Brace yourselves for THE BEST fall/winter salad on the internet! This Easy Vegan Roasted Butternut Squash and Cranberry Salad truly blew me away! If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know that I don’t make salads too often, but when I do they have to be amazing and this one is no different!
This easy vegan fall/winter salad uses RightRice as its base, tossed with roasted butternut squash and cranberries, then topped with a simple red wine vinaigrette that’s the icing on the cake! It really takes this salad to the next level!
Roasted Butternut Squash and Cranberry Salad Ingredients
To make this easy vegan Roasted Butternut Squash and Cranberry Salad, you’ll just need a few ingredients, most of which you probably already have on hand:
- Original RightRice
- Fresh Butternut Squash
- Red Onion
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Dried Cranberries
Red Wine Vinaigrette:
- Olive Oil
- Red Wine Vinegar
- Maple Syrup
- Dijon Mustard
- Garlic Powder
- Salt & Pepper
How to Make this Roasted Butternut Squash and Cranberry Salad
To make this delicious salad, you’ll want to start by preparing your RightRice so that it’s ready when you need it. One of the things I love about using RightRice is that it’s the perfect rice alternative that has great texture. Not to mention, it is SUPER easy to cook! If you’re one of those people who have always struggled with cooking rice, this is for you!
RightRice is also made from plants (90% lentils, chickpeas and peas) and packed with veggies in every bite. It’s got 2x the protein, 5x the fiber, and almost 40% fewer net carbs than a bowl of white rice.
To make the RightRice all you need to do is bring 1⅓ cups of water to a boil over the stove, remove it from the heat once boiling, add the Right Rice and cover it with a lid. After about 10 minutes it’s ready, but we don’t need it quite yet so simply set it aside.
Now it’s time to prepare the remaining ingredients. Let’s start with the butternut squash, shall we? I don’t know about you, but butternut squash has never been one of my favorite things to prepare. For this recipe, I took the easy way out and purchased pre-cut butternut squash.
Can’t find any? It’s all good. You can definitely purchase a whole butternut squash and chop it up yourself. Here’s how:
- Begin by microwaving the butternut squash for about 30-45 seconds. This will help to soften it up a bit.
- Use a sharp knife to slice off both ends, then grab a vegetable peeler to remove the outer skin.
- Cut the squash in half lengthwise, then grab a spoon to remove the seeds from the middle.
- Cut the squash in half again, this time horizontally to make four chunks. Then slice each of the chunks lengthwise about ¾ to 1 inch thick to create strips.
- From here, you’re ready to slice each piece into cubes.
Once the squash is cut, it’s time to roast it. Measure out about 2½ cups, place them on a baking pan lined with parchment paper, drizzle them with olive oil, then sprinkle them with a little salt and pepper. Transfer them to your preheated oven and roast for about 20-25 minutes on 400°.
While the butternut squash is cooking, you can begin preparing your other ingredients like dicing the red onion, measuring out the pumpkin seeds, dried cranberries, and walnuts.
Once the butternut squash is done, allow them to cool for 10 minutes or so. Once they’re cooled enough, add all of the salad ingredients (RightRice, roasted butternut squash, red onion, pumpkin seeds, dried cranberries, and walnuts) to a large bowl appropriate for tossing a salad. Then top with your red wine vinaigrette. BOOM! You’re done.
How to Make the Red Wine Vinaigrette
If you’re new to making homemade dressing and nervous about “doing it right” don’t be! This Red Wine Vinaigrette is easy peasy, made with just 5 ingredients and can be adjusted to suite your taste.
To make this vinaigrette, simply add all of the ingredients to a small bowl and whisk them together until everything is combined. Don’t have any red wine vinegar? You can also sub for balsamic vinegar instead.
Is This Dish Best Served Hot or Cold?
This is completely up to you! I think it just depends on what you’re in the mood for. My favorite is actually more room temperature. A nice happy medium between the two. However, my husband prefers it to be served warm. Ultimately the choice is yours!
Can This Salad Be Prepped in Advance?
You can absolutely prep this Roasted Butternut Squash and Cranberry Salad in advance! If you’re going to do this, I would suggest adding in the walnuts in on the day you intend to eat it and reserving a little of the dressing so you can add a fresh coating of it just before serving.
The remaining ingredients should be able to keep well in the fridge for 3-4 days.
How to Store this Roasted Butternut Squash and Cranberry Salad
To store this salad, you’ll want to place it in an airtight container to maintain its freshness. This salad will last in the fridge for 3-4 days.
Additional Ingredients You Could Add:
Wanna make this Roasted Butternut Squash and Cranberry Salad your own? In addition to the ingredients already included, feel free to add in some other ingredients to really give this salad that extra bang! Below are a few suggestions:
- Wilted fresh spinach
- Spring mix salad
- Even more cranberries
- Vegan feta crumbles
- Diced apples
I know you’ll love this Roasted Butternut Squash and Cranberry Salad! It’s the perfect fall/winter salad that you’ll want to enjoy all year round. It’s both savory and sweet (my favorite combination), plus it’s super easy to make. Give it a try and let me know what you think in the comments below!
Tools You Might Need:
Other Salads You Might Enjoy:
- Easy Avocado Black Bean and Corn Salad
- Asian Sesame Grilled Tofu Salad
- Vegan Tuna Pasta Salad
- Taco Pasta Salad
- Lentil Taco Salad
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This post was sponsored by the wonderful people over at RightRice! Thank you for supporting the brands that support me!
Easy Vegan Roasted Butternut Squash and Cranberry Salad
- 1 package Original RightRice (results in 2½ cups cooked)
- 2½ cups fresh butternut squash diced into 1 inch pieces
- olive oil to taste
- salt and pepper to taste
- ¼ cup small diced red onion
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
- raw walnuts to taste
- chopped green onion for garnish optional
Red Wine Vinaigrette
- ½ cup olive oil
- ⅓ cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tsp organic maple syrup
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- Cook the RightRice according to the package ingredients. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 400°
- Place the diced butternut squash on a baking pan lined with parchment paper and drizzle with olive oil to taste, then sprinkle with desired amount of salt and pepper. Bake for 20-25 minutes rotating about halfway through.
- While the butternut squash is cooking, begin prepping the remaining salad ingredients by placing them in a large bowl appropriate for combining everything.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the dressing. Set aside.
- Once the butternut squash is finished cooking, remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes or so.
- Add the RightRice and roasted butternut squash to the large bowl along with the other salad ingredients.
- Drizzle generously with the dressing to taste (may not need the entire amount) and use a large spoon to combine all of the salad components.
- Garnish with green onion (optional). Enjoy!