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Autumn Harvest Bowls with Vegan Pumpkin Vinaigrette

Autumn Harvest Bowls with Vegan Pumpkin Vinaigrette

Around this time of year we start to see new kinds of produce at the store and if you’re anything like me, that might inspire you to get a little Autumn-happy and start buying a ton of random gourds, root vegetables, and cans of pumpkin ๐ŸŽƒ

Standing there, in front of the first display of pumpkins and squash of the season, you may find it easy to think of brilliant recipes to make with an abundance of Autumnal produce. But if you’re really like me, you’ll have already forgotten all of those “brilliant” ideas before you get home.

**Cut to me standing in my kitchen at dinnertime, blankly staring at an uncooked Acorn Squash, seriously considering ordering a pizza ๐Ÿ˜ฌ Who can relate?

Finding myself with an abundance of Autumn produce and no clue what to do with it is pretty much how this flavorful and filling Autumn Harvest Bowl was born...Necessity + an admittedly #Basic love of #Fall is the mother of all invention, is it not?

All jokes aside, this is one delicious salad, but if you’re not big on salads – especially not during comfort food season – make them the way I do: big, hearty, and full of contrasting tastes, textures, and even temperatures so that every bite is flavorful! Contrast is key ๐Ÿ‘Œ

This salad starts with peppery arugula, tart dried cranberries, and crunchy pecans which all get tossed in a simple but mega-flavorful Pumpkin Vinaigrette. Then the dressed greens are topped with crispy potatoes, sweet and spicy squash, and lots of black pepper. And all of THAT gets a finishing sprinkle of vegan parmesan cheese. I told you, I’m not messing around with a boring bowl of unsatisfying lettuce here! This is a sweet and savory bowl of hearty Autumnal goodness and just one bite will make you wish the season lasted all year long.

I really hope that all of my fellow Fall lovers will enjoy this excuse to get carried away with seasonal produce ๐Ÿ˜‚ Happy cooking!

Autumn Harvest Bowls with Vegan Pumpkin Vinaigrette

Nicole Vranjican
Peppery fresh greens topped with crispy seasoned potatoes, sweet and spicy squash, and a drizzle of vegan pumkin vinaigrette.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings


For the Veggies:

  • 3 medium potatoes
  • 2 medium delicata squash or squash of choice
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 3-4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 2 tsp steak or polutry seasoning
  • 1 15oz can of chickpeas rinsed and drained

For the Salad:

  • 6 cups arugula or mixed greens
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans or whole pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • vegan parmesan cheese I used VioLife

For the Dressing:

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp Sriricha hot sauce
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil extra virigin
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg


Roast the Veggies

  • Start by preheating the oven to 375 degrees.
    Chop the potatoes and red onion into large bite sized pieces.
    Cut the squash in half, scrape out the seeds using a spoon, and then slice into thick slices. See the photo for a reference.
    Note: Peel the potato and squash before chopping if desired.
  • Place the squash on a large cookie sheet. Drizzle with the maple syrup and 1-2 tbsp of olive oil. Season with 3/4 tsp of salt, nutmeg, and black pepper then toss to coat.
    On another cookie sheet, add the potatoes and onions. Drizzle with 1-2 tbsp of olive oil and season with steak seasoning and 3/4 tsp of salt. Toss to coat transfer both pans to the oven to bake until fork tender. About 20-30 minutes.
    In the last 10 minutes of baking, add the chickpeas to the pan with the potatoes and onions. Mix well to coat in the seasoning then bake until warmed through. About 10 minutes.

Make the Dressing

  • In the meantime, mix all of the dressing ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth. About 30 seconds. Taste and add salt and pepper if needed. You can also add another splash of maple at this stage if you'd like a sweeter dressing.


  • In a large mixing bowl, add the arugula, pecans, cranberries, Add 1/4 cup of the dressing and a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss well.
    Then divide the salads between 4 plates, top with the roasted veggies and chickpeas, and drizzle on some more dressing. Shave thin slices from a wedge of vegan parmesan on top of each plate using a vegetable peeler or grater.
    Finish with a few grinds of freshly cracked black pepper and enjoy!


Make sure the canned pumpkin you buy is simply pureed pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling. They look so similar and they’re often right next to each other on the shelf!ย 
If you don’t have or don’t like Sriracha, opt for hot sauce that has as a bit of garlicky flavor to it the way that Sriracha does or add in a pinch or two of garlic powder in lieu of hot sauce.ย 
I often double this dressing recipe and keep it in the fridge to use for salads thought the week. The way I see it, it’s just as easy to make one batch and it is to make two or three, so might as well make extra and save sometime later on. The same principle works for the roasted veggies. Sometimes I make more so I can use them for easy dish dishes or to make roasted veggie wraps for lunch the next day.ย 
Don’t have cranberries? You can substitute raisins, dried cherries, dates, dried or fresh apples, or pomegranate seeds instead. The cranberries are my favorite though because they’re both sweet and tart. So great with the savory flavors in this salad.ย 
Keyword autumn harvest bowl, autumn recipes, dinner salad, fall recipes, fall salad, healthy fall recipes, how to cook delicata squash, how to cook squash, maple cayenne roasted squash, roasted vegetables, vegan fall recipes, vegan pumpkin vinairgrette

Nicole Vranjican

Hey! I’m Nicole and I make practical vegan recipes for REAL life. I cook with simple, easy to find ingredients and I’m passionate about creating delicious plant-based meals that everyone will love!

I hope you enjoy my recipes and videos :) Happy Cooking!

Find me on: Instagram


  1. Denise
    October 21, 2020 / 7:48 pm

    Nikki, I tried your trick with roasting acorn squash (markets near me don’t carry delicata squash) with maple syrup, nutmeg, and black pepper and that it tastes so good with the salad!

    • Nicole
      October 24, 2020 / 8:25 pm

      Yum! Love that you used what was available in your area. I love acorn squash too, os I’m glad to know it worked well in this recipe ๐Ÿ˜Š Thanks for letting me know you enjoyed it Denise!

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