Butternut Squash Quinoa Bowls
These Butternut Squash Quinoa Bowls are a hearty, healthy and tasty meal. Filled with roasted veggies, marinated kale and a mustard tahini dressing!
Butternut squash is one of my absolute favorite veggies to roast during the colder months. It can take on so many different flavors and goes well on just about anything. It is especially tasty in these quinoa bowls!
I know “quinoa and kale bowls” sounds so basic and boring. But trust me, there is nothing boring going on here.
How to roast butternut squash
The first thing you will need to decide when making this recipe is how to purchase your butternut squash. Whole or pre-cut.
I go with with pre-cut 99% of the time. It is convenient and cuts your prep time way down. But if this isn’t an option, go ahead and buy a whole squash. You will just need to peel it, deseed it and chop it yourself.
Once you have your squash in bite sized pieces, go ahead and give it some seasoning. Load it onto a parchment lined baking sheet and roast it for 20 minutes – flipping halfway. It will be tender on the inside and have a slight crust on the outside. This stuff is good.
How to assemble Butternut Squash Quinoa Bowls
The squash is literally the hardest part of this recipe – and it’s not even hard. While your squash is cooking whip up some quinoa (or buy it pre-made in the frozen section for an even quicker meal), make the dressing, and massage that kale.
In this recipe I decided to massage my kale with avocado instead of lemon juice. It gives it a different texture and adds avocado. I mean, you can’t go wrong.
I like serving these bowls when the squash and quinoa are still warm. That way you have a hot and cold element in the bowls. But you could just as easily let everything cool and serve this as a cold salad. Which is especially nice if you have leftovers. No need to reheat the next day.
Add everything to a bowl, drizzle on some dressing and get to eating. This recipe is literally Fall in a bowl.
Need more recipe inspo? Check these out:
Butternut Squash Quinoa Bowls
FOR THE BUTTERNUT SQUASH
- 2 cups butternut squash
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp oregano
- salt & pepper to taste
FOR THE QUINOA
- 2 cups water
- 1 tsp vegan chicken bouillon* optional
- 1 cup quinoa dry
FOR THE TAHINI DRESSING
- 1/2 cup tahini
- 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp yellow mustard
- lemon juice to taste
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp garlic salt
- pepper to taste
- water as needed
FOR THE SALAD
- 4 cups kale shredded
- 1 avocado
- 1/2 red onion chopped
- lemon wedges, pepper for serving.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Add butternut squash, olive oil, smoked paprika, oregano, salt & pepper to the baking sheet and toss to coat evenly. Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes (flipping halfway).
- To make the quinoa, add the water to a pot and bring to a boil. Rinse the quinoa. Add the bouillon (or a pinch of salt if you aren't using bouillon) to the boiling water followed by the rinsed quinoa. Stir to combine and bring to a boil. Cover, lower heat and simmer until all of the liquid has been absorbed.
- To make the dressing, combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and stir to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Add water until desired consistency is reached. Place in the fridge until ready to serve.
- To marinate the kale, combine the kale, avocado and a pinch of salt & pepper to a bowl. Use your (clean) hands to mash the avocado into the kale. Once combined, place in the fridge until ready to serve.
- To assemble, add a layer of kale to each bowl. Top the kale with some red onion, quinoa, butternut squash and a drizzle of dressing. Serve with lemon wedges and black pepper.
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I liked this dish – but can do with a less mustard in the dressing, personally. I am usually a big mustard fan too. So, that was a bummer. I think my butternut squash was too hard, so may have to remake this to get it right with a softer bite. I am not usually a fan of oregano (unless it’s on pizza or maybe in pozole), and it didn’t do anything positive to the squash for me.
Things I would do differently: add 1/2 the amount of mustard and add no oregano to squash, but maybe a small drizzle of honey. Glad that I tried this dish because I have been trying hard to find yummy kale salads – I did really appreciate and had never before seen someone “massage” their avocado into their greens. Was really silly and fun at the same time so grateful for that messy experience; made me feel like a kid again ha.
I really enjoyed this recipe! It’s a hearty fall lunch. I thought it could use some crunch, so I made some candied pepitas to add in and it was the perfect addition.
Hi Penny – love the addition of pepitas! So glad you enjoyed!
I have so much frozen butternut squash!!! Have you ever roasted it from frozen?! Or put it in the air fryer maybe?!
I haven’t, but the air fryer sounds like a really good option!
I wasn’t sure about a tahini dressing, but this salad was delicious!
So glad you liked it!
I do not like squash, avocado or kale but this dish was excellent!
Haha! Well I’m glad you gave it a try even though those aren’t your favorite ingredients!
I loved this bowl! Delicious! Perfect for fall with butternut squash & such an easy way to get some healthy greens and protein in! Yum! Will make again!
Yay! So glad you liked it!