, I didn't even need my usual midafternoon snack.

Fall Farmers Market Salad

From Thistle


To roast butternut squash, cut into 1/2-inch cubes and drizzle with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Roast at 400°F for 10 minutes, or until golden brown and soft in the center.

Healthy Fall Salad


  1. For the salad:
    2 tablespoons pecans
    4 cups loosely packed greens (baby kale, baby spinach, arugula, or mixed greens all work nicely)
    1/2 cup carrots, shredded
    1/2 cup fennel, shaved, plus 2 tablespoons fennel fronds for garnish
    2/3 cup seedless red grapes, halved
    2/3 cup roasted butternut squash
    1 cup cooked wild rice
    1 cup cooked gigante beans (If using canned beans, strain from their liquid and season lightly with salt and pepper)
    1 tablespoon dried cranberries
  1. For the pickled red onions:
    1/4 cup red onion
    1 tablespoon sugar
    1 tablespoon salt
    1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  1. For the apple cider and sage vinaigrette:
    2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
    1 teaspoon finely chopped sage
    1 teaspoon dijon
    1 garlic clove, minced
    Salt and pepper to taste
    1 tablespoon olive oil


  1. Make your dressing. Whisk the minced garlic clove, dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar, sage, and a pinch of salt and pepper in a small bowl. Slowly pour in your olive oil, whisking until emulsified. Set aside.
  2. Pickle your red onion. Slice the red onion into 1/4-inch pieces. Stir the sugar and salt into apple cider vinegar. Let red onion sit in solution for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Drain.
  3. Make the salad. Toast pecans at 400°F for 5 minutes, or until aromatic. Toss together mixed greens, butternut squash, carrots, fennel, grapes, wild rice, and gigante beans; drizzle with vinaigrette to taste. Top with dried cranberries, toasted pecans, and fennel fronds. Serve and enjoy!


Calories per serving
Image Source: Thistle
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