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Maple-Roasted Delicata Squash Salad with Goat Cheese & Pomegranate Seeds

This easy but stunning salad features half moons of maple-Dijon roasted delicata squash, sweet-tart pomegranate seeds, toasted nuts, creamy goat cheese and bitter greens. A quick maple balsamic dressing ties it all together. It’s the perfect mix of flavors and textures and makes for a gorgeous first course to a holiday meal, or a satisfying main course when paired with a rotisserie chicken. If you can’t find delicata squash, swap it out for cubed butternut squash. Also, feel free to use shaved Parmigiano or Pecorino in place of the goat cheese (or leave it out altogether!). Dried cranberries or cherries are a good alternative to the pomegranate seeds.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: roasted delicata squash, salad for holidays, squash salad
Servings: 6
Author: Nicki Sizemore

Ingredients

Squash

  • 1 1-1 ½ pound Delicata squash
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Dressing

  • 1 tablespoon minced shallot (about ½ small shallot)
  • 1 garlic clove, finely grated
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

Salad

  • Mixed greens, such as baby mustard, arugula, spinach, radicchio, escarole, mizuna and/or mache, torn into bite-sized pieces if large
  • Crumbled goat cheese
  • Chopped toasted hazelnuts or pecans
  • Pomegranate seeds

Instructions

Roast the Squash

  • Preheat the oven to 400˚F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Cut off both ends of the squash then cut the squash in half lengthwise. Scrape out and discard the seeds. Cut the squash into ½-inch slices and transfer them to a large bowl. Add the olive oil, maple syrup and Dijon mustard, and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat (I find it’s best to use my hands for this!).
  • Arrange the squash in a single layer on the baking sheet and roast for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly golden on the bottom. Carefully flip the slices over and continue to roast for 5-10 minutes, or until golden around the edges and tender. Nudge each slice gently to ensure that it doesn’t stick to the pan (you can leave them on the pan).

Make the Dressing

  • Meanwhile, in a small bowl or jar, whisk together the shallots, garlic, Dijon, maple syrup, balsamic vinegar and a pinch of salt and pepper. Let sit 5-10 minutes to let the flavors infuse. Slowly whisk in the extra virgin olive oil (or shake it all up in a jar).

Assemble the Salad

  • To serve, in a large bowl, toss the greens with just enough dressing to coat (you might not need all of the dressing). Arrange the greens on a large platter or on individual plates. Place the squash slices on top of the greens and drizzle with a bit more dressing. Sprinkle with goat cheese, toasted nuts and pomegranate seeds.

Notes

  • The squash can be roasted up to 6 hours ahead and left at room temperature.
  • The dressing can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.