Butternut Squash Cranberry Salad & Orange Cinnamon Dressing

Morning! Hope your Monday’s off to a great start!

Today is THE last day at my job! I have a dentist appointment this morning, a separation meeting after then heading to my firm’s office to turn in my equipment. I’m scheduled to start my new job next Monday, but they’re trying to see if they can get me in tomorrow. Stay tuned….

I have something beautiful to share with you guys today that might make us all feel better about it being Monday. Now I know I’ve been teasing you with pictures of this salad for weeks. It’s about time I share it with you! I honestly thought you’d be more interested now that it’s fall. You guys know I’m obsessed with zucchini and notorious for sneaking it in my recipes. I can’t get enough of it. In fact, a few months ago when I was re-branding my blog for legal reasons and scrambling to come up with a new name I wish I would have had zucchini on my mind. You might now be reading Fit Zucchinilicious or Zucchini Fitalicious instead of Skinny Fitalicious.

With all my obsessiveness over zucchini, one would think I’ve tried every kind of squash to be tried. Not true. Not even remotely true. Until now, I never thought about doing anything with butternut squash other than using it as a fall decoration with other oddly shaped squash in a basket on my front porch. Because let’s be honest, butternut squash does have a sort of creepy shape. It’s not something I see at the market and think “I must eat that now.” But my Mom taught me to never judge an outfit by the way it looks on a hanger.

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See the thing about me is I’m a creature of habit. I know that is said about everyone, but I’m a creature of habit to the millionth. Schedules and habit keep me comfortable like a baby swaddled in a blanket. The goofy thing is I’m not so habitual when it comes to my food. Sure I have a rotation of recipes I make regularly and it’s nice being able to toss something quick together without thinking because I’ve done it a thousand times.

This year I’ve been venturing outside my normal meals and trying different things. The blog has been one reason for that, but the main reason is I’m home now. Traveling weekly for several years didn’t give me the opportunity to experiment with food and meals. Now that I’m working local, all I can think of are all the wonderful and beautiful muffins meals I can make. I’m glad I listened to my Mom otherwise I never would have tried butternut squash and make a gorgeous salad.

Let us take a moment to adore this beauty. 

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I must confess something. Cutting, peeling and cubing butternut squash is no day at the beach. It’s a small battle and I’m surprised I didn’t lose a finger or two in the process. If you’re accident prone or have weak knives, you may want to consider buying pre-cut just to be safe. Pre-cut butternut squash is everywhere these days. You can find it in the frozen vegetables section or some markets even have it fresh cut with the produce.

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I have another confession to make. You will fall in love with this salad at first bite. The cinnamon, cranberry and warm, juicy squash will melt as it hits your tongue. You won’t be able to stop at one bite and you won’t be willing to share either.

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Top your salad with a homemade sweet orange citrus dressing and you will have a little party in your mouth. Do not. I repeat. Do not skimp on the dressing. It’s quick and easy to make so no excuses. It’s also the icing on the cake salad.

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This salad is perfect and although I’ve been eating it all summer it feels like fall salad. Warm, light yet oh so filling. It’s also packed with vitamin C to build your immune system before winter hits. I’m so glad we eat with our eyes and our mouths because this loveliness belongs in a museum and my belly. Hope you love it!

butternutsquashsalad 

Butternut Squash Cranberry Salad & Orange Cinnamon Dressing
Serves 1
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
40 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
40 min
Salad
  1. 2-3 cups cubed butternut squash
  2. Cinnamon
  3. Salt & pepper
  4. EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
  5. Lettuce
  6. Craisins
Dressing
  1. juice of 1 fresh orange
  2. 2 tbsp EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
  3. 1 tbsp maple syrup, no sugar added
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Place cut butternut squash on a prepared baking sheet
  3. Spray with nonstick cooking spray
  4. Sprinkle well with cinnamon and salt/pepper to your desire
  5. Roast squash 35-40 minutes in the oven until very tender
  6. While squash is roasting, mix ingredients for the dressing together in a mason jar or bowl and refrigerate until ready to eat
  7. Assemble the salad by placing butternut squash on plate of lettuce, add craisins & dressing
Notes
  1. 282 calories per serving
  2. Dressing & squash can be refrigerated a few days & make delicious leftovers
Skinny Fitalicious http://skinnyfitalicious.com/
By the way if anyone in the Phoenix area is interested in a 5k or half marathon next month, Y Race Phoenix is on 10/18. You can get $5 off your registration using code WRECKINGROUTINE from the lovely Brooke over at Wrecking Routine.

What’s your favorite squash? How do you like to sneak it in your meals? What’s one habit or routine you will never break? What’s your next race? 

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