Harvest Quinoa Salad

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Make Ahead & Enjoy Throughout the week!

Easy to make, healthy, filling and seriously delicious, there isn’t much left out with this Harvest Quinoa Salad. One of those dishes you could eat over and over (I know from experience). It’s full of warm spices, roasted butternut squash, baked chicken sausage, fluffy quinoa and crunchy almonds and pecans drizzled with a maple apple cider vinegar dressing. This quinoa salad will be definitely be on repeat in your household this Fall!

Ok, so if we’re going to be real here, this quinoa salad is inspired by the fact that I have been non stop the last couple of weeks. Between travelling two weeks back-to-back, a sick toddler, then a sick husband, lots of busy exciting work projects and just life in general  and I’ve been enjoying all of the foods and evening glasses of wine and next to non of the exercise…oops!

So this week I’ve set out to prepare myself with good and easy meals, because Joel is gone away this week and life isn’t getting any slower here and I just need to pull up my big girl socks and organize my life a little better (tears in eyes) 😉

I couldn’t have picked a better dish to kick off my way back into a better routine! I’ve have no lies been eating this quinoa salad NON STOP! So tasty and perfect to make ahead for the week and stores like a dream in the fridge. Extra points because it’s served perfectly warm or cold depending on your preference and other than roasting the veggies and sausage, it takes next to no time to whip up!

Tips for Making This Quinoa Salad

  • Ingredients:
    • You only need a small butternut squash for this recipe which is hard to judge since they come in a range of sizes but it eye ball around 4 cups of cubed pieces
    • I used chicken and apple sausage in mine from a local company Spolumbos that I really enjoy but if you can’t find chicken apple, go ahead and use just chicken sausage
    • Also, a tip when buying pecan pieces. If you have them, great! Chopped them up or leave them whole but I find buying pre chopped pecans a bit cheaper than buying full pecans as they are a bit more expensive 
  • Make sure to rinse your quinoa first as it can sometimes taste bitter if your don’t. Run under cold water and allow to drain
  • I used chicken broth to cook my quinoa but you can use water if you prefer
  • After the water has been absorbed and the quinoa is fully cooked, try fluffy your quinoa with a fork instead of stirring it. It will keep it from mushing together
  • If you’re making for lunches for the week, you can add the dressing before or after, it will stay well in the fridge in air tight containers either way!
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Harvest Quinoa Salad

This quinoa salad is packed with Fall flavours! Warm spiced butternut squash, chicken sausage, quinoa, almonds and pecans, drizzled with maple and apple cider dressing. Sure to be your go to meal for these cooler months!

  • Author: Tanya Bates
  • Prep Time: 10 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 Minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 5 Servings

Ingredients

  • 1 Small Butternut Squash Peeled and Cubed
  • 1 Tbsp of Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Tsp of Chili Powder
  • 1/2 Tsp of Cinnamon
  • 1/2 Tsp of Granulated Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 Tsp of Sea Salt
  • 4 Large Chicken Apple Sausages (Chicken is fine, I just happened to find chicken apple)
  • 1 Cup of Quinoa Rinsed
  • 2 Cups of Chicken Broth or Water
  • 1 Cup of Spinach Cut into Strips
  • 1/3 Cup of Sliced Almonds
  • 1/3 Cup of Chopped Pecan Pieces

DRESSING

  • 1/4 Cup of Pure Maple Syrup
  • 1/4 Cup of Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbsp of Dijon
  • 2 Tbsp of Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Sea Salt & Pepper to Taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper
  2. Cut butternut squash in half lengthwise and using a spoon, remove the seeds. Using a vegetable peeler, remove the outside skin and cut off the stem at both ends and cut into bite sized cubes
  3. In a large bowl add the butternut squash, 1 Tbsp of olive oil, chili powder, garlic powder, cinnamon and salt and pepper and combine to fully coat the squash. Transfer squash to the baking sheet leaving room for the sausages
  4. Place chicken sausage on the baking sheet with the squash and place in to oven to bake for approx 25-30 minutes or until the chicken sausage is fully cooked and the squash is cooked through and tender
  5. While the squash and sausages are cooking, place the quinoa in a medium pot with chicken broth or water and bring to a boil. Turn down heat and allow to cook until liquid is absorbed and quinoa is soft and fully cooked, roughly 10-15 minutes. Remove lid and fluff with a fork, do not stir or it can get mushed up
  6. In a small bowl, add the dressing ingredients and whisk until dressing is emulsified (it will look thicker) and season with salt and pepper to taste
  7. Once squash and sausage are cooked, allow to cool for 5 minutes, remove sausage and slice into rounds and transfer squash and sausage to a large serving bowl
  8. Add quinoa, almonds, pecan and spinach and drizzle dressing over top, toss to combine
  9. Serve hot or cold!

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