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Fall Salad with Butternut Squash, Arugula, Dried Figs, and Almonds

If you’re looking for a simple Fall salad that uses seasonal Autumn fruit and vegetables, you’ve found the right recipe! Made with roasted Butternut squash, dried figs, toasted almonds, and arugula, this healthy salad features an easy-to-make Balsamic vinaigrette as a dressing and is decorated with pomegranate arils and fresh thyme.

Fall Salad with Butternut Squash, Arugula, Dried Figs, and Almonds in a white bowl

Fall salad with seasonal fruit and veggies

What makes a perfect Fall salad?  Of course, using Fall vegetables and fruits.  In this recipe, I use the ultimate Autumn vegetable, roasted butternut squash, as one of the main ingredients.  The salad also features classic Fall fruit, such as figs and pomegranate arils.  The salad is finished with toasted, thinly sliced almonds and fresh thyme.  The end result is a gorgeous, colorful salad that is cozy, warm, and inviting as Autumn itself.

If you like the vibrancy and colors of this recipe, make sure to check out my other very popular Autumn salad: Butternut Squash and Spinach Salad with Pecans, Cranberries, Pomegranate Seeds, and Poppy Seed Honey-Lime Dressing.  You will have a hard time deciding which salad between these two you will like the best!

Fall ingredients

This recipe uses seasonal ingredients, such as Autumn vegetables (butternut squash) and Fall fruit (figs and pomegranate).  It can be hard to find these ingredients outside of the Fall season, so use them now, in this salad!  For greens, I used arugula, but you can also use spinach or another popular Fall ingredient, kale!  The salad is also sprinkled with fresh thyme.

Fall Salad with Butternut Squash, Arugula, Dried Figs, and Almonds in a white bowl

Simple to make

This is one of those salads that is super easy to make even though it looks sophisticated enough to serve a company.  The only time-consuming part is roasting the butternut squash but this can be done a day or 3 days in advance.  Once you have roasted the butternut squash, the salad takes only 20 minutes to assemble!

Great for leftovers

Because this salad is packed with so many nutritious ingredients, you can serve this as a side dish with a Fall meal, such as this creamy ground turkey pasta with butternut squash and spinach, or with a delicious autumn chicken dinner.

Or, just serve this Autumn salad on its own for lunch.  The salad keeps well refrigerated for up to 3 days (even with the dressing mixed in!), so it’s great to use the next day as lunch or snack!

Can you make it ahead and how to store it

If you do want to make this salad ahead, do not add salad dressing until you’re ready to serve.  Refrigerate the combined salad ingredients in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

How to make the best Fall salad

The best Fall salad should feature seasonal fruits and vegetables that are available or popular only during the Fall.  This is what makes this salad so special.   Let’s look at the ingredients that go into this salad:

  • Roasted Butternut Squash.  This is the only time-consuming part of the recipe, but it can also be done 1 or 3 days in advance.  Butternut squash is the ultimate Fall vegetable and can be hard to find outside of its growing season.
  • Arugula.  Arugula is a delicious and beautiful vegetable with a peppery, almost mustardy flavor that is a bit spicy.  It is a perfect choice of green for a Fall salad.  You can also use spinach or kale instead.
  • Dried Figs.  This fruit is a classic Fall ingredient, and its sweetness fits perfectly with the butternut squash and the peppery taste of arugula.
  • Pomegranate.  Sprinkle the salad with the ultimate Autumn fruit, the pomegranate seeds (or arils).  They add tangy and sweet flavor as well as create a beautiful presentation.
  • Toasted almonds.  Lightly toasted sliced almonds add crunch and nutty flavor to this Autumn salad.
  • Fresh thyme.  Just a small amount of this fresh herb adds a lot of flavor to the salad.
  • Simple balsamic vinaigrette.  To keep everything simple, the salad is dressed with a basic homemade balsamic vinaigrette made with just 2 ingredients: Balsamic vinegar and olive oil.  Both, preferably, should be of really high quality.

close-up of Fall Salad with Butternut Squash, Arugula, Dried Figs, and Almonds

How to roast butternut squash

  1. First, make sure you have peeled, seeded, and cubed butternut squash.  Toss it with olive oil, salt, and ground black pepper in a large bowl.
  2. If you want to know everything about how to peel, seed, and cube butternut squash – check out my very detailed basic recipe for roasted butternut squash.
  3. Spread the squash on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet in one layer, without overcrowding.
  4. Roast on the middle rack in the preheated oven at 400 F for about 20 or 30 minutes. Remove from oven.

Other Fall salads

Fall Salad with Butternut Squash, Arugula, Dried Figs, and Almonds in a white bowl

Fall Salad with Butternut Squash, Figs, Pomegranate, and Arugula

If you’re looking for a simple Fall salad that features seasonal Autumn fruit and vegetables, you’ve found the right recipe! Made with roasted Butternut squash, dried figs, toasted almonds, and arugula, this healthy salad features an easy-to-make Balsamic vinaigrette as a dressing and is decorated with pomegranate arils and fresh thyme.

Prep Time 30 mins

Cook Time 30 mins

Total Time 1 hr

Course Salad

Cuisine American, Mediterranean

Servings 4 people

Calories per serving 271 kcal

Author: Julia

Ingredients

Roasted Butternut Squash

  • 2 cups butternut squash peeled, seeded, cubed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

Fall salad

  • 5 oz arugula
  • cup dried figs sliced
  • ¼ cup almonds sliced, lightly toasted
  • ¼ cup pomegranate arils
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme

Instructions 

How to roast butternut squash

  • Preheat oven to 400 F.

  • Make sure the butternut squash is peeled, seeded, and cubed. For more details, take a look at this recipe on how to peel, seed, cube, and roast butternut squash.
  • In a medium bowl, toss cubed butternut squash with olive oil, salt, and pepper.

  • Spread the squash on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet in one layer, without overcrowding.

  • Roast on the middle rack in the preheated oven at 400 F for about 20 or 30 minutes. Remove from oven.

Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • In a small bowl, make the balsamic vinaigrette by whisking together Balsamic vinegar with olive oil until emulsified.

  • Tip: see the recipe notes below to review my recommendations about the best balsamic vinegar to use.

Fall Salad

  • In a large bowl, combine arugula with roasted butternut squash. Add sliced dried figs, lightly toasted sliced almonds (see recipe notes below), and pomegranate arils.

  • Drizzle with the Balsamic Vinaigrette – you do not need to use the whole amount. Just a touch. Toss to combine.

  • Top with fresh thyme.

Notes

  • How to toast almonds.  Toast almonds on the parchment paper-lined baking sheet in the preheated oven at 350 F for 7 or 10 minutes until golden-brown color.
  • Use high-quality balsamic vinegar.  I prefer to use a high-quality balsamic vinegar that has a much thicker (almost syrupy texture) and is not as acidic as the regular one.  I use the balsamic vinegar labeled as Aceto Balsamico I.G.P. produced in Italy.  Balsamic vinegar  labeled as Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale D.O.P. is also a great choice.  They are more expensive but worth the price!
  • Use high-quality olive oil.  I prefer to use extra virgin olive oil, labeled as “first cold-pressed”,  packaged in a dark bottle.  Such olive oil usually has a distinctive peppery or fruity taste and is flavorful enough to use as a salad dressing ingredient.

Nutrition

Nutrition Information

Fall Salad with Butternut Squash, Figs, Pomegranate, and Arugula

Amount per Serving

% Daily Value*

Saturated Fat

Trans Fat

Polyunsaturated Fat

Monounsaturated Fat

Potassium

Carbohydrates

Vitamin A

Vitamin C

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed. It should not be used as a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Keyword autumn salad, fall salad, fall salad with butternut squash

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