Stuffed acorn squash

By Wendy Andresen | Dec 12, 2019
Photo by: Wendy Andresen A sprig of thyme is a great, tasteful way to add some garnish to this recipe.

This festive, foolproof holiday dish makes a nice presentation and lends itself well to advance preparation. As cooking hygiene practices go, it’s a good idea to store the squash halves and stuffing separately to be sure they’re thoroughly chilled. To reheat, cover the stuffed squash with aluminum foil and place in a preheated 400-degree oven for 30 minutes. Add the thyme sprig garnish after heating.


Two acorn squash

1 Tbsp. canola oil

1/2 cup chopped onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup quinoa, rinsed

1 3/4 cups vegetable broth

1/2 cup chopped nuts and/or seeds

3/4 cup dried cranberries

1 1/2 tsp. fresh thyme leaves or 1/2 tsp. dried

3/4 tsp. fresh sage leaves or 1/4 tsp. dried sage

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. cardamom

Pinch of nutmeg

Salt and pepper to taste

Thyme sprigs for garnish

Nondairy butter for garnish, such as Earth Balance


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut the squashes in half from north to south and remove the seeds. Place the squash halves cut side down on an oiled sheet pan. You may cover the pan with either oiled aluminum foil or parchment paper to make cleanup easier.

2. Bake the squash halves for 30 to 40 minutes or more, depending on the size of the squash. They should be fork tender.

3. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, add the oil, onions, and garlic and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, until translucent and slightly brown. Add the broth and quinoa. Cover the pan, and when the broth reaches a boil, reduce the heat to low and cook for 15 minutes, until all the broth is absorbed.

4. Add the nuts, cranberries, thyme, sage, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, and salt and pepper to the quinoa mixture and fluff it with a fork.

5. Turn the squash halves cut side up and pack the quinoa mixture into the cavities. (Depending on the size of the squash, you may have extra stuffing.) You may keep them warm in the oven until ready to eat. Remove them from the oven and top with a dollop of nondairy butter and a few sprigs of fresh thyme.

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