What do you get when you blend a superfood like kale with savory roasted acorn squash topped with parmesan crisps, sliced apples and sweet garlic vinaigrette? A delicious meal that will quickly become a family favorite. This recipe is one of my go-to favorites during the cold months! Packed with nutritious seasonal ingredients, this salad is perfect for lunch, dinner or pairs well with a main dish when hosting an upscale dinner. 

Serves 2
Total time: 45 minutes


  • Kale, 12 ounces
  • 1 Acorn squash (halved and sliced into ½” wedges)
  •  1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 2-3 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan, shredded
  • 1 Fuji apple, sliced or diced
  • 1 small Shallot, sliced (if desired)
  • 1/2 cups walnuts or pecans, roasted
  • T.Lish Sweet Garlic


Roast the squash: preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Halve the acorn squash, then scoop out and discard the seeds. Slice the squash into 1/2” wedges. Toss the squash on a baking sheet with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of cayenne, salt, and pepper. Place in the oven for 35-40 minutes, flipping halfway through cooking, until soft and golden brown.

While the squash roasts, make the Parmesan crisps. Line another baking sheet with parchment paper. If you do not have parchment, lightly oil the baking sheet. Place the Parmesan (about 1 heaping teaspoon at a time) onto the parchment to form 2-inch circles, about 1 inch apart. Make sure the Parmesan is layered evenly. Place the baking sheet in the oven for 4-5 minutes, watching constantly, until golden brown. Set aside to cool.

Remove and discard the kale stalk, then tear the kale leaves into bite size pieces. Halve, peel, and mince the shallot.

Toss the kale into the vinaigrette and massage with your hands until the kale softens slightly. Season with salt and pepper, if desired. 

Toss the apple into the kale mixture along with shallot, if desired. Plate the kale salad, then top with roasted acorn squash, roasted nuts and Parmesan crisps.