Post sponsored by Bob’s Red Mill. See below for more details.
It’s about this time of year that I have a couple of squash left in storage. I find it less appealing to eat more squash when I start to see asparagus as the market, but this butternut squash salad is a good mix of winter and spring. I love fresh greens that are perfect from the cool weather and very herb-forward flavors like this hemp dressing. More and more I’m enjoying the idea of making a meal vegan, then adding non-vegan items as I like. This dressing is creamy thanks to the hemp seeds and is a lovely pair for the spice from the chipotle roasted butternut squash. The dressing makes more than needed but you can use it throughout the week on side salads or grain bowls.
Butternut Squash Salad with Hemp Dressing
- 2 cups 1/2" cubed butternut squash
- 1/4 sliced red onion
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon chipotle powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup chickpeas, drained and rinsed if using canned
- 3 to 4 handfuls baby spinach
- 1/2 cup Bob's Red Mill raw, hulled hemp seeds, plus extra for topping
- 6 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons fresh minced chives
- 11/2 tablespoons fresh minced parsley
- 1/2 tablespoon fresh minced dill
- 1 clove small garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 400˚. In a roasting pan, toss together the cubed butternut squash, sliced onion, olive oil, chipotle powder, and salt. Spread into a single layer and bake for 20 to minutes, until the squash is tender and onions are just starting to brown. Remove from oven, stir in chickpeas, and return to the over for another 5 to 10 minutes until the chickpeas are warm. Remove and let cool slightly.
- While squash is roasting, combine ingredients for the dressing in a (high-powered) blender and run for 30 seconds, until the dressing begins to smooth. Pour into a container and place in the refrigerator until ready to serve salad.
- Combine spinach with butternut squash mixture in a large bowl. Drizzle about 1/4 cup of the dressing over and toss until salad is well coated. Serve salad with extra hemp seeds and dressing as desired.
by Erin Alderson
+ Dressing adapted from Oh She Glows.
Step by Step
Butternut Squash Salad
If you’re looking for a solid, creamy vegan dressing, this hemp dressing is the one for you. It’s base flavors are that of my favorite homemade (non-vegan) ranch, and I’ve found myself using this dressing as a stand-in dipping sauce and grain bowl dressing.
Spice: Depending on the chipotle powder you use, the squash could be a bit spicy. If you’re looking for an alternative, try smoked paprika. Or, if you have any chipotle in adobo sauce hanging around, use a partial pepper and some sauce in place of the powder.
Squash: Besides butternut squash, I nearly always have a couple extra delicata squash or sweet potato in my winter produce drawer. Either would work with the flavors of this salad (and a delicate squash you would have to peel!)
Herbs: The base for the herbed hemp dressing is also great using basil or cilantro (depending on the type of flavor profile you are looking to have!)
I’ve been using hemp seeds for years in my kitchen, primarily as a topping for waffles, pancakes, oats, and granola. While they have a nice warm, slightly nutty flavor, hemp seeds carry a nice nutritional punch (plus a little goes a long way!)