I’m always on the lookout for fresh, new ideas for side dishes. It seems we always get stuck in a side dish rut. My daughter loves butternut squash, my husband loves all of the ingredients to this dish except the squash, and I love how healthy it is. I thought, maybe this could work? I substituted plain yogurt for Greek yogurt. Overall, I enjoyed the salad, but next time I’ll use a little less onion and cilantro. I felt they took over the sweetness of the pineapple, pepper, and squash. It’s definitely a nice dish to bring during the Summer when everyone is expecting the same old potato or pasta salad!

Tropical Butternut Squash Salad



  • 2 lbs (about 1 large) peeled, diced butternut squash
  • 1 large red pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 cup scallions (white and light green parts), sliced
  • 20 oz can pineapple tidbits, drained, juice reserved
  • 1/2 cup shredded, unsweetened flaked coconut


  • 4 oz nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup reserved pineapple juice
  • juice from 1 lime
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • fresh ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro


Preheat oven to 375 F. Spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray and arrange the squash in an even layer. Spray the squash with more cooking spray. Roast for 40-50 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.

Meanwhile, place the coconut in a dry skillet over medium-low heat and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring often, until lightly browned and fragrant. Immediately remove from heat and allow to cool.

Combine salad ingredients in a large bowl.

In a smaller bowl, whisk together the yogurt, pineapple juice, lime juice, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Pour over the squash mixture in the large bowl and gently stir until thoroughly combined. Fold in the cilantro and chill until ready to serve. Yield: 10 servings (about 2/3 cup each).

Nutrition Information (per serving): 130 calories; 2.9 g. fat; 0 mg. cholesterol; 136 mg. sodium; 25.9 g. carbohydrate; 4.2 g. fiber; 3.1 g. protein

Source: Prevention RD, originally from Cara’s Cravings


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