Peppery arugula, sweet delicata squash, and tempeh bacon all topped with a warm pomegranate vinaigrette it's one of our favorite salad combinations! It’s an Arugula Salad unlike any other, guaranteed to become an instant go-to fall and winter salad.
This recipe for the best arugula salad is one of those go-to combinations that we come back to time and time again. It’s delicious enough that we’ll enjoy it as a main dish when we’re craving something lighter, but the flavors go really well next to pretty much all main dishes. It has a really great balance of tart, savory, and sweet flavors, plus some crunch thanks to candied pecans. A homemade warm pomegranate vinaigrette tops everything off perfectly!
What is Delicata Squash?
Delicata squash is a long skinny winter squash with a yellowish colored skin with green stripes. Delicata squash has a delicate sweet creamy flavor and its skin is edible.
What is Arugula?
Arugula is a cruciferous leafy green with a distinctive, peppery flavor. You may have also heard it called rucula, salad rocket, or Italian cress. Arugula can be eaten cooked or uncooked and it’s often used in salads, as part of a lettuce blend, or served on sandwiches or pizzas. We love it as a base for this salad because it perfectly compliments the sweetness of the squash and candied pecans.
Arugula Salad Ingredients
- Squash - There are two options here! You could use roasted delicata squash cut into rings or roasted butternut squash.
- Candied pecans - You could also use pine nuts! We love the sweet crunch from candied pecans though.
- Portabella mushrooms caps - These are the big ones! We love how they can be sliced into long strips.
- Seasonings: salt, pepper, cinnamon, and garlic powder
- Sliced avocado
- Baby arugula
- Homeade Tempeh Bacon Bits
How to Make Arugula Salad
There are a couple of moving parts in this rocket salad, but ultimately it’s pretty simple to pull together! Start by roasting the squash, then baking the tempeh bacon bits. While that’s happening you’ll cook portobello mushrooms on the stovetop. Whisk all of the dressing ingredients in a saucepan until it’s reduced, and then arrange everything in your favorite salad serving dish! Arugula, squash, portobellos, nuts, avocado, and tasty pomegranate vinaigrette.
More Salad Additions
We love making this arugula salad year-round, but it’s especially delicious in the fall and winter! If you want to make this arugula salad all-year-long you could add seasonal ingredients such as:
- Pine nuts
- Dried Cranberries
- Fresh basil
- Roasted tomatoes
- Pickled Onions
- Hard-boiled eggs
- Parmesan cheese
- Feta cheese
Tips for Storing Salad
It’s best to serve this salad immediately after making it, but if you do need to store it’s best to do it in separate airtight containers. This prevents the fresh ingredients from absorbing the dressing and becoming mushy. Keep everything separate and then combine right before serving!
More Arugula Recipes
- Cashew Ricotta Pizza
- Roasted Cauliflower & Spiced Chickpea Salad
- Tomato, Olive, & Cheese Sandwich
- Blood Orange, Avocado, & Pistachio Salad
- Caramelized Figs & Goat Cheese Pizza with Balsamic Glaze
Did you like this Arugula Salad?
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- 1 delicata squash or other winter squash such as small butternut squash, Kabocha squash, or acorn squash, sliced into ¼-inch thick slices. There is no need to peel the delicata squash.
- 2 portabella mushroom caps, cut in half, and sliced
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- ¾ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 3 tbsp pine nuts
- 1 large Hass avocado, peeled, pit removed and diced
- ¾ cup fresh pomegranate seeds
- 5oz baby arugula
- Tempeh Bacon Bits
- Warm Pomegranate Vinaigrette
- 3 tbsp candied pecans
- Preheat oven to 400F. Line 1 large baking sheet with parchment paper
- Place delicata squash slices in a large bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, ½ teaspoon of the salt, ¼ teaspoon of the cinnamon, and ⅛ teaspoon of the black pepper. Mix well so all the squash slices get well coated with olive oil and spices.
- Arrange squash on the baking sheet and bake at 400F for about 25-30 minutes or until tender. Set aside to cool
- In the meantime, heat the remaining one tablespoon of olive oil in a nonstick skillet. Season portabella caps with the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt, ⅛ teaspoon of black pepper, and ½ tsp garlic powder. Cook over medium-high heat for 5-7 minutes or until cooked and caramelized. Set aside to cool
- Arrange washed arugula in a large platter. Top with cooked squash, cooked portabella mushrooms, candied pecans, tempeh bacon bits, avocado, and pomegranate seeds
- Dress it with a warm pomegranate vinaigrette right before serving
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 30 mins
- Category: Salad
- Method: Raw / oven
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: ¼ of the salad without dressing, tempeh bacon or candied pecans
- Calories: 182
- Sugar: 7.8
- Sodium: 450
- Fat: 13.4
- Saturated Fat: 1.9
- Unsaturated Fat: 9.5
- Trans Fat: 0
- Carbohydrates: 17
- Fiber: 5.5
- Protein: 3.5
- Cholesterol: 0
Keywords: Gluten-Free, kosher, healthy,
This post was originally published on November 13, 2012, and has been updated with more useful information and new images.