whole food ~ well made

Roasted squash "stuffed" with greens at

Consider the Free-Form Stuffed Squash for Your Holiday Table

If you’ve been around Forage for a bit, you probably already know that I love a good shortcut. Not the “open a can of” kind.

But a shortcut based on a technique that saves a step and opens up new possibilities? I’m all about that.

This unstuffed, free-form squash is exactly one of those. It was inspired by my brilliant new friends at Tournant who have made a whole squash cooked in the coals one of their signature dishes.

For this recipe, I just use the oven. But it’s still a showstopper.

More Ways to Stuff Squash

Stuffed squash is a most excellent holiday centerpiece. It’s both main and side dish–or can even be its own course, if you’re going that fancy route. {I will say that serving in courses does seem fancy pants, but I do love a meal the progresses slowly without shoving everyone onto your plate at once. A slow meal is a lovely thing in and of itself.}

All you do is cut whatever winter squash you’re using, scrape out the seeds and pulp and fill the vessel with something savory and tasty before baking the whole shebang.

Seeding roasted squash at

But what about just roasting that whole squash without first carving out the seeds?

When it’s on the verge of collapsing, pull it out from the oven to cool for a spell. Then, split it open, spoon out the seeds and layer it with all manner of delicious, seasonal items on a serving platter.

How easy would that be?

While still warm, season it like a piece of meat with coarse salt, like kosher or flake salt, and freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle it with your best olive oil and some nicely balanced balsamic vinegar.

Then, you have a sort of “palette” for layering all kinds of tasty fall items on top of the warm squash: mustard greens or arugula to wilt, diced apple or pear or roasted sliced beet, crumbled feta or goat cheese, a sprinkle of cooked grains or sprouts, hazelnuts or walnuts.

See where I’m going?

Roasted squash "stuffed" with greens at

This is one of those moment to forage through your fridge looking for tasty bits, say a stray strip of bacon chopped up, a little Manchego to shave on top, some wilting mushrooms to quickly sauté and toss on top.

Go on and have a good look to make this “stuffed” squash your own. That’s the spirit!


and become a forager

Roasted Squash "Stuffed" with Greens, Croutons, Feta and Walnuts

Deconstruct the classic stuffed squash dish by roasting the squash in advance. Then, split it open, seed it, season it and fill it. This recipe includes some of my favorite fall flavors, but feel free to change up the "stuffing" to fit your mood and the contents of your fridge.
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 6 people
Author Lynne Curry


  • 1 large acorn squash or butternut
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • fine sea salt
  • black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups arugula, mustard or other mixed greens
  • 3/4 cup croutons
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup toasted walnuts


  • Roast the whole squash in a 400 degree F oven on a parchment-lined sheet pan until you can pierce it easily with a fork, about 45 minutes.
  • When the squash is cool enough to handle, tear it in half and scoop out the seeds with a large spoon. Split each half again into quarters and arrange on a serving platter with the skin still on.
  • Drizzle the squash with your best quality olive oil and good-quality balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle all over with salt and pepper. Keep warm until ready to serve.
  • To serve, layer on the greens and sprinkle on the croutons, feta, cranberries and walnuts.


share your thoughts

Recipe Rating

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *