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Kale, butternut squash and corn quinoa salad

Kale, butternut squash and corn quinoa salad | www.ricottaandradishes.com

I’m going to keep this post fairly quick because if I look at the computer screen for one more minute, I think my eyes might fall out of my head!  One of those days.

In my previous life as a grad student, I learned a thing or two about how to not implode due to stress.  Drinking lots of water, getting enough sleep and fueling your body with the right nutrients is key to surviving a stressful period with your health intact.  Being back in school mode yet again, these obvious but oh-so-important tips are at the forefront of my mind.  Easier said than done, of course!

Kale, butternut squash and corn quinoa salad | www.ricottaandradishes.com

On busy nights, sometimes all you have the energy (or time) for is to throw a bunch of stuff in a bowl and dig in.  That’s pretty much how this salad was born.  It’s a bit of a mashup, containing fall favourites that you just might have in your fridge right now: roasted butternut squash, crunchy kale and sweet corn cut right off the cob.

Come to think of it, this salad would be the perfect way to use up some turkey dinner leftovers!  Thanksgiving is only a few weeks away for us Canadians, so we might as well get prepared ahead of time.

On that note, be sure to check out my Thanksgiving Week series from last fall.  I put together a full Thanksgiving menu with healthy recipes from sides to mains.  Maybe you’ll find a new dish or two to add to your own turkey day menu this year!

Kale, butternut squash and corn quinoa salad | www.ricottaandradishes.com

Kale, butternut squash and corn quinoa salad | www.ricottaandradishes.com

You can use just kale as the base for this salad, but more often than not I like to mix it with another green like romaine or red leaf lettuce (which is what I used in these photos).

Kale, butternut squash and corn quinoa salad
Serves 2
A healthy, whole foods fall salad made with crunchy kale, roasted butternut squash, corn and quinoa.
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Ingredients
  1. 6 cups shredded kale (or 3 cups kale, 3 cups other salad greens such as romaine)
  2. 1 cup cooked diced butternut squash
  3. 1/2 cup cooked corn kernels
  4. 1 cup cooked quinoa
  5. 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds
  6. 1/2 cup homemade red wine vinaigrette dressing (recipe here: http://www.ricottaandradishes.com/dressings-sauces-and-condiments/homemade-red-wine-vinaigrette/)
Instructions
  1. Heat the leftover squash in the microwave until warm. Divide the kale (and other greens, if using) among two large serving plates or bowls. Top each with equal amounts of the squash, corn, quinoa and seeds and pour dressing on top. Serve immediately.
Notes
  1. This recipe is designed to use up leftovers, so instructions aren't given for the roasted squash, corn or quinoa. Feel free to make substitutions (different kind of squash or sweet potato, another type of grain instead of quinoa, etc.) to use up whatever fall ingredients you've got on hand.
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