Who says you can’t enjoy pasta salad year round? This Fall Pasta Salad recipe is made with tender roasted brussels sprouts and sweet potato, crunchy toasted pecans, and sweet dried cranberries. Paired with my tangy Greek yogurt Poppyseed Dressing for a flavourful and nourishing salad, Thanksgiving side dish, or lunch! Serve it warm or cold – it’s up to you!

bowl of pasta salad with roasted vegetables, pecans, and dried cranberries

Pasta salad isn’t just for warmer weather! I adore a good pasta salad, so I figured “why not make one for fall”?

I’m also a sucker for a good pan of roasted vegetables – especially sweet potatoes and brussels sprouts. I use them in my Warm Roasted Brussels Sprout Salad, which is another fantastic fall salad recipe.

It might seem a little different – but the combination of roasted veggies, rotini pasta, and a tangy poppyseed dressing really hits the spot.

The autumn vegetables and fall flavours make this pasta salad great for Thanksgiving dinner or a holiday potluck. Or you can prep it and enjoy it for lunch for the week!

ingredients measured out in bowls including rotini pasta, brussels sprouts, cubed sweet potato, pecans, dried cranberries, and olive oil

Roasting Brussels Sprouts and Sweet Potatoes:

Step 1 in making this recipe is getting those nutritious veggies roasting!

As a dietitian, I encourage you not to fear roasting your vegetables. Adding some oil and salt makes them taste better, and makes you want to eat more of them!

To do so, just wash and trim the stems off of the brussels sprouts and slice them in half. Scrub your sweet potato and chop it into cubes (feel free to peel the potato or leave the skin on for extra fibre).

Spread the prepped vegetables out on a lined baking sheet, drizzle them with olive oil, and give the a good toss. Sprinkle salt and pepper on top, then they’re ready for roasting.

Pop the baking sheet into an oven that’s been preheated to 400F. Roast for approximately 30-35 minutes, flipping the vegetables halfway.

Toasting the Pecans:

While the fall vegetables roast, toast the pecans. This is really easy to do!

Heat a small pan to about medium-high heat on the stove. Add the raw pecans directly to the pan and stir frequently, allowing them to toast, until browned and fragrant.

Be careful not to let them sit on the heat too long or they will burn!

toasted pecans in a small frying pan

Assembling the Fall Pasta Salad:

Once the veggies are roasted, the pecans are toasted, and the pasta is cooked according to package directions (I don’t think I need to walk you through that, do I?), we can start to assemble the fall pasta salad!

To do so, add your cooked pasta noodles (I like to use a spiral pasta like rotini or fusilli) to a large salad bowl. Follow this with the roasted vegetables, toasted pecans, and dried cranberries.

The last step is to make the Greek Yogurt Poppyseed Dressing, which takes 5 minutes to do! Then pour it over the pasta salad mixture and toss!

Easy Substitution Suggestions:

  • Roasted Vegetables: You can easily swap out the brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes for your favourite autumn veggies like broccoli and/or butternut squash!
  • Nuts: Toast any other nuts that you like for this fall pasta salad. Walnuts or almonds would also be great!
  • Dried fruit: Raisins would be a great substitution for the dried cranberries if you prefer.

To make a vegan fall pasta salad, use a plant-based Greek Yogurt and sweetener of choice in the dressing recipe.

bowl of pasta salad with roasted vegetables, pecans, and dried cranberries tossed in creamy poppyseed dressing

Do I Serve the Fall Pasta Salad Hot or Cold?

Whatever floats your boat! I prefer to let it cool and serve it cold, but you can absolutely serve it warm. It’s delicious either way!

However you choose to serve the pasta salad, it is important that you store any leftovers covered and in the fridge. It will keep well like this up to 5 days.

Connect with Hannah Magee, RD!

I hope you love this recipe as much as I do. If you try it, let me know what you think by leaving a rating and a review in the comments below.

Oh, and be sure to take a photo and tag me at @hannahmagee_rd so I can re-share on my stories!

bowl of pasta salad with roasted vegetables, pecans, and dried cranberries

Fall Pasta Salad with Creamy Poppyseed Dressing

Who says you can't enjoy pasta salad year round? This Fall Pasta Salad recipe is made with tender roasted brussels sprouts and sweet potato, crunchy toasted pecans, and sweet dried cranberries. Paired with my tangy Greek yogurt Poppyseed Dressing for a flavourful and nourishing salad, Thanksgiving side dish, or lunch! Serve it warm or cold – it's up to you!
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Ingredients

For the Roasted Vegetables:

  • 2 cups Brussels sprouts, stems removed and sliced in half
  • 1 1/2 cups cubed sweet potato, peeled or unpeeled
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

For the Pasta Salad:

  • 375g box pasta, cooked according to package directions
  • 1/2 cup pecan halves
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries

For the Poppyseed Dressing:

Equipment

Instructions 

For the Roasted Vegetables:

  • Preheat oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper.
  • Spread the chopped brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes out on a lined baking sheet, drizzle them with the olive oil, and give the a good toss.
    chopped brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes on an aluminum-lined baking sheet
  • Sprinkle salt and pepper on top, then roast in the oven for 30-35 minutes, flipping halfway.
    roasted brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes on an aluminum-lined baking sheet

For the Pasta Salad:

  • While the vegetables roast, cook the pasta according to package directions.
  • Then toast the pecans by heating a small pan to about medium-high heat on the stove. Add the raw pecans directly to the pan and stir frequently, toasting them until browned and fragrant. Be careful not to let them sit on the heat too long or they will burn!
    toasted pecans in a small frying pan
  • Add the cooked pasta noodles to a large salad bowl. Follow this with the roasted vegetables, toasted pecans, and dried cranberries.
    cooked rotini pasta, roasted brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes, toasted pecans, and dried cranberries in a wooden salad bowl
  • Lastly, toss salad with the Poppyseed Dressing.
    bowl of pasta salad with roasted vegetables, pecans, and dried cranberries
Did you make this recipe?Be sure to take a photo and tag me at @hannahmagee_rd so I can see!