Harvest Quinoa Salad with Candied Walnuts

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This is fall in a bowl if ya ask me! I love prepping quinoa to have for the week because its so easy to pair with any protein! I haven’t made any in a long time, so I decided to switch it up a bit and add the typical fall flavors like butternut squash, cranberries, you name it ;) AND candied walnuts. When I was little, I used to get the candied walnuts at any sports game..you know the ones where they have walnuts, pecans, cashews all covered in all the sugar but the smells get you EVERY time!? Yeah that was me. But they’re so dang good. So I decided to make my own & let me tell ya these are good!! I mean I don’t think they can beat the ones at the ballpark, but at least they make ya feel better after you eat them. Anyways, I hope you love this salad! It would even be perfect for Thanksgiving & I’m sure the whole family will love it!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cooked quinoa

  • 1/2 cup roasted butternut squash

  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries

  • 1/4 c pumpkin seeds

  • 1/2-1 cup walnuts

  • 1 tbsp avocado oil

  • 1 tbsp maple syrup

  • 1 tbsp coconut sugar

  • 1 tsp cinnamon sugar (I used Primal Palate)

  • 1 lemon

  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard

  • Sea salt/pepper

Directions:

  1. Cook quinoa according to package

  2. While quinoa is cooking, prepare walnuts & roasted butternut squash. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  3. Roast butternut squash for 30 minutes. Flipping half way through

  4. Place raw walnuts on the pan and cook for 8 minutes. While walnuts are cooking, mix the coating by combining avocado oil, maple syrup, and coconut sugar. Once walnuts have finished cooking, coat with mixture & place back in the oven for 8 more minutes. Top with cinnamon sugar

  5. Combine dressing for quinoa. Feel free to use whatever you like here. I like making my own, but I also like using a balsamic vinaigrette or the Primal Kitchen Honey Mustard. For this combine juice of 1 lemon, dijon mustard, 1/4 tsp maple syrup, salt & pepper.

  6. Combine all ingredients: cooked quinoa, roasted butternut squash, cranberries, pumpkin seeds, walnuts & quinoa dressing.