An easy Autumn Crunch Pasta Salad to use all of those wonderful fall fruits and veggies. Colorful, crunchy, packed with flavor and so good, you will want to eat it every day! Fluffy pasta, tart crisp apples, and pears nestled in a bed of dark leafy kale and Brussel sprouts and topped with nuts and feta cheese. Dressed all up with olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, and honey.
It’s probably apparent that I love vegetables with kale being one of my top fav’s. I also love fall, running in the crisp cold air, and the presence of the holidays that are right around the corner. All of these make this Autumn Crunch Pasta Salad appropriate this time of year and one of my best yet!
Match this salad with this Pesto Quinoa With Roasted Vegetables, and you have two very healthy and delicious side dishes that you can serve with any meal.
What is in this autumn crunch pasta salad? Sturdy, dark green kale, Brussel sprouts, topped with sweet sliced apples and pears, fluffy bow-tie pasta, creamy feta cheese, crunchy sunflower seeds, pecans, and tart dried cranberries. Dressed generously with a nice glug of olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, and a drizzle of honey. A bright taste of fall all in one beautiful salad.
I love this salad so much! I think I could actually eat it every
What to expect from this incredible
- Hearty, satisfying and so good for you!
- Easy assembly and dressing
- A burst of fall produce that is in season and packed with flavor
- Tart, sweet, crunchy, and tangy all at once.
- A fantastic statement salad – Perfect for meal prepping or entertaining
How to make this amazing Autumn Crunch Pasta Salad
Start with cooking the pasta according to the package instructions. If you prefer more al dente pasta, then cook the pasta for 1-2 minutes less time than the package instructions. After you cook the pasta, drain the pasta, then let it cool completely.
What kind of pasta should you use? I used mini bow-tie pasta but you can use any type of small pasta you have on hand.
While the pasta is cooking prepare the dressing and the rest of the ingredients.
For the dressing, I kept it simple and just combined some excellent quality olive oil, vinegar (you can use red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar), fresh lemon juice (you could also use the juice from one large orange), a sweet drizzle of honey, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper.
To prep the rest of the ingredients, I sliced the apples and pears and Brussel sprouts, and then rinsed, chopped, and massaged the kale.
To massage the kale, just chop it up after you rinse it, add it to a large bowl, drizzle it with a little olive oil or lemon juice along with a pinch of salt and pepper. Use your fingers or kitchen tongs to massage it for about 1-2 minutes to break down the fibers. This will make it softer and easier to eat and digest.
Build the salad – Layer the chopped dark kale in a salad bowl or platter, top with sliced Brussel sprouts. Nestle in the sliced apples and pears, add in the cooked pasta and toss. Then sprinkle on the sunflower seeds, chopped pecans, crumbled feta cheese, dried cranberries, and pomegranate seeds.
Dress and Serve – Dress the salad with a generous glug of good olive oil, red wine vinegar, a squeeze of lemon juice, a drizzle of honey, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Serve cold and enjoy!
Almost too beautiful to eat! Almost, haha!
I hope you try this recipe. If you do, then please leave a rating and comment below.
If you are looking for more Mediterranean inspired recipes, then you will love this Roasted Mediterranean Cauliflower Rice With Chickpeas.
Here are some other incredible healthy salad recipes you may also enjoy
- 2 bunches of dark leafy kale (lacinato/dinosaur kale) - about 6 cups chopped
- 1 cup sliced Brussel sprouts
- 2 cups cooked (al dente) bowtie pasta - you can use any type of small pasta
- 1 large apple sliced - or 2 small apples sliced
- 1 large pear sliced - or 2 small pears sliced
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans
- 1/4 cup toasted sunflower seeds
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1/8 cup pomegranate seeds
- 2 tablespoons good quality olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- The zest and juice of 1 lemon or the zest and juice of 1 small orange
- 2 tablespoons local honey
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- Layer the kale, Brussel sprouts, cooked pasta, apple, and pear in a large salad bowl.
- Sprinkle in the chopped pecans, sunflower seeds, dried cranberries, feta cheese, and pomegranate seeds.
- Drizzle the whole salad with 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, the zest and juice of 1 lemon or orange, and a nice drizzle of honey. Season with salt and pepper and lightly toss.
- Serve cold and enjoy!
- This salad is perfect for meal prep and will last in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Add any proteins you like to make this a complete meal. I love to add some crispy tofu or roasted chickpeas.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 224 Total Fat: 8g Saturated Fat: 2g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 6g Cholesterol: 4mg Sodium: 304mg Carbohydrates: 33g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 10g Sugar: 14g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 8g