Easiest Mashed Butternut Squash

  • 1 medium butternut squash (~2 lbs)
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1-2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper
  • Splash of milk
  • Cinnamon and nutmeg (optional)

Cut squash in half and scoop out seeds and slimy pulp.  Discard because, gross.  Place squash cut side down in a microwave safe dish (I use a 9×9 square Pyrex) and add a quarter inch of water.  Microwave on high for 10 minutes or until the insides are tender.

Scoop out the flesh into a bowl and add the butter, brown sugar and salt and pepper.  Start out with a very teensy tiny amount of milk and mash everything together.  Add more milk as needed and then taste.  I usually add a dash of cinnamon and nutmeg, but it is completely up to you.

Stuffed Acorn Squash

My love affair with acorn squash began when I discovered this recipe for a cranberry and apple stuffed version.  I was looking for something new for a side dish and this fit the bill perfectly.  And then AndreAnna, once again, provided me with delicious dinner inspiration in the form of a ground beef stuffed version.  Check out her original recipe and then come back here for my take on it.  I made it once according to her recipe, but there were a few things I wanted to change to better suit my tastes.  Below find an updated ingredient list, I’ve bolded my changes:

  • 2 medium sized acorn squash
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 or 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary (I was out of fresh)
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • grill seasoning (Brian added maybe a 1/2 teaspoon after everything was done and it really improved the flavor)
  • 1 apple, diced (I left the peel on)
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans (I’m a pecan-aholic and I prefer their flavor to that of walnuts)
  • 2 tablespoons grated sharp cheddar cheese (so confession, I used a cinnamon flavored cheese from Trader Joe’s but I think this would be amazing with some sharp cheddar)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and a dash of nutmeg (I don’t have allspice!)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Okay, got it?  Now go back here for your step-by-step recipe.  Thanks again AndreAnna for inspiring my culinary creativity!


Finding alternatives to pasta, one of the staples of my old diet, has been really hard.  Guess what, though?  There is this magical vegetable (gourd?) known as spaghetti squash.  It is so simple to cook too, even easier than real spaghetti in my opinion.  That is, if you can manage to get it chopped in half!  Once you’ve accomplished that feat – possibly with an axe – and removed the seeds/pulp, place it in a microwave safe dish with a quarter inch of water (just like the butternut squash) and microwave for 8 minutes.  Take a fork and start scraping out the innards.  It will look just like spaghetti.  YUM!

Recipe inspiration: Spaghetti Squash with Maple Syrup and Shallots and Pesto Chicken over Spaghetti Squash.

So, what do you like to do with squash?  Any links you’d want to share with me?


About Kirsten

Wife, mother, writer and all around knerd. Maker of cookies, scarves and really big messes.

Posted on November 5, 2010, in Recipes and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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