15 Amazing Acorn Squash Recipes Sure to Satisfy
Acorn squash is easy to spot in harvest displays and at farm stands because of its iconic shape, distinct ridges, and dark green skin. They're readily available in a handy size (about two servings per squash), which lends itself well to one of our favorite preparations: halved, seeded, and roasted until golden brown, with butter and brown sugar or maple syrup melting into the well inside. The result is one delicious, buttery half with gorgeous yellow-orange flesh for each person to enjoy.
The thin skin of the acorn squash makes it easier to cut and peel than many larger, hard-skinned squashes. Another plus: The skin of the acorn squash is actually edible, so you can cook it in the skin and eat the entire thing. The richness of butter, cream, cheese, or a generous coating of olive oil before roasting or baking bring acorn squash to a new level. Acorn squash is more neutral, less intensely sweet than a butternut or hubbard squash, but like many squashes, it pairs well with a wide spectrum of flavors—sweet, spicy, and savory. As with all winter squash, it's versatile and can be roasted or puréed, even pickled or marinated and served as part of a relish tray or antipasto platter. And it has one special feature not found in other winter squash—its perfect shape and size are ideal for stuffing. Used as a cup for grains and other stuffings, acorn squash is an ideal vegetarian option for a holiday table.
Look for acorn squash in early the fall through December. When you buy acorn squash, it should have dark green skin, sometimes with yellow-orange patches or striations. Choose acorn squash that has a smooth, taut skin, free of blemishes. Always buy squash with the stem attached. Not only does it make a pretty handle—it keeps the squash from spoiling. When you lift it up, if your squash feels light, chances are it will be dry when you cut it open. Store at room temperature for up to one month in a cool, dark place.
Ahead, our favorite recipes that make good use of this delicious ingredient.
Spicy Squash Salad with Ginger-Lime Dressing
Break out of your green salad rut with this lively number.
Roasted Squash with Sesame Seeds and Cumin
Put a savory spin on sweet acorn squash with cumin, coriander, and sesame seeds.
Acorn Squash with Mixed Grain Stuffing
Use this brilliant stuffed squash idea a template: Squash halves are seasoned with an aromatic spice mix and roasted, cut side down, until just tender. Then they are filled with a flavorful, whole grain stuffing before baking again. Try this version with its Middle Eastern accents and the crunch of juicy pomegranate seeds though and you might decide to keep it on repeat.
Pickle-Dressed Acorn Squash and Beets
Steaming squash is a revelation: It can be sliced easily with the skin left intact, and it is cooked in under ten minutes. You can marinate it any way you like. Dressed as it is here, in an acidic marinade, it makes a lovely addition to a holiday relish tray, along with other vegetables and cheese.
Acorn Squash Purée
Baking or steaming, then pureeing with butter, salt, and a sprinkle of nutmeg produces a versatile acorn squash purée. Use it in soups, sauces, and anywhere you would use pumpkin.
Stuffed Acorn Squash with Quinoa and Pistachios
This main-course-worthy dish is a real looker—and it's substantial, too: Quinoa is a complete protein. If you're serving vegans, swap the feta for some nutritional yeast, which has a mild nutty, cheesy flavor.
Sourdough Stuffing with Apples, Acorn Squash, and Hazelnuts
Chicory Salad with Maple-Roasted Acorn Squash
Sweet, maple-glazed acorn squash balances out the slightly bitter crunch of frisee and escarole in this elegant salad. A simple vinaigrette of hazelnut oil, lemon juice, and sherry vinegar is the finishing touch.
Acorn Squash Bisque
The smooth texture of acorn squash gives this puréed soup its character. Adding just a little bit of half-and-half and butter makes it extra-creamy.
Acorn Squash Lasagna
Ricotta cheese and pureed acorn squash make a creamy, lightly sweet filling for this unique fall lasagna. Using no-boil noodles makes the preparation quicker by a half-hour.
Roasted Acorn Squash with Cinnamon Butter
Roasted acorn squash wedges are lightly glazed with warm cinnamon butter for this easy, any night side. You can make the squash up to one day ahead and simply reheat in the oven before serving.
Acorn Squash Soup with Kale
Glazed Acorn Squash
This acorn squash side dish couldn't be easier. Simply cut the squash into slices, sprinkle with salt, pepper, and brown sugar, then roast until tender. It's a crowd-pleasing dish.
Sausages with Acorn Squash and Onions
Plump pork sausages mingle well with slices of sweet acorn squash in this 30-minute sheet-pan dinner.
Roasted Squash with Onions and Yogurt
Wedges of acorn squash are roasted with red onions and topped with Greek yogurt and mint leaves. This side goes well with roasted pork, lamb, or chicken.