Pumpkin Feta Salad is the perfect healthy vegetarian dish to enjoy with friends and family.
Our quick & easy Pumpkin Feta Salad features roasted beets, chopped kale, pine nuts, fresh mint and a balsamic olive oil vinaigrette.
This Pumpkin Pine Nut Salad is vegetarian, low carb and Keto diet-friendly.
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My Family Loves Roasted Pumpkin Feta Salad
My family loves fresh salads, especially if they are quick and easy to make last minute.
We’re all omnivores and thankfully don’t have any allergies. We try and balance a healthy diet that features lean meat, sustainable seafood, local cheese, legumes, seeds, nuts and fresh vegetables.
In the fall we typically prepare this pumpkin and beetroot salad in the oven. In the summer, during barbecue season, you can roast the beets and pumpkin on the grill.
If you’re pairing this Pumpkin Pine Nut Salad with a protein at dinner, feel free to cook the beets and squash beside your favourite steaks, pork chops, sausages or seafood.
How To Roast Pumpkin
Roasting pumpkin at home in the oven is easy.
There are two common methods for roasting pumpkin:
- Sliced in Half: Simply cut the pumpkin or squash in half, prick with the tines of a fork to let out steam, scoop out the seeds, slather with vegetable oil and bake. This method results in a tender pumpkin flesh that can easily be scooped into a blender and added to a smooth soup.
- Chopped into Chunks: Simply cut the pumpkin or squash into uniformly-sized chunks, toss in vegetable oil, spread out pieces on a baking sheet to ensure they don’t touch and roast in the oven. This is the method we use to prepare this salad as it ensures the pumpkin pieces develop a caramelized crunchy exterior and soft interior.
How To Roast Beetroot
Roasting beetroot at home in the oven is easy.
Roasting transforms beets from a crunchy vegetable into a silky, tender and sweet salad topping.
The easiest way to roast beets at home is by wrapping them in foil and tucking them into the oven to cook alongside other braises, bread, or whatever else you might be cooking for dinner.
The tin foil traps the moisture released from the beetroot as it cooks, allowing steam to tenderize the vegetable so it has a soft interior when removed from the oven.
Pumpkin Feta Salad Health Benefits
Our Pumpkin Feta Salad recipe is packed full of healthy ingredients!
It is only recently that scientists have begun to identify the components responsible for garlic’s myriad health benefits. Rich in phytochemicals and potassium, garlic helps boost your immune system, fight cancer and protect your heart.
All varieties of pumpkin (or squash) are nutritious, but butternut squash is a superfood because it contains high levels of carotenoids, which help combat cancer and support skin health.
Beets are very low in cholesterol and saturated fat, they are a very good source of dietary fibre, folate, potassium, manganese, Vitamin C, iron and magnesium.
Low in calories and high in vitamins K, C, A and the B vitamin folate, kale supports your eyesight, bones, and circulation.
Consuming dairy products (such as milk and cheese) provides health benefits — especially improved bone health. Dairy foods provide nutrients that are vital for health and maintenance of your body. These nutrients include calcium, potassium, vitamin D, and protein.
Pine nuts contain bone-strengthening vitamin K and antioxidant vitamin E. They are extremely rich in manganese, which is needed for many of the chemical processes in your body.
Fresh mint is antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, and can have a calming effect on the digestive system. It is also a good source of folate, which supports blood health.
Olive Oil is ranked as one of the healthiest fats and is a staple in the Mediterranean diet. It contains vitamins E and K and plenty of beneficial fatty acids and antioxidants.
Tips For Making The Best Pumpkin Feta Salad
If it’s your first time making Roasted Pumpkin Feta Salad we suggest you start by reading the ingredients list and recipe directions below so you understand each step.
We think the best salad offers the perfect contrast of flavours, textures and colours. The flavours of our pumpkin and beetroot salad are tangy, sweet, salty and nutty. Diverse textures include crumbly feta cheese, crunchy pine nuts and pumpkin seeds, tender beets and soft chunks of roasted pumpkin. The crowd-pleasing salad offers pops of green, white, orange and ruby red.
Hosting a large dinner and are time crunched? We suggest roasting the beetroot and pumpkin 24 hours in advance and leaving them in the fridge to keep cool overnight. That way the only work you have to do at mealtime is assemble the prepared ingredients into a salad bowl.
If you have vegans joining you for dinner this dish would not be suitable unless you omit the feta cheese. Feel free to assemble the salad but leave the crumbled cheese in a dish at the table as a courtesy to any dairy-free guests.
We’ve sprinkled the salad with crunchy pumpkin seeds and pine nuts. If you’re cupboard has run dry, feel free to substitute with sunflower seeds, chopped hazelnuts or pecans.
We love presenting this Pumpkin Pine Nut Salad’s colourful ingredients over a bed of finely chopped kale. You could also substitute for peppery arugula.
We’ve garnished the salad with fresh mint leaves but you could also add fresh basil, parsley, cilantro or butter-fried sage.
What To Serve with Pumpkin and Beetroot Salad
This popular cold pumpkin feta salad can be enjoyed as a main course or side dish. It keeps well in the fridge for 2-3 days so store it in an airtight container and enjoy leftovers as a quick and easy lunch at work.
We love serving our Beetroot Salad as an entree, enjoying large bowls with a slice of sourdough bread or gourmet crackers. We intentionally created a salad that is well balanced nutritionally so your body has everything it needs in one dish.
The best pumpkin and beetroot salad should be paired with a bottle of dry white wine, preferably from a local winery in Beamsville, Niagara on the Lake or Prince Edward County. The recipe also pairs well with a citrus-forward IPA craft beer. If you’re more of a mixed drink fan check our our guide to the best craft cocktails.
There’s a reason so many restaurants have “soup & salad specials” We definitely recommend pairing our Roasted Beetroot Salad with a homemade soup like Roasted Sweet Potato and Red Pepper Soup or Carrot and Leek Soup.
If you’re looking to host a healthy potluck or salad themed buffet you may also want to serve Goi Ga Vietnamese Salad, Roasted Vegetable Couscous, Sweet Potato Rice, The Best Canadian Salad Recipe, Garlic Lemon Chickpea Avocado Salad, Vegan Chinese Cucumber Salad, Nam Tok Thai “Waterfall Beef” Salad, Laos Papaya Salad Tum Mak Hoong, Roasted Beetroot Salad with Grapefruit, Pistachio and Herbed Cream, Mizeria Creamy Polish Cucumber Salad, Goi Xoai Vietnamese Mango Salad or Indian Onion Salad.
If you’re serving this cold salad at a barbecue, it pairs nicely with plump sausages, hamburgers, steaks or grilled prawns.
If you’re looking for a great dessert idea to enjoy after your Pumpkin Pine Nut Salad feast why not try our popular Blueberry Mango Crepes with Coconut Flour, Banana Oat Flour Pancakes, Apple Fritter Muffins, Sticky Toffee Banana and Date Muffins or Dark Chocolate Lindt Lindor Cookies.
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How To Make Roasted Pumpkin Feta Salad
Roasted Pumpkin Feta Salad
- baking sheet
- French knife
- measuring cups
- measuring spoons
- Tin foil
- 2 cups Squash or Pumpkin diced
- 2 Medium-sized Beets
- 6 tbsp Olive oil
- 4 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
- 4 Garlic cloves minced
- 2 cups Kale finely chopped
- 1/4 cup Feta Cheese crumbled
- 2 tbsp Roasted Pine Nuts
- 1 tbsp Fresh Mint
- 1 tbsp Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
- Place a rack in the centre of the oven and preheat to 400 degrees.
- Trim the greens, tops and stems from the beets. Wash thoroughly and wrap in aluminum foil packages.
- Peel and remove seeds from pumpkin and cut 2 cups into a chunky dice. Toss in 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
- Place the beet package on the corner of a baking sheet. Then spread out the pumpkin chunks on the remainder of the baking sheet ensuring the pieces do not touch. This ensures they will caramelize and get crispy.
- Bake beets and pumpkin until they are easily pierced by a fork or knife, 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on size. After 20 minutes, flip pumpkin chunks so they bake evenly on both sides.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine minced garlic, oil, vinegar and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
- Remove roasted beets and pumpkin from oven and carefully open foil packages to let steam escape. Let cool at least 30 minutes.
- Unwrap roasted beets and use a peeler to remove tough skin. Dice beets into bite-size pieces. Add to bowl with garlic mixture, mix well and let marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
- Moments before you're ready to serve get a large salad bowl and spread out chopped kale. Decorate with warm roasted pumpkin and marinated beets. Top with crumbled feta, pine nuts, roasted pumpkin seeds and fresh mint.
- Drizzle salad with balsamic vinaigrette and serve warm or cold.
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