Caramelized Apple Salad with Butternut Squash

By Ann Fulton

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I am so pleased to introduce a guest post from Audra of Cherished Bliss.  You may be familiar with Audra as the author of Once a Mom Always Cook but, as you will read, Audra is joining forces with another gifted cook who she knows quite well.  Audra has been a respected  friend since I began my food blog and she was very kind to share one of her favorite quinoa recipes with all of us!

Hello Fountain Avenue Kitchen readers! My name is Audra, and I currently blog over at along with my sister, Ashley. For the past two years I have been the sole voice behind Once a Mom, Always a Cook where my primary focus has always been creating family recipes. At Cherished Bliss, my plan is to continue sharing old family recipes and new favorites that I pick up along the way. I would be delighted for you to stop by and visit anytime. Today I am honored to share a new fall favorite recipe with you, Caramelized Apple and Butternut Squash Quinoa Salad. This quick and easy recipe blends wonderfully with Ann’s Spiced Rub Chicken and Everything Sauce, which my family absolutely adores. I am very excited to share this recipe with you, so let’s get started…

Caramelized Apple Salad with Butternut Squash
Yields 8 servings.
  • 4 cups quinoa, cooked (see notes)
  • 3 cups butternut squash, diced into bite size pieces
  • 3 cups apples (2 medium size apples), diced into bite size pieces
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups toasted chopped pecans, for garnish
  1. First rinse butternut squash and dry. Pierce the butternut squash with a knife in multiple places all around the squash. Place on a paper towel and microwave on high for 4-5 minutes. Just enough to soften the squash so you can comfortably cut, slice, and peel without struggling.
  2. Once the butternut squash is done peel, cut open, clean out center, and dice into bite size pieces.
  3. Next, peel (optional) and core apples. Dice apples into bite size pieces
  4. In a large saute pan melt butter over medium heat.
  5. Add diced apples and butternut squash.
  6. Sprinkle brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt over the mixture.
  7. Combine all ingredients and cook over medium heat for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  8. Turn off heat, cover with lid and let the mixture sit for another 5-7 minutes.
  9. In a large serving bowl gently combine the caramelized apples and butternut squash with the quinoa. Garnish with toasted pecans. Best if served warm.
  10. Directions for toasting pecans: Heat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and evenly spread 2 cups of chopped pecans on baking sheet. Mist with cooking oil and toast for 5-10 minutes, stirring half way through.
  • I cook my quinoa in vegetable broth to add more flavor. For this recipe, I use 1 1/2 cups quinoa to 3 cups broth.
  • Also, you may leave the apple peels on to add more natural beauty this this dish. I used honey crisp apples in my recipe, but you may use any variety of apples you wish.
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If you are looking for more ways to prepare quinoa salad check out my recipe for Black Bean and Corn Quinoa Salad.

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