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Butternut Squash Ideas

Lately I have been on a bit of a butternut squash kick and have been trying new things. My favorites are simply baked crisp with layers of blue cheese, roasted with maple syrup, in risotto with parmesan, and in a hearty chili.

Any other ideas that are favorites of any hounds on how to use butternut squash as a star ingredient? Thanks.

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  1. I make a ridiculously simple and healthy sauce for pasta - usually cheese ravioli or tortellini.

    I cube the squash, put it in a saucepan with a small amount of chicken stock and simmer until soft. I then puree it all in a food processor. While it's pureeing, I brown some butter, and add it to the mix. Season with nutmeg, salt and pepper and voila, a simple, healthy and delicious sauce for pasta.

    6 Replies
    1. re: maisonbistro

      Thanks for the idea. I love butternut squash and have never tried it as a pasta sauce. We have a few family members who do not eat buttenrut when served as a side vegetable, but they may like it this way. I will certtainly give it a try!

      1. re: macca

        I love it as a sauce too. Add with some fresh thyme and a little parsley is amazing. Also, I like to add some roasted onions or mushrooms, sauteed is fine too. Makes a nice hearty simple pasta dish.

        Another note, add some fresh spinach to this sauteed spinach with shallots and a pinch of red pepper and serve over pasta. Then make a simple sauteed onion and mushroom mix and serve that on top of the squash and spinach. Top with ricotta silatta and presto. An amazing dinner. I like a good spagheti for this. Whole wheat preferred. Easy, in expensive and quick. It is amazing.

        1. re: kchurchill5

          Wow- more great ideas, I am bookmarking this thread, and will have some fun this weekend. I have a HUGE butternut at home ( don't know what I was thinking when I bought it), and it is nice to know I can use it up with a few new recipes

          1. re: macca

            I love to roast my squash first. It is easy, just on some parchment or aluminum foil with olive oil salt and pepper. 30 minutes later soft, then mash add with some herbs, maybe some great and you have a great base. Then add whatever like the spinach or any other ingredients. Endless possibilities!!

            Enjoy this weekend, I still have 4 in my fridge from the market. I plan on a soup and then a stew with pork.

            Oh yeah ... one more. Mashed with garlic and grilled onions, Spread on a toasted baquette topped with chopped sauteed bacon and then topped with gruyere and broiled till the cheese melts. Pretty tasty and easy. Make the squash a couple of days ahead and same with the bacon. Just grill the bread, top and broil till the cheese melts. A perfect appetizer or a side to a main course with a nice hearty stew

      2. re: maisonbistro

        you mentioned Pasta ....have you used Spaghetti with butternut squash or any squash family and if so could you give me a recipe.

      3. Ravioli with ricotta and parm served with a sage butter.

        Lasagna with ricotta, cottage cheese, and a parm and mozz bechemel, fresh thyme and sage I make individual rolls which are fun and easy.

        Squash, crimini mushrooms and brussel sprouts, cooked on the stove with some fennel and broth. Then when the broth reduced add some cream, just enough to make a light sauce, butter and herbs.

        Roasted casserole with onions and red beets layered between gruyere cheese and bread crumbs.

        Roasted and chilled and added it to beets and spring greens for a great salad.

        A puree of cauliflower and butternut with herbs and butter for an alternative to mashed potatoes.

        Shredded and pan sauteed with onions, pancetta, a little olive oil and then served with a dizzle of blue cheese sauce

        A casserole with butternut, crimini and onions (chippolini), roasted first, then layered in a casserole dish. Make a simple bechemel drizzle over the vegetables, a layer of fresh bread crumbs and fresh crumbled gorgonzola cheese. Bake until bubbly.

        Butternut, maple syrup, chives and roasted, Served with pan seared pork tenderloin

        Butternut, apples, pears, walnuts, goat cheese stuffed in a pork tenderloin. Topped with a apple and port glaze.

        1. cubed and roasted with tamari and sesame seeds

          1. Butternut squash soup! It's everywhere in restaurants.

            You can also make Butternut squash tart / pie. Similar to making pumpkin tart or pie, just substitute with BNS.

            1 Reply
            1. re: kobetobiko

              I also make a butternut soufle I guess. It has gruyere cheese and eggs and if beat until puffy and baked. Reall good and light.

              Butternut, parsnips and potatoes make a great creamed soup a bit different. I like adding sherry to mine.

            2. I want to try the butternut squash w/ sage in pasta recipe that is in last months Cook's Illustrated.

              Serves 4 to 6. Published January 1, 2009. From Cook's Illustrated.

              Don’t be tempted to use dried sage in this recipe.

              4 slices bacon , halved lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1/4-inch pieces
              8 large fresh sage leaves , plus 1 tablespoon minced (see note)
              1 medium medium butternut squash (about 2 pounds), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
              1 tablespoon unsalted butter
              6 scallions , sliced thin (about 1 cup)
              1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
              1 teaspoon sugar
              Table salt and ground black pepper
              2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
              1 pound penne pasta or other short, tubular pasta
              2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese , plus extra for serving
              4 teaspoons juice from 1 lemon
              1/3 cup sliced almonds , toasted

              1. Cook bacon in 12-inch skillet over medium heat until crisp, about 8 minutes. Add whole sage leaves and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Strain mixture through fine-mesh strainer into small bowl, reserving bacon fat and bacon-sage mixture separately.

              2. Return skillet to high heat, add 2 tablespoons reserved bacon fat (adding olive oil if necessary) and heat until shimmering. Add squash in even layer and cook, without stirring, until beginning to caramelize, 4 to 5 minutes. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally until spotty brown, 3 to 4 minutes longer. Add butter and allow to melt, about 30 seconds. Add scallions, nutmeg, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 3/4 teaspoon pepper, and minced sage; cook, stirring occasionally, until scallions are softened, about 3 minutes. Add broth and bring to simmer; continue to cook until squash is tender, 1 to 3 minutes longer.

              3. Meanwhile, bring 4 quarts water to boil in large Dutch oven over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon salt and pasta. Cook until just al dente, then drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup cooking water, and transfer back to Dutch oven.

              4. Add squash mixture to pasta; stir in 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, lemon juice, and reserved bacon-sage mixture, adjusting consistency with reserved pasta liquid. Serve, passing almonds and Parmesan separately

              2 Replies
              1. re: Kelli2006

                I've done something like this, but sauteed shallots with the bacon instead of scallions and tossed with gnocchi.

                1. re: Kelli2006

                  Hi Kelli
                  I actually made up a simpler version of this last weekend as I needed to use up some leftover butternut squash. I peeled and cubed the squash, then tossed with some dried sage/olive oil, salt and pepper and roasted in a 400 over for about 45 mins. At about 30 mins in, I put on some pasta water to boil, then cooked a slice of niman ranch bacon (pancetta would work well but this is what I had on hand), removed from the pan, reduced heat to med/low. I set it aside and chopped up some chicken tenders to saute in a bit of the bacon fat. Cooked some pasta (anything that holds sauce), reserved 1/2c cooking water, then combined pasta, chicken, squash, some toasted walnuts and crumbled bacon with some blue cheese and the pasta water to make a sauce. was fantastic!

                2. If you make a maple-flavored or other sweet roasted dish and have some leftover, puree it and make pancakes, muffins or anything else you'd use canned pumpkin for.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: mordacity

                    I added that to a thin crepe batter, close to it and make similar to crepes. Filled with ricotta nuts, gruyere and herbs. Topped with a warmed cranberry and apple and pear fruit compote. Excellent

                  2. I cube it and use it instead of meat in Thai green curry, along with a red bell pepper, and whatever other vegetables I have.

                    1. my husband just cooked up the most amazing butternut squash risotto...it was AMAZING.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: lollya

                        This is our favorite way to use it as well. Saute onions and squash cubes to start. For broth I use a box of the butternut squash soup from Trader Joes and a box of chicken broth. Parsley to finish. Yum.

                      2. Every other week I've been getting a butternut squash at the farmers' market and making roasted butternut squash soup (Michael Chiarello recipe). Yum!!

                        1. We do Dan Silverman's Greens with Roasted Butternut Squash and Ricotta Salata from CBS News' Chef On A Shoestring


                          1. I just made this delicious warm butternut squash and chickpea salad from Smitten Kitchen:


                              1. Butternut quesadillas I forgot about these.

                                Cook the butternut anyway you like. I like to roast mine and then mash, but sauteing or even the micro will work. Add black beans and some red onion, or white if you prefer. I like to add garlic and chipoltes for spice, but use your favorite peppers. Mix it all together and then put on one half of the torilla. top with pepper jack or montery jack cheese and then fold over the tortilla. Lightly grill on both sides. I like to serve with sour cream and chopped scallions. You could use salsa too if you wanted.

                                Even some slice chicken would be fine in this.
                                I my have to post this recipe, it really is good and easy. I made this a couple of years ago after a friend bought too many from the farmers market and found out she didn't like them.
                                I put the flour tortilla down in the pan lightly oiled tortilla, add the squash

                                1. Cut them lengthways into 8 (or more if it's a really big one). Make up a mix of oilve oil, crushed cumin, coriander, pepper and some dried chili flakes. Rub over the squash and bake till soft. Good with chicken, IMO.

                                  1. We had the most amazing crop of butternuts in our garden this year...lots of great ideas here, thanks! My current favorite prep is sorta from Peacock/Lewis "Gift of Southern Cooking"

                                    Cube butternut and toss in olive oil, and roast for about 15 minutes. Add some minced garlic, rosemary, salt, hazelnuts and a drizzle of hazelnut oil, and continue roasting for another 10 minutes or so.

                                    I'm going to try the recipe Kelli posted, and the butternut and cauliflower (I'm trying to like cauliflower, since it's so cheap now)

                                    1. you can cube it, roast it, and fill burritos with squash, cooked shredded chicken, rice, sage, onions (cooked), green chiles, etc.

                                      i use it to make a pie filling - a Maple Roasted Chestnut Butternut Pie

                                      also good as a topping for firm white fish - cook the squash and puree; caramelize some onions, then puree with squash, adding in a little evaporated milk (skim if preferred), julienned sundried tomatoes and/or roasted red peppers. once pulsed together, return to pan and heat through, stirring in fresh sage. serve over (salted and peppered) white fish broiled.

                                      add the puree to oatmeal with a little vanilla and pumpkin pie spice.

                                      combine puree with ricotta cheese and fill crepes/blintzes.

                                      slice it very thin, then season and bake at high heat to make butternut squash chips.

                                      1. I make a great salad - cube and roast with a little evoo, s&p. i also roast fresh beets, i rub them with evoo and wrap them individually with foil. cool, peel and cube beets the same size as your butternut. i make a balsamic dressing or a white wine vinegar vinaigrette and marinate sliced red onion in the dressing for an hour or so until onion is wilte. then i toss arugula and baby spinache with some of the dressing and place the roasted butternut and beets on top, drizzle with dressing, add marinated red onion rings, crumble goat cheese all over, and toasted pumpkin seeds and it is yum

                                        1. I love butternut squash and use it in lots of recipes. One of my favourites is lasagna with butternut squash, ricotta, spinach, roasted garlic, onions, sage and a bit of cream in the mix. The butternut squash is roasted, then mashed and mixed with the remaining ingredients to make a great lasagna to which you can add some bechamel and parmesan on top or tomato sauce.
                                          It's also good in risottos, as mentioned before but I make a barley/butternut squash one that is delicious.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: Paula76

                                            If not already mentioned, I enjoy making butternut squash ravioli. Roast a cut, seeded squash until caramelized. Scoop out and place in a colander to drain for a number of hours. Mix with some dried fine bread crumbs, crushed amaretti cookies (reserve some for sprinkling on top), some Parmigiano-Reggiano and/or Pecorino, and an egg, S & P for the filling. Make ravioli or tortellini. Serve with butter (and/or olive oil) and sage. Serve with extra cheese and/or more crushed amaretti cookies.

                                            1. re: markabauman

                                              Forgot to mention adding a little freshly grated nutmeg to the filling.

                                          2. Heidi of 101cookbooks.com fame uses pan toasted butternut squash "croutons" in salads:
                                            http://www.101cookbooks.com/ingredien... squash

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. A recipe from Matthew Fort (which I havnt tried but as he's one of life's great eaters, I just know it's going to work):

                                              Cut up the squash and roast it until reasonable soft (he suggests about 25 minutes at 180). Take the flesh off the skin and put into a bowl with a little butter and seasoning. Add 150g grated Gruyere and mix. Put in a baking dish; top with some breadcrumbs and 100g Gruyere. Put it back in the oven until the cheese has melted and the top gone crunchy.

                                              1. this recipe for roasted butternut squash with red grapes, sage, and pine nuts is supergood:

                                                1. I made a sort of impromptu butternut squash gratin about a week ago that turned out really well: roasted butternut squash with a topping of breadcrumbs, parmesan, sage, and olive oil. I'm not sure I'll be able to duplicate it -- I didn't measure anything or keep track of cooking times or temperatures....

                                                  1. I have enjoyed, but never made, these sublime biscuits served at the restaurant at the Shaker Village in NH:
                                                    SHAKER RAISED SQUASH BISCUITS
                                                    1 c milk
                                                    ½ stick unsalted butter + more to melt for brushing
                                                    ¾ c sugar
                                                    ½ tsp salt
                                                    1 envelope yeast
                                                    4 to 5 c unbleached AP flour
                                                    1½ c strained butternut squash or pumpkin puree OR a 16oz can pureed pumpkin or
                                                    2 large eggs, room temp

                                                    Heat milk and butter on medium until butter melts. Remove from heat.
                                                    In large bowl, mix sugar and salt, pour in the hot milk/butter, stir, and allow to cool uncovered to lukewarm. Add yeast and 2c flour. Beat at med speed of electric mixer 2 minutes, or stir to blend well. Add eggs and squash, mixing well. Continue to add flour until you have a stiff dough that starts to leave the sides of the bowl.

                                                    Turn dough onto lightly floured surface, knead 7-8 min, adding flour as needed to prevent sticking. Put dough in lightly-oiled bowl and turn so all sides are coated, and cover with towel. Let dough rise in warm place until doubled, about 90 minutes. Punch down, roll out on lightly-floured surface to ½" thick. Cut as many as possible with a floured 2½" biscuit cutter.

                                                    Place the biscuits in a lightly-greased 8x8" pan with sides touching if you want soft-sided biscuits, or on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet a few inches apart for browned sides. Cover with towel and let rise until doubled again, about an hour. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425°F. Bake 25 min, till golden brown. While still hot, brush tops with melted butter. Serve hot or cool on wire rack.

                                                    1. Jamie Oliver has a really good, easy squash cupcake recipe on his website:


                                                      I use a little less sugar, more spices, and no frosting and serve them at breakfast. It never would have ocured to me to use raw butternut or pumpkin in baking, but it makes so much sense - raw carrots go into carrot cake and they are just as hard as hard squashes.