Roasted Butternut Squash Kale Sauté

Great side dish for the holidays! Roasted cubes of butternut squashed tossed with balsamic sautéed onions, kale, pecans, dried cranberries.

Roasted Butternut Squash Sauté
Elise Bauer

Looking for a great holiday side? How about a drop dead delicious, healthy kale and squash sauté that is surprisingly easy to put together?

Roast cubes of butternut squash so they get tasty caramelized edges. While roasting the squash, prep the onions and kale and then sauté them with balsamic vinegar, adding the squash, pecans, and cranberries at the end. Simple. Beautiful. Packed with flavor and color.

Roasted Butternut Squash Sauté
Elise Bauer

The balsamic vinegar? It's what makes all the difference. The sweet tartness just intensifies the flavors of the onions, squash and kale.

Oh yeah, it's also vegan. It may even be paleo (if you swap out the sweetened dried cranberries with raisins).

Every year we try to come up with at least one sparkling holiday side that will wow your guests. This year this is it. I'm making it for our Thanksgiving dinner and hope you do too!

Roasted Butternut Squash Kale Sauté

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Servings 4 servings

Time saver: while the squash is roasting, prep the other ingredients.

To make ahead, roast the cubed squash and prep the ingredients, then do a quick sauté before serving.


  • 4 cups 3/4-inch cubes butternut squash (from about 1 3/4 pound whole small butternut squash)

  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1 pinch black pepper

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 large red onion, quartered and sliced (about 2 cups of sliced red onions)

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon)

  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

  • 6 cups (about 1 bunch) kale, center ribs removed and sliced into 3/4-inch pieces

  • 1/3 cup dried sweetened cranberries

  • 1/2 cup slightly broken up pecans

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Roast cubed butternut squash:

    Preheat oven to 425°F. Place cubed butternut squash in a bowl and toss with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Spread out onto a lined baking sheet. Roast in oven for 25 minutes or until the squash is cooked through and browned on the edges.

    Elise Bauer
    Elise Bauer
  2. Sauté onions and garlic:

    minutes into roasting the butternut squash, start on the onions. Heat olive oil on medium high heat in a thick-bottomed 4 to 5 quart pot. Add the sliced red onion and toss to coat. Let cook for 7 to 8 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and cook a minute more.

    Elise Bauer
  3. Add balsamic and kale:

    Add the balsamic vinegar and the shredded kale. Stir until the kale is mixed well with the onions (it helps to use tongs to turn over the kale). Let cook for a minute or two until the kale is just wilted (don't overcook).

    Elise Bauer
    Elise Bauer
  4. Add roasted squash, dried cranberries, pecans:

    Then stir in the roasted butternut squash, the dried sweetened cranberries, and pecans. Add salt and pepper to taste.

    Elise Bauer
Roasted Butternut Squash Sauté
Elise Bauer
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
359 Calories
19g Fat
50g Carbs
7g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 359
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 19g 24%
Saturated Fat 2g 11%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 266mg 12%
Total Carbohydrate 50g 18%
Dietary Fiber 13g 48%
Total Sugars 19g
Protein 7g
Vitamin C 113mg 565%
Calcium 254mg 20%
Iron 4mg 21%
Potassium 1163mg 25%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.