Summer Squash Salad with Avocado & Pine Nuts

a simple summer squash salad with avocado, toasted pine nuts, ricotta salata cheese, and fresh chives

servings: 4-6

  • Author: Kayla Howey


  • ¼ cup pine nuts
  • 1 ¼ lbs baby summer squash (zucchini, yellow sqash, etc.)
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large lemon, juiced
  • 2 small avocados
  • 1 small block ricotta salata cheese
  • fresh chives
  • flaky sea salt
  • freshly cracked black pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil, to drizzle


  1. In a small sauté pan, add the pine nuts over low heat. Toast until golden and fragrant, stirring often (watch closely so they don’t burn). Transfer the pine nuts to a plate and let cool.
  2. Slice the ends off the baby squash. Using a mandolin, slice the squash into very thin rounds (adjust the settings until you get a piece of squash that is almost paper thin, but still holds it shape and has a nice bite). You want about 1 pound of sliced squash total.
  3. Combine the squash, olive oil, and lemon juice in a large bowl. Toss well and let sit for 10 minutes to marinate. Cut the avocados into chunks, add them to the bowl, and gently toss to combine.
  4. Spoon half of the salad out onto a large plate or platter. Season well with flaky sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Spoon out the rest of the salad.
  5. Crumble the ricotta salata into small chunks and sprinkle over top. Cut the chives into ½” pieces (if thin) or chop the chives (if thick). Sprinkle the chives over top, along with the pine nuts.
  6. Drizzle more olive oil. Season again with flaky sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper.