This Israeli Couscous with Roasted Squash & Apple Cider Vinaigrette has something for everyone! It’s savory-sweet, filled with fun textures and flavors, and features the best of seasonal fall produce. A tangy-sweet apple cider vinaigrette ties everything together. The best part is that this can be made ahead and served warm or chilled. It’s perfect for meal prep!
For the Salad:
- 2 cups butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 cups Israeli couscous
- 1 cup sliced honeycrisp apples
- 2 cups baby arugula
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup pepitas, toasted (pecans or walnuts would also be great here)
- Additional salt and pepper, as needed
For the Apple Cider Vinaigrette:
- 1/4 cup apple cider
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper, to taste
For the Salad:
- Preheat the oven to 400°F and line a large baking sheet with parchment. Add the cubed squash, spreading it out in an even layer. Drizzle over the olive oil, salt, pepper, and cinnamon. Stir the squash on the pan until it is evenly coated in the oil and seasonings.
- Roast the squash for 15-20 minutes or until tender and caramelized in spots.
- Meanwhile, cook the couscous by heating a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add a tiny drizzle of oil to the pan and then add the couscous.
- Cook, stirring constantly, until it is lightly browned and toasted in spots, about 2 minutes.
- Add 3 cups of water and 1 teaspoon of salt. Bring the water to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and cover the pot.
- Simmer over low heat for 15-20 minutes, or until the water is mostly absorbed and the couscous is fluffy and tender. Drain off any excess liquid.
For the Vinaigrette:
- While the squash is roasting and the couscous is cooking, make the vinaigrette by whisking the apple cider, mustard, vinegar, honey, and cinnamon together in a large measuring cup.
- Whisking constantly, slowly stream in the oil until the dressing is emulsified and thick. Season, to taste with salt and pepper.
To Assemble & Serve:
- Add the warm couscous to a large mixing bowl, drizzle over roughly ½ of the vinaigrette, and toss well to combine.
- Stir in the roasted squash, apples, baby arugula, cranberries, pepitas/nuts, and toss to combine.
- Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Drizzle with more dressing, if you prefer.
- Serve immediately while still warm, at room temperature, or chilled.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Category: couscous salad
Keywords: couscous salad, Israeli couscous salad, fall couscous salad, harvest couscous salad, autumn couscous salad, couscous with squash and apples, apple cider vinaigrette