Warm Roasted Butternut Squash + Farro Salad
I’ve teamed up with Dole Packaged Foods to bring you a delicious warm roasted butternut squash and farro salad full of nature’s bounty — eggplant, chickpeas, pomegranate seeds, walnuts, and California dates.
I used to think I didn’t like salads.
Salads represented cold, tasteless, lifeless diet food that I would begrudgingly force myself to eat in college in an attempt to outweigh the effects of weekends full of Bud Light and delivery pizzas.
In recent years though, around the time when I ditched the notion that a healthy diet requires you to avoid carbs, I came around to salads, realizing that a salad bowl is really a blank canvas to create your ultimate veggie-packed dish.
With all traditional salad rules out the window and a “more is better” mentality, I now get excited to concoct elaborate bowls full of delicious ingredients like fruit, grains, beans, and seeds.
And temperature? That’s a flexible measure as well. Cold salads on chilly winter days are a thing of the past for me.
I created this warm Roasted Butternut Squash + Farro Salad to celebrate the bounty of fruits and vegetables we have here in Southern California.
Featuring warm roasted butternut squash and eggplant, this salad is both nutritious and oh so comforting on these cool winter days.
Crispy sauteed chickpeas and hearty whole-grain farro add belly-filling fiber and plant-based protein.
The Dole California dates and pomegranate seeds add a burst of sweetness to the otherwise savory blend, and walnuts contribute crunch and heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.
This 100% plant-based salad provides the perfect balance of complex carbs, protein, and fat while also serving up major flavor. It makes an excellent main dish or festive side to bring to holiday gatherings.
I also created a fun, non-alcoholic holiday “mocktail” for my mommies-to-be who, like me, will be forgoing the bubbly this year.
This Pineapple Pomegranate Spritzer is sweet, effervescent, and so easy to make. Using Dole 100% Pineapple Juice, sparkling water, and leftover pomegranate seeds from your salad, this refreshing sip will ensure you don’t miss out on any celebratory toasts.
- 4 cups butternut squash, cubed
- 1 small eggplant, cubed
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 3 cups farro, cooked
- 1 lemon, juiced
- salt and pepper
- ½ cup pomegranate seeds
- ½ cup Dole California dates, chopped
- ½ cup walnuts, chopped
- ¼ cup parsley, chopped
- Preheat oven to 400.
- Toss butternut squash and eggplant with 2 teaspoons olive oil. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 25-30 minutes, tossing halfway through.
- Heat 1 teaspoon olive oil in a medium-sized pan. Add chickpeas and saute until browned, about 3-4 minutes.
- Combine squash, eggplant, chickpeas, farro, pomegranate seeds, dates, walnuts, and parsley in a large bowl.
- Toss with lemon juice.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- ½ cup sparkling water
- ¼ cup Dole 100% pineapple juice
- 1 tablespoon pomegranate juice
- 1 tablespoon pomegranate seeds
- Combine all ingredients in a glass.
Like this salad, which highlights the plethora of delicious produce grown in California, Dole is celebrating their passion for nutritious, delicious food with their 2018 Rose Parade Float, aptly themed “Sharing Nature’s Bounty.”
The float, which will feature thousands of flowers, animatronic animals, and a waterfall, was created in partnership with Feeding America and goes hand in hand with the Tournament of Roses’ Parade theme, “Making a Difference.”
Dole is committed to making a difference by providing convenient, healthy, non-GMO food to people nationwide, year-round, while also working to protect the environment and increase sustainability.
Make sure to tune in on New Year’s Day at 8 a.m. PST to see their beautiful float in the Rose Parade! It will air on ABC, NBC, HGTV, The Hallmark Channel, KTLA 5, and Univision.
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Weigh in: What are your favorite salad mix-ins? Will you be watching the Rose Parade this New Year’s Day?