Pear, Squash and Wheat Berry Salad

IngredientsFruit, Grains
Day PartDinner
Menu PartSalad
Cuisine TypeAmerican

Chef Garrett Berdan, RDN

Squash is taking kale's place as the vegetable that soon will be all over menus, according to several trend forecasters. Here, the butternut variety is roasted and featured in a healthy grain salad that can be prepared ahead and dished out at service, or separated into its components to offer at a build-your-own-bowl station.


5 cups hard red wheat berries
6 lbs. butternut squash, peeled and diced 3/4-in.
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
6 lbs., 12 oz. canned Bartlett pears, drained and diced, juice reserved
3 cups finely diced celery
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries

Pear vinaigrette
1 cup reserved pear juice
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon


  1. Place wheat berries in large pot with 1/2 gallon water. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce to a simmer; continue cooking, covered until grains are tender and chewy, 50-60 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water. Refrigerate in a covered container until cold.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 F. Combine diced butternut squash, vegetable oil, cinnamon, salt and pepper in large bowl. Mix to coat thoroughly. Spread squash on 2 full-size sheet pans, making sure pieces are not crowded. Roast 30 minutes, or until caramelized and tender. Place roasted squash in refrigerator to chill.
  3. Prepare pear vinaigrette: Place all ingredients in blender and blend on high speed until emulsified, about 30 seconds. Chill in covered container.
  4. In large mixing bowl, combine chilled wheat berries, chilled roasted squash, diced pears, celery and dried cranberries. Pour pear vinaigrette over salad and toss gently to coat. Hold chilled until ready to serve.

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