Wheat Berries with Pancetta, Roasted Butternut Squash, and Pepitas

October 12, 2016

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes:

This is one recipe I was sad to cut from my and Merrill's new book, A New Way to Dinner. Here, I like to play up wheat berries' nuttiness with sweet, caramelized butternut squash and pepitas, but keep the salad bright with zippy vinegars and mustard in the dressing. You can eat this salad warm or room temperature—what grain salad is any fun cold? And you may find that if you have leftovers, they’ll need a little re-seasoning the next day.

Amanda Hesser

Serves: 4 to 6


  • Salt
  • 2 cups wheat berries
  • 1/4 pound pancetta, cut into 1/4 inch cubes
  • 1 cup leftover roasted butternut squash
  • 1/3 cup pepitas, toasted
  • 2 cups chopped lacinato kale
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
In This Recipe


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the wheat berries and cook until just tender, about 30 minutes. Drain and store in a container in the fridge.
  2. The day of: In a sauté pan, cook the pancetta over medium heat until browned. In a large bowl, toss the pancetta, butternut squash, pepitas, and kale with the wheat berries—mix gently.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the shallot, the vinegars, and the mustard. Season with salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in the olive oil, allowing the dressing to emulsify as you go. Taste and adjust the seasoning until you like it.
  4. Pour the dressing over the wheat berry salad, and gently toss to coat. Let sit 30 minutes before serving.

More Great Recipes:
Salad|Butternut Squash|Grains|Mustard|Shallot|Vegetable|Vinegar|Fall|Winter

Reviews (2) Questions (0)

2 Reviews

Chris G. October 28, 2016
Amanda:<br />I have a question, what is the bowl of green stuff in the picture have to do with this recipe? I sometimes think your food stylist have way to much sway over the pictures that accompany the recipes. Nothing in the recipes says anything about putting the Kale in a blender? Thanks & this comment is not intended to be "snarky," hope it does not sound that way!<br />Chris
Author Comment
Amanda H. October 28, 2016
Hi Chris -- thanks for your note. Since this came from a recipe that didn't make it into the book, not everything in the photo (which was also taken for the book) is as clear as we'd like. But we wanted to share this recipe anyway. The green sauce is what you would make simultaneously make with the salad had the salad been kept in the book. The green sauce is this recipe: https://food52.com/recipes/35763-flank-steak-with-green-sauce