This Roasted Pumpkin Salad is perfect for autumn and it proves that salads can be enjoyed all year round. A bed of leafy greens topped with beetroot, pumpkin and creamy goats cheese for a salad that will convince the biggest salad skeptics. It is an incredible flavour combination, but easy to adapt too.
When summer ends, we throw ourselves in to all things pumpkin. There is so much more you can do with them than just carve them and put in your window. Roasting is our favourite way to eat pumpkin, as it gets lovely and soft in the middle, but perfectly crispy on the outside.
Serve it as a main or a side dish, this is a hearty and filling salad that can be enjoyed all year long. You can either serve it warm (our preference) or at room temperature if you were making it in advance.
Why you will love it
- A delicious way to eat pumpkin - If you have only ever had pumpkin pie, or a pumpkin spiced latte, then this is a delicious new way to enjoy pumpkin. Cubes of it roasted to crispy perfection - you can't beat it.
- An autumn salad - Salads don't have to stop when summer ends. This is a lovely warm salad that will see you through the colder months.
- Easy to adapt - Use this as a base recipe and then adapt it with all of your favourite salad ingredients.
- Pumpkin - The star of this salad. We have given all the tips on how to cut a pumpkin below. Pumpkins are more than just for carving at Halloween.
- Lettuce - This is the base of the salad. We used a mixture of butterhead, radicchio and rocket, however you can use any lettuce mixture you like. Use something like romaine or little gem for added crunch.
- Onion - We roasted some red onion along with the pumpkin to add some flavour and extra colour. You could use shallots instead, which would add some sweetness.
- Beetroot - We used already roasted beetroot (not pickled) to save some time, but you could roast some yourself if you prefer.
- Pine nuts - These add lots of extra crunch to the salad. They are expensive though, so you could swap them for pecans, walnuts or flaked almonds.
- Dressing - We made our how mustard and balsamic dressing, however you could use a store bought one - honey and mustard works well. An alternative dressing would be a nice creamy tahini one.
- Goat's Cheese - This just goes so well with the creamy pumpkin. You could swap it stilton or Parmesan shavings.
- Seasoning - Add salt and pepper to taste.
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
Step by step
One: Preheat your oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Put the pumpkin and red onion onto a baking tray with 1 tablespoon of the oil, paprika, cumin and salt and pepper. Mix well and put in the oven until the pumpkin is cooked through, about 40-45 minutes.
Two: In a large bowl, add the lettuce and drizzle with the remaining oil, balsamic and mustard. Mix well so that all the lettuce is coated.
Three: Add the cooked pumpkin and onion and the beetroot.
Four: Transfer to a bowl and top with the goat's cheese and pine nuts.
Health benefits of pumpkin
Pumpkins are great for carving, you can turn them in to purée to make a delicious pie, but did you know that they have so many wonderful health benefits too? One portion has more than 200% of your RDA of vitamin A which is great for your eye site. They are packed full of fibre which means you will stay fuller for longer.
The seeds can help with heart health, as they can reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol. So when you make this, don't throw away the seeds - bake them and snack on them.
Pumpkin is also high in vitamin C an a good source of Vitamin E, iron and folate. It's nutrient dense and low in calories, making it perfect for making a healthy and filling soup.
How to cut pumpkin
- Firstly, stabilise the pumpkin by slicing a little off the top and the bottom.
- Cut the pumpkin in half, and then in quarters so that it is easier to manage.
- Using a metal tablespoon, scrape down to remove all the seeds (but keep them) and the stringy flesh so you have a nice clean looking pumpkin.
- Carefully slice the skin off with a knife or use a vegetable peeler.
- Cut into 2 cm strips.
- Cut into cubes.
What I love most about salads (apart from all the colour and flavour) is that they are so easy to adapt. Once you have your base of greens, which can easily be adapted too, the combination of toppings and dressings is almost endless. Here are some of our favourite ways to adapt this salad.
- Butternut squash - If pumpkin isn't your thing, or it is out of season, then you can swap it for roasted butternut squash instead You could even roast up some sweet potato and use a mixture of the two.
- Roasted vegetables - Whilst you are roasting the pumpkin, you could add some other vegetables to the pan to roast as well. We like bell peppers, courgette and aubergine.
- Nuts - Pine nuts are really expensive and although a little goes a long way, you could swap them for another nut like flakes almonds, walnuts or pecans.
- Cheese - If you want to keep this salad vegan, then skip the cheese. But we love the flavour and texture that topping it with goats cheese gives. You could swap the goats cheese for crumbled stilton, or even parmesan shavings.
- Dressing - We used a balsamic and mustard dressing, but a good alternative would be a creamy tahini dressing that goes so well with the creaminess of the pumpkin.
What to serve it with
You can eat this pumpkin salad as a main meal as it is, or serve it as a side dish. If you are serving it as a side, then we have some suggestions of some main dishes that will go perfectly with this:
- Salmon Fishcakes
- Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
- Hunter's Chicken
- Slow Cooker Honey Mustard Chicken
- Pesto Salmon
- Greek Chicken Skewers
- Lemon and Herb Chicken
Frequently Asked Questions
This is best eaten fresh, as the lettuce will get soggy after it is dressed if it is left too long. However, if you have leftover of the roasted pumpkin then it can be stored in an air tight container in the fridge for 2 days.
Yes, this is a delicious gluten free salad. Just make sure that there is no cross contamination from other ingredients.
This is a delicious meat free salad and doesn't need any meat, however you could add some leftover shredded chicken for a protein boost.
• Do give this salad a protein boost, stir in some cooked chickpeas. Other beans like butter beans will work too.
• Love spicy food? Add a sprinkling of red chilli flakes on top before serving.
• You can swap the pine nuts for pecans, walnuts or flaked almonds.
More pumpkin recipes
Goat's Cheese and Pumpkin Salad
- 400 g (14 oz) Pumpkin - cut into 2cm cubes
- 1 Red onion - cut into chunks
- 1 tablespoon Olive oil
- 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper
- 0.5 teaspoon Paprika
- 0.5 teaspoon Cumin
- 130 g (2 cups) Lettuce
- 2 Beetroot - cooked and diced
- 30 g Pine nuts
- 60 g Soft goats cheese
- 2 tablespoon Olive oil
- 1 tablespoon Balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- Preheat your oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6.
- Put 400 g Pumpkin and 1 Red onion onto a baking tray with 1 tablespoon Olive oil, 0.5 teaspoon Paprika, 0.5 teaspoon Cumin and 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper. Mix well and put in the oven until the pumpkin is cooked through, about 40-45 minutes.
- In a large bowl, add 130 g Lettuce and drizzle with 2 tablespoon Olive oil, 1 tablespoon Balsamic vinegar and 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard. Mix well so that all the lettuce is coated.
- Add the cooked pumpkin and onion and 2 Beetroot.
- Transfer to a bowl and top with 60 g Soft goats cheese and 30 g Pine nuts.
- Do give this salad a protein boost, stir in some cooked chickpeas. Other beans like butter beans will work too.
- Love spicy food? Add a sprinkling of red chilli flakes on top before serving.
- You can swap the pine nuts for pecans, walnuts or flaked almonds.
The nutritional information provided is approximate and is calculated using online tools. Information can vary depending on various factors, but we have endeavoured to be as accurate as possible.