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Autumn Wheat Berry + Butternut Squash Salad

Autumn Wheat Berry Salad with butternut squash, kale & pomegranate is a flavorful, warm salad for the cooler days of fall and winter!

top down view of a serving of autumn wheat berry and butternut squash salad in a white bowl with gold fork.

The autumn season is well underway here in California!

Having a bag of wheat berries in my pantry just waiting to be used and butternut squash on hand, I put the two together, creating a warm and delicious hearty salad.

Today we’ll celebrate the season with this fall-colored Autumn Wheat Berry Salad with roasted butternut squash, wilted kale, and colorful pomegranate seeds all dressed with an apple cider vinaigrette.

Why We Love This Recipe!

  • Warm and tasty. It’s simply delicious and will nourish your body while brightening your day!
  • Makes enough for leftovers. This recipe will make enough to feed a small crowd, or you’ll have plenty of leftovers to nibble on or take for to-go lunches. ( Feel free to cut the recipe in half if you like, but I must say it was nice to have leftovers.)
  • Healthy and filling. Wheat berries are a low-gluten grain with ample protein and fiber per serving, about 6 grams each. They work well in salads and soups for added bulk and heartiness. If you haven’t tried them yet, hopefully, this is a little inspiration to get you started!
side by side pictures of the process of cooking the wheat berries and roasting the butternut squash.

How To Make Autumn Wheat Berry Salad

There are a few steps to the recipe, but they flow nicely, making it come together quickly. First, you’ll cook the wheat berries and add the kale at the end to help steam it. While that’s cooking, roast your butternut squash.

side by side photo of finely diced onions and dressing for autumn wheat berry butternut squash salad.

Next, dice the onions and saute until just softened. Prepare the vinaigrette, and set aside.

top down view of ingredients for wheat berry and butternut squash add to a mixing bowl, ready to be mixed.

Once you’ve cooked the wheat berries, wilted the kale, roasted the butternut squash, sauteed the onions, and made the dressing, add all the components to a bowl and mix it together.

top down view of freshly mixed wheat berry salad with butternut squash.

And voila, the final result is a colorful wheat berry salad to share with friends and family – or eat all to yourself!

More Butternut Squash Recipes

side angle view of a serving of autumn wheat berry and butternut squash salad in a white bowl with gold fork.

If you try this wheat berry salad recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment and rate it below. I love to hear what you think, or any changes you make.

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AUTUMN WHEAT BERRY + BUTTERNUT SQUASH SALAD

Wheat berries add heartiness and protein to this festive autumn salad. It will nourish and brighten your day!

  • Author: Julie | The Simple Veganista
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 45 min
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4 – 6 1x
  • Category: Salad, Side
  • Method: bake, boil, mix
  • Cuisine: Vegan

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 butternut squash, diced (about 4 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 cups dry wheat berries (I used Bob Red Mills)
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 bunch tuscan kale, stems removed and chopped
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 3/4 cup pomegranate seeds
  • mineral salt & fresh cracked pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley, optional

Apple Cider Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon dijon or whole grain mustard
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • fresh cracked pepper
  • pinch of salt

Instructions

Butternut squash: Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper, a silpat or lightly greased with oil. Place butternut squash on baking sheet, drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil, and mix well to coat. Add a sprinkle of salt and pepper over top. Place in oven on the middle rack and cook for 25 – 30 minutes, stirring after 15 minutes. Remove from oven, set aside.

Wheat berries + kale: In a medium size pot, add water, wheat berries and a pinch of salt, bring to boil, cover, reduce heat to low so water is at a gentle boil, and cook for 45 minutes, or until wheat berries are tender. Add kale to the wheat berries and give a good stir, let set for 5 minutes, or until kale softens and wilts. Drain wheat berries and kale.

Onion: In a small skillet or pan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat, add onion and cook 5 minutes, until softened.

Dressing: In a small bowl, combine the apple cider, dijon mustard, olive oil, pepper and salt, mix well to combine.

Mix it all together: In a large serving/mixing bowl, combine the kale, wheat berries, butternut squash, onion, pomegranates, optional parsley and dressing, toss well to combine. Add extra salt and pepper to taste.

Serve warmed, at room temperature or chilled. Tastes great with a slice of freshly cut crusty bread. Enjoy!

Serves 6

Notes

If using different wheat berries, cook according to package directions, and add an extra cup of water.

Use farro or barley in place of the wheat berries if you prefer. Cooking times of farro and barley may vary so adjust and cook according to package directions. You can still add the kale at the end. Just be sure to put the lid on for a few minutes to help stem the kale.

Feel free to use baby kale instead. No need to cook the baby kale. Simply add it to the mixing bowl with everything and combine.

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13 Comments

  1. It was really good! I had dried cherries and used that instead if pomegranate seeds. Going to make this again for Christmas dinner this year

  2. Brenda Hokanson says:

    Wondering how well this will last as a meal prep & eaten the following day or two. Maybe I could add the pomegranate seeds after re-heating meal.

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      It should taste great for meal prep! The pomegranate seeds can be warmed with the salad or added as garnish just before serving. You can always try both ways to see which you prefer. Enjoy!

  3. This looks delicious!! I see bags of dried pomegranate seeds – is this what you used?

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      We used packaged fresh seeds that can be found in the chilled fruit section. You may have to source them as some stores don’t carry them, but ask. I know Trader Joe’s, Sprouts, Whole Foods, Roots, and a few regular grocery stores do have them in stock, almost all year around. I hope that helps!

  4. Marci Mayer says:

    Hi I was wondering for this recipe is it two cups cooked wheat berries or two cups dry?

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      It’s 2 cups of dry wheat berries. I’ve updated the recipe ingredient, so you’ll see to use dry. Thanks for asking the question and pointing it out, Marci! Let me know if you have any other questions. Enjoy the wheat berry salad!

  5. Constance says:

    I am fighting breast cancer, had chemo yesterday and made this this morning. It hit the spot! I changed up the wheat berries for quinoa and the kale for spinach because that’s what I had but it was still really yummy. I sprinkled pepitas on top. I am changing my diet for the better considerably and your site is so inspirational. Thanks so much! BTW I tried to follow you through Bloglovin and you never appear on my feed.

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Your substitutes sound perfectly delicious! I’m wishing you the best in your journey to be cancer free. You can do it! So glad my site has been an inspiration to you. It truly makes my day! :)

      Hmm, not sure about the Bloglovin feed, it should work. You can always sign up for emails too!

      Cheers to you and your new eating habits. It’s not so hard once you get the hang of it. :)

  6. delicious looking food says:

    I know that this is unusual, but I dislike red onion–would green onion taste okay?

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Yes, they will be fine, just cook them gently. I would also highly recommend shallots if you like them. They would be the perfect replacement. But, the green onion will work fine too. Enjoy! :)

  7. Barbara Lawson says:

    Just finished making this! OMG! This is one of the best things I have ever eaten in my life!!! It was easy to make too. If I was served this in a gourmet vegetarian restaurant, I would have been blown away–never mind that it was in my own kitchen. I suppose it didn’t hurt that it’s cold and rainy here today and this really hit the spot. This recipe will now be one of my standard go-to favorites! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Oh my, that is about the best compliment ever! I’m so over joyed that you loved the salad. I thinks it’s pretty great myself. Thank you so much for taking the time to share your thoughts! Cheers :)

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