Simple, and festive roasted cauliflower salad with butternut squash, spring greens, and a lemon-honey vinaigrette! Serve this fall salad for lunch or pair it with your favorite entree for the perfect meal.

roasted cauliflower and butternut salad on a bed of greens, topped with nuts and raisins, on a blue plate

The perfect cauliflower salad for the fall!

The beauty of this healthy roasted cauliflower salad with butternut squash, is that it combines the simple comforts of roasted vegetables with fresh, crisp salad greens – all dressed in a delightfully bright lemon-honey vinaigrette.

Roasted vegetables, particularly roasted roots, taste great simply cooked with a drizzle of olive oil and salt--the kind of comfort I look forward every fall. In this simple recipe, cauliflower and butternut squash share the spot light as the star ingredients. Roasted to tender perfection, then tossed (while still warm) in a light lemon and honey vinaigrette, and piled on top of spring greens, you have the perfect fall roasted vegetable salad. For texture, I love to add some toasted nuts and raisins or cranberries, which make this salad a festive little dish.

If I were the planning type, I'd file this roasted butternut squash and cauliflower salad under "Thanksgiving side dishes."

Ingredients you need to make this fall salad

  • Cauliflower
  • Butternut squash
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Spring mix - or any baby salad greens of your choice, such as spinach or kale
  • Toasted nuts of your choice- I used a combination of almonds, pine nuts, and walnuts
  • Raisins or dried cranberries (or other chopped dried fruit), optional

Dressing for roasted vegetable salad

The lemon-honey dressing is really what makes this salad shine, giving the roasted vegetables lots of flavor, brightness, and a hint of sweetness. Remember to toss the roasted veggies up with the dressing while they're still pretty warm so that they will absorb as much for the flavor as possible. Here is what you need to make it this dressing:

How to make roasted cauliflower salad:

Caramelized roasted vegetables, fresh salad greens, a bright, zesty dressing, and a sweet and crunchy topping all come together to create a gluten-free, vegan fall salad that is both healthy and comforting. Here’s how to make this roasted vegetable salad:

  • First roast the veggies. Toss the cauliflower florets with extra virgin olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Arrange in a single layer on a sheet pan. Cover and roast in a 450 degrees F heated oven for about 15 minutes. Uncover and add butternut squash cubes (also after tossing them in olive oil and seasoning). Roast uncovered for another 30 minutes or until the veggies are tender and beautifully charred (take a look occasionally and toss the veggies if needed for even cooking)

    roasted butternut squash and roasted cauliflower on a sheet pan
  • Make the dressing. Whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, and seasonings.

    Roasted Butternut Squash and Cauliflower Salad | The Mediterranean Dish. An easy, comforting and bright salad! Try it for lunch or add it to your dinner or even to the Thanksgiving feast!
  • Put the salad together and serve. Toss your spring mix or salad greens with about 2 tablespoons of the dressing and arrange them on a platter. When the roasted vegetables are finished, toss them with the reamining dressing (while till warm), then add them to the salad. Garnish with nuts and raisins or dried fruit of your choice.In a large bowl, mix the salad greens with two tablespoons of vinaigrette before transferring to a serving platter.
two plates with a bed of greens, roasted cauliflower and butternut salad, topped with raisins and nuts

How to roast cauliflower without getting it mushy?

I wrote a full post on how to roast cauliflower perfectly so that it is beautifully charred with just a hint of sweetness but never mushy. The secret? First, start with fresh cauliflower rather than frozen bags. Make sure the cauliflower is cut into similar size florets so they cook evenly at the same time. To cook it well, at first, cook the cauliflower covered in a high-heated oven (this will help trap the moisture to cook it properly on the inside). Then uncover and finish cooking it in high heat so that it will crisp and char on the outside.

How to serve this fall salad

This beautiful fall salad recipe is perfect served while the roasted veggies are still warm or at room temperature. I like to serve it as a composed salad with the roasted vegetables arranged on a bed of my spring greens on a large platter or salad dishes. It looks lovely that way, and you get to enjoy all the fall colors and textures.

What to serve along

This roasted vegetable salad makes a perfect light meal on its own or next to a fall soup like roasted butternut squash soup. It would also be a delicious side for festive entrees like Citrus Rosemary Chicken, Roast Rack of Lamb.

More cauliflower and butternut squash recipes to try

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4.89 from 26 votes

Roasted Cauliflower Salad

The Mediterranean Dish
roasted cauliflower and butternut salad on a bed of greens, topped with nuts and raisins, on a blue plate
Simple roasted cauliflower salad with butternut squash, spring greens, a light zesty dressing, and toasted nuts. You'll love the texture and flavor of this fall salad. Serve on its own or next to your favorite fall entree (I've added some suggestions in the post)
Prep – 15 mins
Cook – 45 mins
Cuisine:
Mediterranean
Serves – 6 up to
Course:
Salad

Ingredients
  

  • 2 cups cubed butternut squash
  • 1 whole head cauliflower cut into small florets of equal size
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 5 ounces spring mix
  • ¼ cup toasted nuts of your choice such as sliced almonds pine nuts, and walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons raisins optional

Lemon-Honey Vinaigrette

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons good quality honey
  • Kosher salt and Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sumac

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F and position a rack in the middle.
  • Spread the cauliflower florets on one large sheet pan. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil. Toss to coat.
  • Cover the sheet pan with foil. Roast in the heated oven for 15 minutes, covered.
  • Meanwhile, toss the butternut squash cubes with a bit of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Set aside for now.
  • When ready, carefully remove the cauliflower pan from the oven and uncover the foil. Push the cauliflower aside and add the cubed butternut squash, making sure not to crowd the pan (everything should be in one layer touching the hot pan surface). Return the pan to the oven and cook for another 25 to 30 minutes, turning the vegetables over as needed. (If needed, broil ever so briefly to get more char).
  • Prepare the lemon-honey vinaigrette. In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, Dijon mustard, honey, salt, pepper, and sumac.
  • In a salad bowl, mix the spring mix (or leafy salad greens of your choice) with 2 tablespoon of the lemon-honey vinaigrette. Transfer to a serving platter.
  • Pour the remaining vinaigrette over the roasted butternut squash and cauliflower (while the vegetables are hot), carefully toss to coat.
  • To assemble, add the roasted butternut squash and cauliflower on top of the salad greens. Garnish with the nuts and raisins. Enjoy!

Notes

  • For best flavor, be sure to toss the roasted vegetables with the vinaigrette while the vegetables are still warm. 
  • Make-ahead: You can roast the vegetables one night in advance. You can toss them with the vinaigrette right then, or store them in the fridge but be sure to warm up the next day and coat them with the dressing. 
  • Leftovers: keep leftover salad in a tight-lid container in the fridge for up to 3 days
  • How to toast nuts: Simply heat a skillet, add a small drizzle of olive oil, and toast the nuts, tossing regularly, until they change color. With pine nuts, this can happen very quickly – watch them carefully so they don’t burn.
  • Visit our shop to browse quality Mediterranean ingredients including olive oils and spices

Nutrition

Calories: 210.2kcalCarbohydrates: 21.1gProtein: 2.8gFat: 14.4gSaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 10.3gSodium: 242mgPotassium: 542.8mgFiber: 3.2gSugar: 8.7gVitamin A: 5229.9IUVitamin C: 63.7mgCalcium: 49.4mgIron: 1.1mg
Tried this recipe?

*This post originally appeared on The Mediterranean Dish in 2015. The recipe and post have been updated with new information and media for readers' benefit.

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I'm Suzy; born and bred right on the shores of the Mediterranean. I'm all about easy, healthy recipes with big Mediterranean flavors. Three values guide my cooking: eat with the seasons; use whole foods; and above all, share! So happy you're here...
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Comments

  1. I agree with Elaine. What an explosion of flavors , a 4th of July fireworks show in my mouth! Cauli? Goood. Squash? Gooood. Goat cheese, nuts? Goood. And the lemon dressing is bonus. All work together so well, a harmonious symphony. that leads you to your feet applauding, and maybe wiping a tear or two. But they are happy tears.

      1. 5 stars
        I am very confused by the number of comments to this recipe that refer to goat cheese or feta or "substituting feta for goat cheese", as if the recipe called for some cheese. I don't see any cheese listed in the ingredients or the preparation instructions. Am I missing something?

      2. Hi, Anne-Marie. This is one of our older recipes which we've updated in the last year. During that update, the cheese was removed. It is something you can totally add if you'd like to, though!

  2. 5 stars
    made this last night with what I had on hand.

    whole family loved it. substituted romaine for kale, feta for goat cheese, and aamchur for sumac.

    omitted the pine nuts, walnuts, and raisins

  3. It’s an explosion of flavor on my mouth. I bought precut butternut squash at my local store so it was easy to toss into the oven with the cauliflower and I didn’t have goat cheese so I used feta. I loved the garnish and the dressing just elevated it. Beyond wonderful and thank you!

  4. 3 stars
    What a lovely recipe! The veggies get so sweet when roasted, and the simple sumac, salt, and pepper bring out their flavors without overpowering them. The vinaigrette is heavenly as well - very smooth and not too tart. I'm not sure how I'll enjoy the raw kale, but that's personal preference, and I think gently reheating will cause it to soften, which is how I like it.
    Thanks for sharing!

    1. Hi Candace! Thanks for your sweet feedback. When the kale is mixed in with a bit of the dressing and left briefly, it wilts nicely. But if you like it warm, feel free! Enjoy!

  5. 5 stars
    Roasted vegetables always put a smile on my face but add this really special vinaigrette and I'd be in heaven. I'm going to make this very soon!

  6. Hi Suzy

    I can't remember the last time I saw such an amazing salad. This is my perfect mix of vegetables, nuts, cheese and dressing. It will be getting made this week without doubt.

    1. David, so good to see you here again! Hope all is well. Can't wait to hear how you like this salad, once you try it. Cheers!

      1. Hi Suzy

        Salad was delicious, I didn't have sumac so used a combo of ras-el-hanout and zatar. Your salad dressing is similar to a dressing I use for potato salad. I use walnut oil and walnuts together with the lemon and honey, then throw some warm spuds in. Surprisingly a taste sensation.

        Have a nice day.

        Dave

      2. Awesome, David! Love your creative take on the salad and the addition of Za'atar and Ras-el-Hanout! Well done!

  7. Thank you Suzy, this will be on our family table for Thanksgiving. I know I will not wait for Thanksgiving, I am going to prepare this soon...

    1. Stormie, so glad you liked this recipe! It will make my Thanksgiving table too! But you're right, don't wait to try it. My family had it for lunch last weekend, it was one of the quickest-devoured lunches in a while! Can't wait to hear how you like it.

  8. A true fall feast not just fest with this recipe. It is great that you roasted the cauliflower too.

  9. You have some of my favorite flavors going on in this dish! I love everything about it, from the healthiness to the colors to the flavors! Yum!

  10. Perfect idea...I have Butternut Squash in the refrigerator cut up and ready to go. Hot food doesn't sound very good, but this recipe is perfect.

    1. Great, Vicki! I am glad you like this idea...a little different. There is the comfort of fall still, but combined with the crisp of kale and spinach. And the lemon-honey vinaigrette brings it all together nicely. You can serve this warm or at room temp.