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10+ Winter Squash Recipes (5 Varieties!)

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These are some of our best winter squash recipes — whether it’s butternut, acorn, delicata or pumpkin, these dishes offer fresh ideas for seasoning, cooking and serving your favorite winter squash. There are so many options! Sweet, tender winter squashes can be roasted, mashed, or made into soups or quick breads.

Winter squash varieties come in a mind-boggling array of shapes, sizes and colors. Native to North America and Mesoamerica, the botanical family Cucurbitaceae encompasses two distinct types of squash. Summer squash, which have a thin skin (making them more perishable), and sturdier, long-keeping winter squash with thick, hard skins.

These incredible veggies have amazing natural sweetness (right up there with luscious sweet potato) and we love them all!

Winter squash shopping tips

  • Look for winter squash that are rock-hard, without bruises or soft spots.
  • Choose squash that still have their stems attached — they will keep longer.
  • Pick them up and weigh them in your hands. You want to be sure they feel heavy for their size, which means they are full of moisture.

Flavor pairings for winter squash

Here’s a list to help you track delicious ingredient companions for winter squash:

  • Fresh herbs: Sage, cilantro, rosemary, thyme, Italian parsley, mint, marjoram.
  • Fat: Butter, olive oil, coconut oil, ghee, cream.
  • Condiments: Soy sauce, miso, gochujang, harissa paste, pesto sauce, green herb sauce.
  • Cheese: Feta, goat cheese, Parmesan, fontina, gruyere, cotija.
  • Aromatics: Garlic, onion (all kinds), leeks, celery.
  • Fruit: Apples, pears, cherries, cranberries, lime
  • Spices: Cumin, coriander, chili pepper, paprika, nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger.

Butternut squash recipes

A whole butternut squash on a cutting board.
  • Probably the most common type of winter squash, butternut has smooth, beige skin and bright orange flesh that turns soft and creamy when it’s cooked. It has a bulbous shape, with a long neck and rounded bottom where you’ll find the seeds.
  • To save time, look for convenient packages of fresh peeled, cubed butternut squash in the produce section.
  • Mild, nutty butternut pairs beautifully with dairy products like butter, Parmesan cheese and cream as well as bold, aromatic spices like curry and harissa.

Mashed Butternut Squash with Garlic Butter

A go-to recipe for savory mashed butternut squash (no sugar added), whipped with an Italian-style spiced garlic butter that takes this dish over the top!
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15-Minute Curried Butternut Squash Soup

A super-quick and nourishing Asian-style vegan noodle soup to make with leftover squash or canned pumpkin and creamy coconut milk.
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Harissa Butternut Squash Salad with Feta

Roasted Harissa Butternut Squash Salad with Feta

This spicy Harissa Roasted Butternut Squash Salad is an easy vegetarian main dish salad made on one sheet pan, seasoned with North African chili paste, feta cheese, pomegranate seeds or dried cranberries.
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Butternut Squash Risotto with Kale and Bacon

No-Stir Butternut Squash Risotto

Amazing no-stir butternut squash risotto with bacon and kale makes a perfect restaurant caliber dinner! This one-dish meal has smoky chunks of crisp bacon, roasted butternut squash and good-for-you kale with creamy, cheesy rice.
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Pumpkin recipes

A kabocha squash cut in half on a marble counter.
Kabocha squash has a wonderfully velvety flesh without strings.
  • The word “pumpkin” actually refers to a wide variety of thick-skinned winter squash. In North America, pumpkins are typically the familiar round, orange ones that appear in the fall months, which aren’t necessarily the best for cooking.
  • Other types of pumpkin include calabaza and Japanese kabocha, which has a rich, sweet flavor and almost fiberless flesh. To minimize prep time, look for peeled and chopped kabocha in the frozen food section of grocery stores.

Creamy Turkey Pumpkin Chili with White Beans

Creamy Turkey Pumpkin Chili is fall comfort food at its best.  A hearty creamy turkey chili that cooks in 30 minutes, with canned pumpkin puree and white cannellini beans. 
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Pumpkin Pasta in Parmesan Garlic Cream Sauce

The most delicious fall pumpkin pasta: This simple pasta recipes combines pasta shells with roasted butternut or kabocha squash and a Parmesan garlic cream sauce and thyme. If you buy precut squash, it requires just a few minutes prep before cooking. This is the ultimate comforting vegetarian pasta recipe!
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Chocolate Streusel Pumpkin Bread

Moist chocolate pumpkin bread made with a packaged mix, layered with swirls of cooca and topped with chocolate streusel.
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Acorn squash recipes

Two whole acorn squash on a surface.
  • A small winter squash with dark green skin and mild-tasting orange flesh, acorn squash is best paired with naturally sweet and salty condiments like maple syrup, balsamic vinegar and miso.
Roasted Acorn Squash with Brown Butter

Roasted Acorn Squash with Brown Butter and Parmesan

Easy and delicious roasted acorn squash, seasoned with brown butter, honey and Parmesan. This is a great vegetable side dish for fall celebrating or as part of a healthy vegetable grain bowl.
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Miso-Glazed Roasted Acorn Squash

Roasted acorn squash glazed with a tasty mix of soy sauce, miso paste and maple syrup. It’s a must-try recipe to add to your holiday spread!
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Delicata squash recipes

A whole delicata squash on a cutting board with a chef's knife next to it.
  • Delicata squash is a small heirloom variety of summer squash, shaped like an elongated football. It has thin yellow-to-ivory colored skin with green stripes (which doesn’t need to be peeled). Its yellow flesh is sweet, fine-textured and creamy.
Sliced, roasted delicata squash on a baking sheet with a spatula.

Crunchy Roasted Delicata Squash Crescents

Tender slices of delicata squash are roasted on a sheet pan, and sprinkled with seasoned panko crumbs and Parmesan cheese to make a crisp, savory topping. If you haven't tried delicata squash, this is a perfect basic recipe!
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Rigatoni pasta in a serving pan with delicata squash sauce, kale and cheese.

30-Minute Delicata Squash Pasta

Enjoy a quick and savory vegetarian pasta dish in about half an hour! This fantastic pasta combines roasted delicata squash, caramelized onion and chili in a creamy Parmesan sauce with wilted greens.
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Honeynut squash recipes

Honeynut squashes on a surface.
  • Honeynut is a type of relatively new type of winter squash, a cross between buttercup and butternut varieties. They look like mini butternut squashes.
  • The skin is more delicate than other hard squash, and is totally edible.
  • Honeynuts are super sweet and nutty-tasting!

Roasted Honeynut Squash with Parmesan Crumbs

This is a must-try recipe for roasted honeynut squash! Wedges of sweet, rich-tasting honeynut squash are baked with Parmesan breadcrumbs until tender. Serve this savory dish as a holiday side, drizzled with a zesty green herb sauce or your favorite pesto.
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10+ Winter Squash Recipes: Italian-Style Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Karen Tedesco
Creamy roasted butternut squash soup with Parmesan, red chili and a touch of warm spice is the best fall comfort food to make with winter squash! Serve with toasted sourdough bread and a hearty salad.
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Course Soup and Stew
Cuisine Italian
Servings 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 3-pound (6 kg) butternut squash
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 cup (250 ml) heavy cream
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 tablespoons (15 ml) butter or olive oil
  • 2 leeks, white and light green parts sliced in half lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • ½ cup (80 g) chopped onion
  • 1 small (100 g) apple, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 3 ½ cups (830 ml) low sodium vegetable stock or water

To serve

  • ½ cup chopped Italian parsley
  • Crushed red chili flakes, optional
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Instructions 

  • To roast the butternut squash:
  • Preheat oven to 400 (200C) degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Slice the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds with a large spoon. Drizzle the inside of the squash with olive oil and season with salt to taste. Place cut-side down on the baking sheet and put in the oven. Bake until the squash is tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, 30-35 minutes. Set aside until cool enough to handle.

Make the soup

  • Put the cream, garlic and cinnamon stick in a small sauce pan and bring just to a boil. Remove from the heat and allow the flavors to steep 15 minutes. Pour the cream through a small mesh strainer into the soup pot (or just fish out the garlic cloves and cinnamon stick with a spoon). Set aside.
  • Heat the butter or olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the leeks, onion and apple to the pot. Cook, stirring frequently, until the they're softened, 5-7 minutes.
  • Scrape the flesh from the butternut squash halves and add to the pot. Stir in the stock or water and 1 teaspoon salt. Simmer 15 minutes. Puree the soup directly in the pot using an immersion blender until very smooth (or blend in batches in a blender). Stir the infused cream into the soup and heat gently until warmed through.
  • Serve the soup in bowls, sprinkled with some parsley, chili and Parmesan cheese.

Karen’s Notes and Tips

  • The soup can be refrigerated up to 5 days and frozen up to 1 month.
  • If you use a blender to puree the soup, be careful to only fill the blender jar about halfway. Hot soup expands quickly under pressure, making a mess if it explodes out of the lid.
Equipment:
Substitutions:
  • If you’d rather skip the cream this soup will still be fantastic. Instead, leave it out and add 1 chopped garlic clove and 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon to the onion-leek mixture in step 3.
  • To use cubed squash instead of roasting a whole one, start with 4 cups peeled and cut squash. Use 4 cups of stock in step 5 and simmer 30 minutes, or until the squash is fork tender. Proceed with the blending to puree.

Nutrition

Calories: 260kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Sodium: 715mg | Potassium: 189mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 1896IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 137mg | Iron: 1mg
Did you make this recipe? Mention @Familystylefood or tag #familystylefood on Instagram

Hey, I’m Karen

Creator of Familystyle Food

I’m a food obsessed super-taster and professionally trained cook ALL about making cooking fun and doable, with easy to follow tested recipes and incredibly tasty food! Read more about me here.

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