There’s nothing quite like this time of year for the hard-core veggie lover. From roasted root veggies to dark-as-night kale salads, Thanksgiving reminds veggies and omnivores alike just how hearty and filling good vegetables can be. Save those powder puff, feathery green salads for Spring and consider banishing the tired potatoes to non-holiday meals – these rich, fall vegetarian recipes from chef Pamela Salzman will inspire you, look gorgeous on the table, and are sure to fill everyone up!

As is tradition here at The Chalkboard (see last year’s recipes here), we’re featuring these deliciously chic ideas from Jenni Kayne‘s Thanksgiving preparations. Chef Pamela walked a few of Jenni’s gathered guests through these twists on classic recipes below and we’re sharing them with you just in time for planning the big dinner.

Get inspired by Jenni’s tabletop too. We love this mix of wood and burlap, golden leaves and gold flatware. Pop over to Jenni’s blog, Rip+Tan to pick up a few style pointers for next week’s table!

Classic Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
serves 12


8 lbs whole butternut squash, washed well
6 Tbsp unsalted butter
2 Tbsp pure maple syrup
3 carrots, peeled and halved
1 large onion, thinly sliced
10 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock, preferably homemade, divided
pinch cayenne pepper
2 tsp sea salt (double this if your stock is unsalted)


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Cut the squashes in half, lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and discard.

3. Place the squash halves cut-side up in a roasting pan. Divide the butter and maple syrup evenly amongst the squash cavities. Arrange the carrot and onions slices around the squash. Pour 2 cups of stock in the pan and cover tightly with foil. Bake for 2 hours.

4. Remove the pan from the oven and allow the vegetables to cool slightly or enough that you can handle them. Scoop the squash pulp from the skins and transfer to a large soup pot. Add the carrots, onions and cooking liquid from the pan.

5. Add the remaining 8 cups of chicken stock to the pot with cayenne and salt to taste (I usually add 1 tablespoon when I use unsalted stock). Stir well and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes.

6. Puree the soup until smooth in the pot with an immersion blender or in batches in a blender. Taste for seasonings.

Soup can be made up to 2 days ahead and reheated.


Roasted Delicata Squash With Pomegranate-Pistachio Relish
serves 6


2 delicata squash, washed well and cut into rings*
2 Tbsp unrefined coconut oil, melted
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper, to taste

For the relish: (this makes a lot)
2 Tbsp unrefined, cold-pressed olive oil
2 Tbsp unfiltered apple cider vinegar or pomegranate molasses
½ tsp sea salt
1 cup pomegranate seeds
½ cup pistachio nuts, toasted
¼ cup dried currants
2 small shallots, chopped
3 Tbsp fresh mint, chopped


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. Place the squash rings on the baking sheets and brush with melted coconut oil on both sides. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast until tender, approximately 20-30 minutes.

3. While squash is roasting, assemble relish. Whisk the oil, vinegar, and salt together in a medium bowl, add remaining ingredients and toss to combine.

4. Arrange the squash rings on a platter so they are overlapping, and spoon relish mixture on top. Serve immediately or at room temperature.

*To cut delicata into rings, cut in half crosswise through the middle of the squash. Using a spoon, scoop out the seeds from each half, creating a hollow cavity. Cut crosswise into ¼” rings.

Kale Salad with Cornbread Croutons + Spicy Pecans
serves 6


For the cornbread croutons:
½ (or less) of an 8×8 cornbread (recipe here)
unrefined, cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil or melted coconut oil
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

For the sweet & spicy pecans:
1 cup whole pecans
1 Tbsp unrefined coconut oil, melted
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp ground chipotle powder
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp minced fresh rosemary (optional)
1 tsp salt + more for sprinkling

For the pickled onions:
1 small or ½ large red onion, sliced very thinly by hand or using a mandoline
¼ cup unfiltered apple cider vinegar

For the dressing:
2 tsp minced shallot
½ tsp fine sea salt
A few twists of freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbsp raw apple cider vinegar (or the vinegar used to pickle the onions)
2 Tbsp natural-style apple juice, preferably organic
2 tsp 100% pure maple syrup
6-7 Tbsp unrefined, cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil

For the kale salad:
2 bunches black kale (Tuscan, lacinato, or dinosaur kale), about 12-14 ounces, washed and dried
2/3 cup pomegranate seeds or dried cranberries


For the croutons:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut cornbread into 1” cubes or desired size. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet, drizzle lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Bake for 15-25 minutes or until golden brown and slightly crispy. These can be left out to dry out for the rest of the day or can be done days in advance.

For the sweet & spicy pecans:
When croutons are finished, turn the oven down to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, sugar, syrup, spices, rosemary and salt. Drizzle oil mixture over pecans and toss to coat. Sprinkle with additional salt. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until toasted. Can be done the day before.

For the pickled onions:
Place sliced onions in a bowl and cover with the apple cider vinegar. Let sit for 20 minutes. Can be done the day before and refrigerated. Remove from vinegar before adding to salad.

For the dressing:
Whisk all the ingredients in a small bowl until emulsified or place all dressing ingredients in a glass jar with a lid and shake until emulsified. Can be made several days in advance.

To assemble the salad:
Strip the kale leaves from the stems and compost or discard the stems. Finely shred the leaves with a sharp knife. Place in a serving bowl. Add enough dressing to coat the kale lightly. Massage the dressing into the kale leaves with your hands to soften the leaves. Add the croutons, pecans, pickled onions and dried cranberries.

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