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This Harvest Steak Salad with California Grapes is hearty, seasonal and absolutely packed with flavour. Peppery arugula gets tossed with crisp and juicy Grapes From California, shallots and a delicious homemade balsamic vinaigrette. Served over beautifully roasted squash and topped with candied maple pecans and crumbled goat cheese. Best served warm but you can also prepare everything in advance and toss with the dressing immediately before serving.

Harvest Steak Salad California Grapes Easy Recipe Primal Gourmet

What You Need For This Harvest Steak Salad

  • Steak: This salad goes incredibly well with grilled steak. I used a NY strip because that’s what I had on hand, but you can substitute your favorite cut, such as ribeye, tenderloin, top sirloin, skirt steak, Denver or flat iron. You can also try this Harvest Salad with grilled chicken or pork chops.
  • California Grapes: The California Grapes really steal the show here. They add a delicious and unexpected pop of juicy, sweetness with just the right amount of acidity. Grapes from California are incredibly versatile and pair well with a variety of ingredients and flavors. Grab some at your local market and try adding them to your salads or favorite recipe this fall.
  • Squash: Feel free to use a variety of squash. I really like acorn squash (AKA pepper squash) because it has a delicious, natural sweetness without an overwhelming pumpkin flavor. It also presents beautifully when sliced into wedges and roasted until caramelized. You can substitute buttercup, butternut, delicata or even small varieties of pumpkin.
Harvest Steak Salad California Grapes Easy Recipe Primal Gourmet
  • Arugula: Choose a peppery green like arugula to balance the sweetness from the grapes, candied pecans and squash. It also holds up well against the richness of the steak and goat cheese. You can also substitute watercress.
  • Candied Pecans: Warning: the candied maple pecans in this recipe are addictive and super easy to make. My advice is to double the batch so you can snack on some later on!
  • Goat Cheese: This is optional and you can certainly omit it if you want to keep things Paleo or Whole30, but some soft, unripened goat cheese takes this harvest salad to the next level.
  • Shallot: Thinly sliced shallot is another element that will balance the sweetness from the other ingredients. If you don’t have shallot, substitute red or white onion.
  • Good Balsamic Vinaigrette: It’s super easy to make your own balsamic vinaigrette, but feel free to use your favorite store bought one if that’s preferred.
Harvest Steak Salad California Grapes Easy Recipe Primal Gourmet

This recipe was created in partnership with the California Table Grape Commission. All opinions expressed here are the author’s alone.

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Harvest Steak Salad with California Grapes

This Harvest Steak Salad with California Grapes, squash, candied pecans and goat cheese is hearty, seasonal & absolutely packed with flavour.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 4 servings


For the Candied Pecans:

  • 1 cup unsalted pecans
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon flaky sea salt, such as Maldon

For the Balsamic Vinaigrette:

  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup, substitute honey
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 small garlic clove, finely grated or chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

For the Harvest Salad:

  • 1 medium acorn squash, seeded and sliced into 2-inch wedges
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme leaves
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly-cracked black pepper
  • 10- ounce beef grilling steak of choice, such as NY Strip, ribeye, tenderloin, or top sirloin
  • 2 teaspoons avocado oil
  • 5 ounces Arugula
  • 1 medium shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup Red California Grapes, sliced in half
  • 3.5 ounces soft unripened goat cheese


For the Candied Pecans:

  • In a small skillet, combine the pecans and maple syrup. Place over medium-low heat and cook, stirring, until the maple syrup has reduced by ¾ in volume and the pecans start to get sticky. Transfer to a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, spread into a single layer, and season with the flakey salt. Set aside and let cool.

For the Balsamic Vinaigrette:

  • In a large serving bowl, combine the balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, Dijon mustard, garlic, salt and pepper and whisk thoroughly together. While continuously whisking, slowly pour in the olive oil until everything is incorporated. The vinaigrette should be fully emulsified and coat the back of a spoon. Taste for seasoning and adjust with salt and pepper as desired. Cover the bowl and set aside until ready to use.

For the Harvest Salad:

  • Preheat Traeger grill to 425F. Remove steak from fridge one hour before cooking and let it come to room temperature.
  • Add the squash to the sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Add the thyme, ½ teaspoon kosher salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper. Toss to coat and spread out in a single layer. Transfer to oven or Traeger and roast, flipping halfway, until the squash is fork-tender and slightly caramelized, around 40 minutes. Remove squash from heat and tent with foil to keep warm or transfer to the top rack of your Traeger.
  • Raise the heat to 500F.
  • Pat steak very dry with paper towel. Drizzle with avocado oil, massage all over to coat and generously season both sides with salt and pepper. Place onto the Traeger and cook, undisturbed with the lid closed, until grill marks form, around 5 minutes. Flip and cook the other side until grill marks form or the thickest part of the steak registers 132F for a medium-rare center. Transfer steak to a board and let rest 10 minutes before slicing against the grain.
  • Add the arugula, shallots and grapes to the bowl with the vinaigrette and toss to coat. Arrange the squash on a serving platter. Top with the salad and sliced steak. Garnish with goat cheese and candied pecans. Serve warm or prepare all ingredients ahead of time and serve at room temperature.



1. If using a conventional grill: prepare a two-zone heat and cook the squash over indirect heat at 425F. Then, grill the steak over direct, high heat.
2. For oven: roast the squash in a preheated 425F oven on a rack positioned in the top third of the oven.
3. If cooking the steak indoors, you can use a cast-iron, carbon-steel or stainless-steel grill pan or skillet over medium-high to high heat. Avoid non-stick materials because they can start to break down at high heat.
4. If preparing ahead of time, only toss the salad in the dressing immediately before serving.
Tried this recipe? Leave a comment below!

About the Author

Hi, i’m Ronny! In 2013, after a lifetime of struggling with my weight and body issues, I rehabilitated my relationship with food, lost over 40 pounds and completely changed my life.

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