vegan series part 1: butternut squash & tofu salad!

After a couple weeks of being out of town for internships, camps, and family vacations, my friend and I finally got the chance to hang out and do one of our favorite things together: cook! We met up and decided to make a healthy lunch, but weren’t sure what exactly to make, so we thought we would experiment using some healthy ingredients! We went to the grocery store and bought some tofu, butternut squash, and mixed greens, hoping it would make a nice lunch salad.

Here are the ingredients we ended up using:

  • 14 oz package of organic tofu
  • 1 butternut squash, cut into cubes
  • 1 package mixed greens
  • olive oil
  • 5-6 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 4-5 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • juice from 1/2 lemon
  • salt & pepper

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Start by cutting the tofu into small cubes around this size.

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Then, put it in a sauce pan on medium heat with 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil.

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Allow the tofu to fry up for around 3-4 minutes or until they turn golden brown.

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Once they have turned golden brown, add in the soy sauce and allow it to cook/soak into the tofu for another 5-6 minutes. When finished cooking, most of the soy sauce should evaporate or soak into the tofu, leaving little left on the pan. Set the tofu aside when it finishes pan-frying.

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While the tofu is cooking, you can start to roast the butternut squash. If you buy pre-cut butternut squash cubes, it will make this process a lot easier because it is a really tough root vegetable to cut. All you need to do to the cubes is coat them in 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil, add a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper to them, and then put them in a 400 degree oven for 25-30 minutes until they are soft and tender!

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Next you will need to make a quick dressing for the salad. All I did was combine equal parts (5-6 tablespoons each) balsamic vinegar and olive oil with lemon juice, salt & pepper.

Once all the components are finished, you can start to assemble the salad!

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First, place a handful of the mixed green into a bowl. The greens I used had a mixture of baby lettuces and radicchios but you can also use arugula, spinach, or other greens!

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Next I added in the pan-fried tofu and roasted butternut squash.

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Finally, I drizzled on 2-3 spoonfuls of the balsamic dressing on top of the salad! It is ready to be served! Once we finished making this salad, we realized it was vegan so I decided to make it my first post in a vegan series that I’m starting on my blog!

In order to store leftovers, I put the salad into the mixed greens plastic box, which is also a great place to pack it for lunch so you don’t have to waste another container!

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