This healthy harvest salad is packed with roasted butternut squash, apples, pomegranate seeds, prosciutto, arugula, candied pecans, avocado, and a delicious homemade, tangy fall salad dressing! Topped with creamy goat cheese, this salad has all the flavors of the season & is sure to leave you feeling satisfied for hours. Naturally gluten free & grain free.

Autumn Harvest Salad win a white bowl surrounded by spoons, pomegranate seeds, pecans, and dressing

Fall. The season of colorful foliage and even more colorful food. Beautiful veggies meet hearty protein and ripened fruit. Enter, my “as beautiful as it is delicious” harvest apple salad. A flavorful mix of butternut squash, avocado, pomegranate seeds, apples, candied pecans, goat cheese, & prosciutto, atop spicy arugula salad. Tossed with maple apple cider vinaigrette, this is the salad of autumn dreams.

What Makes This Salad Work

Cozy isn’t just a feeling, it’s a flavor. And this harvest salad is exactly that. Cozy. Warm winter squash meets crisp apples meets crumbled goat cheese- bursting flavors with every bite. The sweetness of the candied pecans and the creamy avocado take this salad to a whole new level, while the prosciutto rounds it out with a salty finish. What more could you want in a salad?! This is the perfect entree salad for guests or a cozy weeknight in. You just can’t go wrong.

Ingredient Notes

goat cheese: If you are dairy free, or if you prefer no dairy, omit the goat cheese! Also, swap for feta if you don’t enjoy goat cheese.

prosciutto: This cured meat often comes in longer strips. Tear it into 2 inch pieces for optimal use in this harvest salad!

Ingredients for fall harvest salad including butternut squash, pomegranate seeds, candied pecans, prosciutto, apples, avocado, and arugula

How to Make Maple Apple Cider Vinaigrette

  • Combine the ingredients in a blender and blend on high for 30 seconds until very creamy. Alternatively, you can add the ingredients to a bowl and use an immersion blender. Set aside.

Maple Apple Cider Vinaigrette

How to Make Candied Pecans

  • Reduce oven temp to 350 (or preheat to this temp if making these ahead of time!) and line a small baking sheet with foil.
  • Add the pecans, maple syrup, cayenne, and salt to the baking sheet and toss to combine. Bake the pecans for 15 minutes. Let them cool for at least 5 minutes.
  • These would also make a great holiday gift if you package them up in individual bags!

Candied pecans in a mason jar

How to Make Roasted Butternut Squash

  • Preheat your oven to 400 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper for easy cleanup.
  • Combine the squash, olive oil, salt, and maple syrup on the baking sheet and toss to coat using your hands. Bake the squash for 35-40 minutes until it is fork tender and beginning to brown.

Roasted Sweet Potatoes on a sheet pan

How to Make the Harvest Salad

  • Add the arugula, sliced apples, avocado, pomegranate seeds, prosciutto pieces, candied pecans, and roasted butternut squash to a large bowl. Toss with the dressing and add goat cheese on top, if desired. Enjoy!

Mary’s Tips & Tricks

Candied Pecans: The candied pecans can be made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container (or plastic baggie) on the counter for up to 5 days.

Butternut Squash: The butternut squash can also be roasted ahead of time (no more than 48 hours). You can add it to the salad cold, or heat it back up before adding to the salad.

Harvest Salad Dressing: The apple cider vinaigrette dressing can also be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Pouring maple apple cider vinaigrette on harvest salad

FAQs

How do I store the leftovers of this fall harvest salad? It’s best to store leftovers without the dressing already tossed in, otherwise the ingredients will become soggy.

  • One option is to make each salad individually and store the ingredients in separate containers for subsequent salads the next day! Ingredients stored separately will last in the fridge for up to one week!
  • If you have leftovers from the salad already put together (but without dressing) you can store them combined in an airtight container for 1-2 days! Add the dressing and enjoy your harvest salad for lunch the next day!

What can I make with the leftover Maple Apple Cider Vinaigrette? If you have leftover dressing, store it in an airtight container in your fridge for leftover harvest salad, or use it as a salad dressing for other yummy salads. It’s such a yummy, tangy, versatile dressing that will pair well with most salads, or use it as a chicken marinade!

Can I use sweet potato instead of butternut squash? Absolutely! Roasted sweet potato will work perfectly in this harvest salad. Follow the same quantities for substitution.

Can I use cranberries instead of pomegranate seeds? Yes! If you prefer cranberries, they will also substitute perfectly in this salad both in taste and color!

Other Yummy Fall Recipes

Easy Paleo Roasted Turkey

Creamy Dairy Free Mashed Potatoes

Healthy Green Bean Casserole

Sausage Apple Herb Stuffing

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Fall Harvest Salad with Maple Apple Cider Vinaigrette

This amazing harvest salad is packed with roasted butternut squash, apples, pomegranate seeds, prosciutto, arugula, candied pecans, avocado, and a delicious homemade, tangy fall salad dressing! Topped with creamy goat cheese, this salad has all the flavors of the season & is sure to leave you feeling satisfied for hours. Naturally gluten free & grain free.
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Ingredients

Salad

  • 5 oz baby arugula
  • 1 honeycrisp apple, thinly sliced
  • 4 oz prosciutto, cut or ripped into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 avocado, pitted and cut into cubes
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate arils
  • 1/2 cup goat cheese, crumbled - omit for dairy free!

Maple Apple Cider Vinaigrette

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1.5 tsp Dijon Mustard
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

Butternut Squash

  • 4 cups butternut squash, cut into cubes
  • 1.5 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup

Candied Pecans

  • 1 cup raw, unsalted pecans
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

Equipment

  • Blender or immersion blender

Instructions
 

Maple Apple Cider Vinaigrette

  • Combine the ingredients in a blender and blend on high for 30 seconds until very creamy. Alternatively, you can add the ingredients to a bowl and use an immersion blender. Set aside.

Butternut Squash

  • Preheat your oven to 400 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper for easy cleanup.
  • Combine the squash, olive oil, salt, and maple syrup on the baking sheet and toss to coat using your hands. Bake the squash for 35-40 minutes until it is fork tender and beginning to brown.

Candied pecans

  • Reduce oven temp to 350 (or preheat to this temp if making these ahead of time!) and line a small baking sheet with foil.
  • Add the pecans, maple syrup, cayenne, and salt to the baking sheet and toss to combine. Bake the pecans for 15 minutes. Let them cool for at least 5 minutes.

Salad

  • Add the arugula, sliced apples, avocado, pomegranate seeds, prosciutto pieces, candied pecans, and roasted butternut squash to a large bowl. Toss with the dressing and add goat cheese on top, if desired. Enjoy!

Notes

The candied pecans can be made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container (or plastic baggie) on the counter for up to 5 days. 
The butternut squash can also be roasted ahead of time (no more than 48 hours). You can add it to the salad cold, or heat it back up before adding to the salad. 
The dressing can also be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Nutrition

Calories: 567kcal, Carbohydrates: 38g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 44g, Saturated Fat: 9g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g, Monounsaturated Fat: 26g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 21mg, Sodium: 612mg, Potassium: 813mg, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 21g, Vitamin A: 10795IU, Vitamin C: 30mg, Calcium: 154mg, Iron: 2mg