Warm Autumn Salad

Last Updated:
July 20, 2023

This warm autumnal salad wraps a bevy of flavors in a very healthy package, making a great side dish for most any meal!

Jump to recipeWarm Autumn Salad

Once the oppressive heat goes away and the weather cools, salad season is officially over. Or, at least, that's how it feels. Romaine simply doesn't taste as good when there's a chill outside.

Autumn presents the perfect opportunity to get creative and push the boundaries of salad. Rather than going for room temperature lettuce with summery, chilled toppings, we're here to offer you an alternative that's great on many counts: it showcases the season's best vegetables, capitalizes on classic salad ingredients (yes, even a vinaigrette), and warms you up from the inside-out with every bite. What's not to love?

Read on for the recipe! We have a feeling you'll be referring back to it quite often...

Warm Autumn Salad

This warm autumnal salad wraps a bevy of flavors in a very healthy package, making a great side dish for most any meal!

Prep time
20 minutes
cook time
30 minutes
total time
50 minutes


  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 1/2 lb string beans
  • 2 large zucchini
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 3-4 small shallots
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 5 oz bunch of kale
  • 5 oz bunch of spinach
  • Sea salt
  • Cracked pepper
  • Lemon wedge
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and prepare your vegetables for roasting. Wash all the vegetables aside from the shallots. Cut the cauliflower head into smaller pieces, snip off the ends of the green beans, slice zucchini into half vertically and then into chunks 1/2-inch in width, gently halve the cherry tomatoes with a sharp knife, and halve the shallots. Place all the chopped vegetables in a large bowl.
  2. Mince three cloves of garlic (either with a garlic press or by finely dicing). Prepare the balsamic vinaigrette by whisking balsamic, olive oil, garlic, oregano, and salt together. Pour the vinaigrette over the veggies in a large bowl and mix until evenly coated. Generously salt and pepper, mix, and repeat again. Spread the veggies over two sheet pans and place in the oven for 25-30 minutes, stopping to flip veggies and swap oven wracks about 15 minutes through. When finished, veggies should be browned at varying degrees and lightly crisped. Feel free to take them out up to 5 minutes before, or leave them in for up to 5 minutes longer, according to your preference.
  3. Wash and drain kale and spinach. When veggies are about 5 minutes out, place 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Wait a minute or so for the oil to heat, then add the kale. Sautée for about 2 minutes, then add spinach and continue cooking for another minute until greens have begun to wilt. They should not be cooked down. Generously salt and pepper, then take off the heat. Place immediately in a large serving bowl to avoid further wilting. Squeeze with a lemon wedge.
  4. When the veggies are done, transfer them to the serving bowl of sautéed greens, being careful not to burn yourself. Using serving spoons, fold veggies into greens until they're evenly incorporated. Serve soon after, while the salad remains warm. Enjoy!

Additional Notes:

  • Pro Tip: If a 50-minute prep and cook time seems long for a side dish, think again; while the veggies are roasting in the oven, you're free to work on other dinner components!
  • Pantry Items Used

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