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Stuffed Squash

I love when I get to use all the parts of a vegetable to create a dish! This Stuffed Squash recipe lets me do just that!

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Tis’ the season where all I want to do is stuff all the squash and eat all the pasta. Kidding aside, squash is having a moment and I for one, am her for it. I have been a fan of stuffing squash since first going vegan. It was one of my first attempts at cooking vegan, except way back then I had no idea what I was doing. For example, I didn’t know that I had to roast the squash before stuffing it. I thought I just had to cook the stuffing, place it into the cut squash and bake it for 45 minutes. This was a colossal mistake. The squash was so undercooked it was unpalatable. Good thing I wasn’t hosting a dinner party and it was just a friend who turned out to be very forgiving, gracious and generous. He even asked if he could take his leftovers home. 

close up of vegetarian stuffed acorn squash with quinoa and creamy dip on top by teri-ann carty

A great deal has changed since then. Now I have a little more know-how and a few more tricks up my sleeve starting with how to cook squash. Roasting the squash beforehand is imperative. I generally roast mine at 400 for 45-50 minutes. You will know it’s done when you prick the flesh with a fork and it’s easily pierced. After the squash is fully roasted I fill the cavity with the stuffing and then it goes back in the oven for a few more minutes to get to know one another before eating. 

I used Acorn squash for this recipe but you could use any type of squash really. Acorns are perfect for a dinner for 2 but would also be lovely for a dinner party where each person gets their very own half. A perfect Christmas dinner idea! Let’s get to it!

TERI ANN CARTY

Food Photographer and Recipe Developer based in Toronto, Canada. 

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overhead view of vegetarian stuffed acorn squash with quinoa and creamy dip on top by teri-ann carty

Stuffed Squash

Teri-Ann Carty
I love when I get to use all the parts of a vegetable to create a dish! This Stuffed Squash recipe lets me do just that!
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Servings 2 squashes

Equipment

  • oven

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • ½ block tofu (pressed and patted dry)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • pinch of chili flakes
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 portobello mushroom (halved and sliced)
  • 7-8 cherry tomato (halved)
  • handful spinach (roughly chopped)
  • ¼ cup cilantro (chopped)
  • ½ cup pomegranate seeds
  • sea salt and cracked pepper
  • ¼ cup tahini sauce

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Wash the outside of the squash and place on a cutting board. Use a sharp knife to cut the squash in half. Scoop out the seeds (you could reserve and roast but I didn’t for this recipe) and as much stringy flesh as you can and set aside. Drizzle the inside with 1 tbsp of olive oil and using your hands spread it all over the inside and outside. Sprinkle sea salt and cracked pepper. Place on a baking sheet cut side up for 45-50 minutes or until easily pierced with a fork.
  • Rinse quinoa in a fine mesh sieve until water runs clear. Place in a small pot and add 1 3/4 cup water and a pinch of sea salt. Bring to a boil and then cover for 15 minutes on low heat. Remove from heat and let quinoa rest for an additional 10 minutes with lid on before fluffing with a fork.
  • While quinoa is cooking, preheat the oven to 400 (you can cook your tofu at the same time as your squash!). Press any extra liquid out of tofu and pat dry. Cut into small cubes and toss into a bowl. Drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and cracked pepper. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes. Tofu should be crispy on one side but still soft and tender.
  • Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a pan and add chili flakes and garlic. Saute until fragrant. Add portobello mushroom and cook until mushrooms start to soften and release water. Place cooked quinoa, cooked mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, chopped spinach, most of the pomegranate seeds and chopped cilantro into a bowl and gently toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Spoon quinoa mixture into the bowl of the cooked acorn squash. and place back into the oven for 8-10 minutes. You will have PLENTY of filling leftover. Serve on the side of your squash or save for leftovers.
  • While squash and stuffing are baking, make tahini sauce. In a small bowl add a heaping tbsp tahini, 1/2 lemon juiced, 1 tbsp maple syrup. 1 clove minced garlic. Stir to combine. Add warm water to thin. Start with 2 tbsp and keep adding until you reach your desired consistency. Don’t add too much water or your sauce will be too runny. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Remove squash from the oven and drizzle with tahini sauce.
Keyword dairy free, gluten free, plant based, squash, stuffed squash, vegan

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