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overhead shot of the kale Caesar salad in two serving bowls on a blue backdrop

Tahini Kale Caesar Salad with Butternut Squash + Cranberries

  • Author: Allison
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 (generous) servings 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


  • This harvest-inspired tahini kale Caesar salad has roasted butternut squash, cranberries, rustic croutons, and more! It’s the perfect vegan side dish for holiday meals.



Roasted Butternut Squash

  • 4 cups peeled and cubed butternut squash (from 1/2 of a good-sized butternut squash- 1/2-inch cubes)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Pinch each sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Rosemary Thyme Sourdough Croutons

  • 4 cups cubed day-old sourdough bread (1-inch cubes)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Pinch each fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

Roasted Almonds

  • 1/2 cup raw almonds

Tahini Caesar Dressing

  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • Zest of 1 organic lemon
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 1 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce (I used Wizard’s brand)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 medium garlic cloves
  • 1/3 cup water

Everything Else

  • 2 medium bunches green kale (8 loosely packed cups once chopped)
  • 2 ribs of celery, chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup finely chopped red cabbage


  1. Roast the butternut squash: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the squash in a bowl and drizzle with the olive oil. Next, sprinkle with salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and garlic powder. Toss to coat and transfer onto the baking sheet in an even layer. Roast for 25-30 minutes, or until the squash is fork tender and nicely browned on the outside. Remove from the oven and let cool on the pan.
  2. Make the croutons: Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the cubed sourdough bread in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, rosemary, and thyme. Toss to coat. Transfer onto a baking sheet and arrange in an even layer. Bake for 12 minutes, flipping halfway through, or until browned and crispy to your liking.
  3. Roast the almonds: Reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the almonds in a small baking dish and roast for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and chop once cool.
  4. Make the dressing: Place the tahini, lemon juice and zest, nutritional yeast, dijon, capers, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, garlic, and water in a blender. Blend until smooth. Transfer to a jar until you dress the salad.
  5. Make the salad: Chop the kale and place it in a large bowl. Pour the tahini dressing over top and massage the dressing into the kale. Take your time with this to ensure that every leaf gets a nice coating of dressing and becomes tender.
  6. Next, add the chopped cabbage, celery, cranberries, squash, almonds, and croutons. Toss to combine and serve!
  7. You can store leftover salad in an airtight container in the fridge for several days. Because kale is such a sturdy green, it takes awhile for it to get soggy! This salad could double as an amazing lunch, especially if you top it with crispy baked tofu or chickpeas!
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Category: Side Dish, Appetizer
  • Cuisine: Italian-North American

Keywords: tahini kale Caesar salad with roasted squash