Roasted butternut squash with pomegranate and citrus dressing

Roasted squash with citrus dressing: The refreshingly tangy and mildly sweet, citrus dressing used in this dish, makes a perfect foil for the earthy flavor of the roasted butternut squash. The fresh, pomegranate seeds add a pleasing crunch, and their vibrant, jewel tones impart a visual appeal, making this a great dish for your holiday gatherings as well. Packed with phyto-nutrients, this dish is surprisingly simple to make. If you want a truly “no-fuss” recipe, just skip steps 4 and 5 while preparing the salad.


Roasted butternut squash with pomegranate and citrus dressing. © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE.


Pomegranates are abundant in antioxidants. Copyright, December, 2015, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE.

Have you ever used pomegranate or roasted squash in salads, or orange juice in your home made salad dressings?? 

Serves 4

For the dressing:

  • 5 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil


  • Whisk above ingredients until well blended. Set aside.

Ingredients: For the salad

  • 1/2 of a medium-size butternut squash
  • 1 small orange, peeled and chopped into segments
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 3 tsp (1 tbsp) olive oil + 1 teaspoon for greasing baking sheet
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Seeds from one medium pomegranate
  • 2 tbsp freshly chopped, mint leaves


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Grease a rimmed baking sheet with the one teaspoon of oil and set aside.
  3. Cut butternut squash crosswise into semi-circle or half-moon sections.

    Figure 1 © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE. Squash in cut into a half moon circles.

    Figure 1:  Squash is cut into half-moon circles. © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE. 

  4. With a melon baller, press down with one hand on the straight edge of the cut squash  firmly.

    © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE. Press melon baller down firmly to scoop out an arc.

    Figure 2: Press melon baller down firmly to scoop out an arc. © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE. 

  5. Keep pressing down until you are able to cut a semi-circle arc out of the squash segment (see figures, 1, 2 and 3).

    © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE

    Figure 3 © Copyright, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE

  6. Transfer the cut squash to a medium bowl.
  7. Add the diced onion to the squash in the bowl, and toss with the remaining olive oil, salt and pepper.
  8. Spread over the baking sheet and roast in the oven for 30-35  minutes, turning about 3-4 times during the process, so that the squash gets some brown spots, but does not char.
  9. Remove from the oven and transfer roasted squash and caramelized onions to a serving bowl.
  10. Add orange segments and pomegranate seeds.
  11. Toss with prepared dressing.
  12. Garnish with mint leaves and serve immediately.

A Registered Dietitian’s tip: Pomegranates are nutrient powerhouses. Packed in antioxidants and phyto-nutrients, they contain punicic acid, a type of fatty acid that is a key constituent of pomegranate seed oil (PSO),  and has been shown in clinical studies to favorably impact cholesterol levels. In addition, pomegranate peel extract contains several compounds with antioxidative properties. Emerging  evidence shows that the  addition of pomegranate peel extract to foods may reduce oxidative stress in the gut as well. Like all antioxidants, pomegranate seeds and the juice leave a stain behind. 

Butternut squash: Butternut squash is abundant in an antioxidant called beta carotene, which is a Vitamin A precursor in the body. Antioxidants help fight free radicals that can cause oxidative damage to the body, eventually leading to chronic disease. High in fiber, squash is also rich in potassium, a key mineral for regulating your blood pressure.

Oranges:  Oranges are high in fiber, potassium and Vitamin C, another potent antioxidant. This delicious salad, with it’s abundance of nutrients and visual appeal is sure to beckon your guests back for seconds!


Copyright, December 2015, Sangeeta Pradhan, RD, LDN, CDE


roasted squash label

Nutrient Analysis: is an independent website that is not in any way affiliated with this blog.

Recipe inspired by Eating Well magazine, November 2015 edition.

Disclaimer: This blog is strictly for informative purposes, and should not be construed as medical advice. Please refer to your physician or registered dietitian for recommendations tailored to your unique needs.


About Sangeeta Pradhan RD, CDE

Hi there! Welcome to my blog! If you are confused with all the conflicting messages you get bombarded with every day on carbs, fats, proteins, gluten and anything you can think of related to nutrition, look no further! The purpose of my blog is to cut through all this clutter, utilizing scientific, evidence based guidelines to help you, the consumer, navigate the complex, dietary landscape, and thus empower you to make informed decisions.
This entry was posted in Get cooking, Salads and starters and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to Roasted butternut squash with pomegranate and citrus dressing

  1. Leyla says:

    It looks truly delicious 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sangeeta, this recipe looks amazing! I can’t wait to try it this Christmas. 🙂


  3. Love butternut squash, grow it in the garden every year. Make a custard out of it like you would pumpkin. Also make a butternut squash soup. Both are delicious. Thanks for stopping by my blog. You have a very nice blog, I am going to check out more of you recipes. Thanks

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Glad you liked it, Jennifer! So simple too! Let me know how it turns out😊.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks,Lizzie! Love the idea of making a custard out of butternut squash. That’s so clever! I have a butternut squash recipe on the blog too, but the custard is ingenious!Thanks for stopping by😊.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thank you I will 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  7. People do not realize that butternut squash is so good for you. It also keeps for a long time, which is nice.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Absolutely right; thank you for the feedback:)

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Sheryl says:

    This looks really good. I’m going to have to try this recipe. Winter squash is my husband’s favorite vegetable and I’m always look for new recipes.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. dgkaye says:

    Sounds yum. I’m marking down the recipe. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Good to know that, Sheryl. Let me know how it turns out. I forgot to mention under “Registered Dietitian’s” tips that you can also try adding 1-2 tbsps of chopped pecans or walnuts for an extra crunch and anti- inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids. Cheers!


  12. Great! Thanks, Debbie. You can also add a tablespoon of chopped walnuts for an extra crunch and anti- inflammatory omega-3s! Take care😊

    Liked by 1 person

  13. dgkaye says:

    Great idea! Thanks! 🙂


  14. balroop2013 says:

    Hi Sangeeta,

    Thanks for nudging me here. You have a wonderful blog, one of my favorite niches…eat healthy. I love salads and would definitely try this recipe.
    Thanks for sharing so many informative facts about food. I love pomegranates…they remind me of the two little trees we had in our garden but I avoided this fruit till I discovered the way to take out those lovely little red beads…we used to call them as children!
    Have a wonderful weekend. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Hi Balroop,
    Thank you for your kind words. I intersperse scientific, evidence-based articles on nutrition, with recipes that incorporate the underlying principles behind what nutrition is really all about, minus the hype of course:))

    I will be looking forward to reading your inspirational posts! Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Roo's Ruse says:

    Fabulously colorful and sounds delicious. This recipe is on my To Do list this week!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Thank you so much! Enjoy and let me know how it turns out! 😊


  18. Slices of the butternut squash with some herbs sa coriander and cumin wrapped in foil and barbequed is also amazing. It is a very versatile vegetable.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Yes, Gerard, I agree. Very versatile indeed! No dearth of options. Thanks for stopping by😊


  20. Pingback: Gibbs Smack | What Next: Behind Roo's Ruse

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