This Harvest Farro Salad with Kale and Butternut Squash is the perfect healthy autumn meal. Full of fresh fall flavors, cranberries, pecans, and a punchy apple cider vinaigrette.
Fall is here. Or, at least, it’s coming.
I can barely contain my excitement. Leaves are changing. Sweatshirt weather is slowly becoming the norm. And I’m not even going to lie, I’ve kind of jumped the gun on decorating.
Rewind to me checking out at Target last week, smiling and happily placing my adorable Halloween decorations on the belt. (Mini herringbone fabric pumpkins, be still my heart.) Rewind also to the sweet lady who checked me out, looking up at me and as politely-as-possible asking me, “Hun, you know it’s the first week of September, right?”
Yeah, yeah. Did I mention the mini herringbone pumpkins?
This is by far my favorite time of the year. And, like all things in life, I associate nostalgia with certain foods. When autumn arrives, I crave hot tea, hot chocolate, homemade baked goods, warm comfort foods, and, naturally…all things pumpkin.
However, not all of those things are the greatest for you, so it’s all about moderation. Luckily, I also crave fresh fall produce, plenty of greens, and bright ingredients.
This farro salad is a perfect mix of that. It’s the epitome of fall. Cranberries. Toasty pecans. Vibrant kale and arugula. A punchy apple cider vinaigrette. Roasted butternut squash. Apples.
Plus, I love that it comes together pretty effortlessly. I love using little short-cuts for this salad on busy weekdays. I buy the “10 Minute Farro” from Trader Joe’s, and I get organic butternut squash that’s already cubed and peeled. That makes the two most time-consuming parts of this meal a lot easier.
I’m a big fan of adding grains to a vegetarian salad to bulk up the meal a bit. Plus, farro is so awesome for you. Farro contains more fiber than similar grains (rice or quinoa), and it’s also a great source of protein, B vitamins, antioxidants, and iron.
Don’t you want a bowl?!
Come on over. We can sit on the porch in over-sized, chunky cable-knit sweaters, sip tea, and talk about life. I’ll make us this Harvest Farro Salad for lunch.
Then we can make Halloween crafts and decorate our houses! No? Too early?
Enjoy this Harvest Farro Salad and happy, happy fall! What are your favorite fall activities and foods? Tell me in the comments below!
Here are a few things you may need (or want) for this recipe:
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- 12 ounces of cubed butternut squash, roasted
- ½ cup chopped pecans, roasted and salted
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- 2 cups cooked farro, cooled*
- 5 ounces baby kale
- 1 heaping cup arugula
- 1 Gala apple, cut into matchsticks
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons minced shallot
- 1 tablespoon Dijon
- 3 teaspoons honey
- Sea salt and pepper, to taste
- Combine all of the ingredients in a glass mason jar and shake vigorously until combined. Set aside to let meld.
- Combine the butternut squash with a splash of olive oil, salt, and pepper, and roast at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes until tender.
- For the farro, cook 1 cup of dried farro in 3 cups of water or stock. Add rinsed farro to a pot of water/stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes, or until tender. Drain and let cool.
- Cut the apple into matchsticks and roughly chop the pecans. Toss with the kale, arugula, farro, squash, and cranberries. Dress with the vinaigrette and serve topped with additional pecans and cranberries, if desired.