With the warm weather behind us, it’s time we start embracing the abundance of produce that fall has to offer us. We’ve said our temporary goodbyes to zucchini and yellow summer squash and have replaced them with their hearty cousins: winter squash! Winter squash is so versatile. We can turn it into soups and sauces, spiralize it like these Coconut Curry Butternut Squash Noodles, bake them into casseroles, fry them, stuff them, and more. While pumpkin and butternut squash seem to be the top dogs as far as winter squashes go, there are actually a lot of them out there that are just as good. Squashes like kabocha or Japanese pumpkin, spaghetti squash, acorn, and delicata to name a few, can be found in most grocery stores and you’re likely to run into new and interesting varieties in farmer’s markets. Flavors and textures between these squashes tend not to vary much, aside from spaghetti squash, so you can swap out winter squash in recipes for whatever type of squash you want.
So, in honor of the squashes that are often kept on the sidelines, try these 15 recipes!
1. Kabocha Croquettes
Also known as Japanese pumpkin, kabocha squash tastes like a velvety butternut squash, and it is the squash you have been searching for your whole life! You might find something similar to these Kabocha Croquettes served in Japanese restaurants called “kabocha korokke,” but typically, they have eggs and little to no seasoning. Here, they have been made egg-free and seasoned with warm spices and shallow-fried instead of deep-fried.
2. Spaghetti Squash With Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto
What makes spaghetti squash so fantastic is its versatility. You can stuff it, make a casserole, or serve it like you would a pasta dish. This Spaghetti Squash with Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto will become a fan-favorite in your household. Roasted spaghetti squash noodles are tossed with a savory sun-dried tomato pesto with fresh basil and pine nuts, sweet caramelized onions, and a sprinkle of vegan goat cheese. It can be eaten as a side, or as a main dish. It also stays great in a refrigerator for a few days and makes the perfect to-go lunch.
3. Curried Chickpea and Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash
As far as fall comfort food goes, stuffed squash is among the best of the best — especially when you bring some fusion flavors to the table. This Curried Chickpea and Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash is made with bold and vibrant Indian flavors, balanced with some fresh herbs. Saving the squash shells for serving is entirely optional, but it definitely helps capture the mood of fall.
4. Red Kuri Squash Soup
Red kuri squash is a winter squash with an orange-pink color and a flavor akin to chestnuts. In this Red Kuri Squash Soup, it’s roasted and puréed into a warming soup that’s thick and creamy. Serve this amazing soup on chilly days, with some fresh avocado toast on the side for dipping.
5. Black Bean and Squash Empanadas
These 100 percent from-scratch Black Bean and Squash Empanadas may seem daunting, but the execution is easy. A wholesome buckwheat crust is stuffed with sweet roasted acorn squash and hearty black beans. These empanadas are the perfect thing to make for a fall potluck, where they are bound to be the most unique item on the table.
6. Buttercup Squash and Lentil Curry
Buttercup squash looks similar to kabocha and can be baked, mashed, puréed into a soup, or used for more unique recipes, like thisButtercup Squash and Lentil Curry. It has soft winter squash, hearty lentils, and lots of other veggies. The result is thick, spicy, slightly sweet, and slightly nutty chili. Chilly weather is the ideal time for spicy comfort foods, so dig in!
7. Spaghetti Squash and Quinoa Savory Waffles
Squash is what makes these Spaghetti Squash and Quinoa Savory Waffles sooo good. The outside is crisp while the inside is light and fluffy. These unique waffles pair perfectly with the accompanying coconut cilantro sauce. If you don’t have a waffle iron, the batter can also be flattened and cooked like veggie patties.
8. Moroccan Pilaf Stuffed Squash
This savory Moroccan Pilaf Stuffed Squash is guaranteed to win you over! Seasoned with fresh ginger, dashes of Ras al Hanout and Za’atar and topped with harissa and kefir, the flavors are heartwarming and exotic. Stuff it into some tender, brightly hued delicata squash for a lovely and seasonal dish!
9. Acorn Squash Rings With Walnuts and Dried Apricots
These Acorn Squash Rings With Walnuts and Dried Apricots are a spectacular medley of all kinds of flavors. The tender, subtly sweet flavors of roasted acorn squash pair nicely with the crumbly stuffing, made from nutty walnuts, sweet and chewy dried apricots, and warm garam masala. Hearty and delicious, this dish makes a wonderful addition to any fall dinner table.
10. Kabocha Temaki
Liven up your appetizer table with something unique, like these Kabocha Temaki. You don’t need to be a chef to make picturesque hand rolls. Stuffed with roasted kabocha, rice seasoned with homemade sushi vinegar, and crispy kale chips, these delicious fusion rolls will disappear in an instant.
11. Quinoa and Sloppy Joes
These easy and satisfying Quinoa and Squash Sloppy Joes swap out the chopped beef for quinoa combined with onions, garlic, bell peppers, spices, and roasted buttercup or acorn squash. The taste is thick, rich, and it’s sure to keep you full — perfect for a cold night’s hearty dinner! Pair it with a crisp side salad or a crunchy slaw.
12. Stuffed Sage Carnival Squash
This Stuffed Sage Carnival Squash is an easy and impressive festive squash stuffed with all kinds of delicious seasonal flavors. Roasted Carnival squash is hollowed out and then stuffed with sautéed apples, kale, pumpkin, and vegan sausage. It’s the perfect star or companion of any fall dinner.
13. Acorn Squash Ravioli in Thyme Garlic Butter
Taking a bite of this Acorn Squash Ravioli in Thyme Garlic Butter is like biting into a little piece of fall. Soft, doughy homemade ravioli are stuffed with a smoky, sweet, and slightly cheese acorn squash filling. When served, it’s covered with a simple, earthy thyme garlic butter sauce that really allows the acorn squash to shine through. Finally, it’s finished with a sprinkle of crunchy, salty pistachios.
14. Black Bean and Spaghetti Squash Casserole
Looking for something quick, easy, and filling? Look no further than this Black Bean and Spaghetti Squash Casserole. Spaghetti squash noodles are mixed with vegan feta, black beans, savory tomatoes, and spinach, then baked until warm and bubbly. Serve on its own or with bread on the side.
15. Sautéed Delicata Squash Rings
Simply sautéeing squash rings makes for a fast and easy side dish that looks beautifully impressive. These Sautéed Delicata Squash Rings look like a plate of autumn flowers and are pretty enough to be the centerpiece. They are sautéed them with just salt, pepper, garlic, and sage, but if you want a bit of spicy flavor, add some paprika or curry powder. It is highly recommended that you add a topping of breadcrumbs and vegan Parmesan mixed with a little oil. With the topping, they look like onion rings, but much prettier. These are crispy outside, soft and sweet inside and they definitely deserve a spot on your dinner table.
Don’t let butternut squash and pumpkin hog all the spotlight — try one of these recipes today!
Lead image source: Moroccan Pilaf Stuffed Squash