A healthy delicious and filling winter squash salad made with slowly roasted squash, flavorful wild rice, sharp arugula and a creamy tangy tahini pumpkin coconut cream dressing. You’d never guess that the recipe is both vegan and gluten-free.
Before making this salad I had honestly never tried or made wild rice before.Seemed like as good a time as any to finally give it a shot. Regular white rice has grown old after all these years, so a bit of colorful more exotic rice is a welcome change. What makes wild rice stand out is a firmer texture that is a bit more crunchy than regular old white rice. It holds up perfectly in salads and something about it just screams winter weather to me, hence why I chose to make a winter squash salad with the wild rice.
You will need to give this recipe a bit longer to cook. Wild rice definitely demands more time and you do not want to rush it. Make sure to remove it from heat at just the right time though.
I may have gotten distracted for a few minutes and might have just over cooked the wild rice by just a little bit. You don’t want to do this. Rice and I just sometimes do not get along. For whatever reason I find it surprisingly easy to overcook rice every single time that I make it. I can prepare highly complex and complicated meals, yet when it comes to rice, I frequently over do it. Is there anything you cook with that frequently ends up overcooked or burnt? Tell me I’m not alone here!
The rest of the ingredients in this wild rice squash salad with tahini dressing were perfect though. The squash is soft and tender, while the dressing is creamy, zesty and thick, combining all the flavors into one.
I love using tahini to make dressing. Nut butter can be too overwhelmingly nutty at times, just overpowering the other ingredients in a dish but tahini, while smooth and creamy is a bit more neutral in taste. I love mixing it with olive oil, lemon juice and just a hint of maple syrup to add some sweetness. To make this dressing even more winter themed I added a bit of creamy pumpkin puree. Yep, pumpkin puree in the dressing – trust me it’s the best!
You can whisk the dressing together by hand and when the winter squash salad is ready to be served drizzle it on top. With each bite of this winter squash salad you get some wild rice, caramelized squash, sharp arugula and creamy tahini pumpkin dressing.
Let me know what you think of this winter squash salad in the comments below!
For other salad recipe ideas be sure to check out my sweet potato chickpea salad, – another favorite of mine!
A healthy delicious and filling winter squash salad made with slowly roasted squash, flavorful wild rice, sharp arugula and a creamy tangy tahini pumpkin coconut cream dressing. You'd never guess that the recipe is both vegan and gluten-free.
- 1 1/2 cups wild rice rinsed
- 3 cups butternut suqash
- splash of extra virgin olive oil
- 4 shallots peeled
- 2 teaspoons fresh rosemary diced
- 1/3 cup tahini
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons pumpkin puree
- 2 handfuls arugula
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a bowl combine squash, splash of olive oil, shallots, fresh rosemary and salt and pepper to taste. Toss until mixed.
- Bake for 35-45 minutes in a single layer on parchment lined baking sheet, until lightly browned and soft.
- Cook wild rice according to package directions.
- In a bowl combine tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, maple syrup, coconut milk and pumpkin puree. Mix until smooth.
- Combine half of the dressing with the wild rice.
- Serve arugula topped with wild rice, squash and additional remaining dressing.