Warm Pumpkin and Kale Salad With Agave Mustard Dressing

Makes 4 servings

You probably aren’t craving salads with the cooler weather, but this Warm Pumpkin and Kale Salad will change your mind. The heat from the warm pumpkin atop the baby kale gently wilts the greens yet leaves them a bit crispy and crunchy. The dried cranberries add a lovely holiday feel to the dish.


  • ½ pound (a bit over a cup) fresh pumpkin meat (or butternut squash), cubed into bite-size chunks as evenly sized as possible
  • ½ tablespoon olive or coconut oil
  • 4 cups (about 4 large handfuls) baby kale
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries
  • ⅓ cup walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon pulp-free orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon light agave syrup (or honey)
  • ½ tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • Freshly cracked black pepper and salt


Preheat oven to 375° F.

Place the pumpkin cubes onto a sheet pan or baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Stir well to incorporate and ensure the cubes are coated with a bit of oil. Bake until soft and fork tender, about 20 to 25 minutes.

While the pumpkin is roasting, divide the kale greens as evenly as possible among 4 plates.

Make the dressing by combining all the ingredients into a measuring jug and whisking well. Set aside.

Once the pumpkin is cooked and still warm, plate it on top of the kale greens, again dividing among the 4 plates as evenly as possible.

Scatter the dried cranberries and walnuts on top, along with a bit of freshly cracked black pepper and a bit of salt, if desired.

Give the dressing a good whisk before drizzling it on top of the salads.

Alternatively, serve on the side so everyone can dress their own salad. Enjoy straight away, while the pumpkin is warm.

Nutrition Analysis: 210 cal, 15 g fat, 0 mg chol, 65 mg sodium, 18 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 13 g sugar, 3 g protein.

Jilly Lagasse began cooking as a child when her father, Chef Emeril Lagasse, gave her a set of chef’s whites and let her help in the pastry and dessert department in one of his restaurants. She was diagnosed with celiac disease in 2004 and has written two gluten-free cookbooks with her sister, Jessie Lagasse Swanson, as the duo The Lagasse Girls, www.lagassegirls.com. She splits her time between New Orleans and New York doing special cooking events and gluten-free pop-ups.