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Ask The Readers (What To Do With Butternut Squash)

This week’s Ask The Readers question comes from one of you.

I have a TON of butternut squash. Does anyone have a favorite butternut squash recipe to share?

My thought is can you freeze butternut squash? Maybe cook it down like you would a pumpkin and freeze either the puree or chunks? Then you could use that in soups and other things over the winter. 

I have not cooked a lot with butternut squash though, so I am hoping that you all might have some other tips and ideas. If you have a recipe or link feel free to leave it in the comments.

And does anyone know about freezing or storing it long term?

I look forward to hearing your tips and ideas.

Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. I love to use pureed butternut in place of pumpkin for pies, bars, ect. and I have frozen it and canned it. both with positive outcomes. most often I can it and use it for pies though.

  2. Squash makes great baby food if you have any friends with wee ones! It’s wonderful cooked and pureed with peaches and some cinnamon.

    I love these butternut squash wontons, but they don’t use up a whole lot of squash:

    You could also try subbing it for pumpkin in any of those numerous pumpkin recipes floating around!

  3. Why, yes, I do! In fact, I’m making it today. Here’s my version which is a blend of a couple of recipes I had:

    1/4 cup butter
    1/2 cup onions
    1 Tbls garlic
    1 butternut squash (cubed)
    28 oz canned tomatoes
    2 cups chicken broth
    1 tsp pepper
    salt to taste
    1 cup heavy whipping cream

    Saute onion and garlic in butter in large stockpot. Add chicken broth, squash, tomatoes, and pepper. Add salt to your liking. Bring to a boil and then simmer until the squash is soft. Add heavy whipping cream and simmer another 15 minutes or so. After the soup is done, puree it in the blender for a smooth texture. This goes great with a baquette and it’s mmmmmmm good!

    For your question on freezing – I’ve frozen it before after it was cubed and it worked fine for recipes after freezing. Also, you may already know this, but the easiest way to peel the skin is to poke some holes in the squash with a fork and microwave it for 2 – 3 minutes. It softens the skin so that it is easier to peel.

    • Thank you so much Shirley for letting us know an easy way to peel a squash. We’re having some for supper tonight but I wanted to cube it and roast it with some cauliflower I got on sale. I’ve only every baked it with it’s skin on. I will definitely be trying this this afternoon.

  4. Racheal Ray does a decadent mac n cheese with butternut squash:

    I make my version of this frequently, with fresh squash, usually milk instead of half-and-half, and no nutmeg. Make sure to use SHARP cheddar.

  5. My favorite is to cube the squash, cut onion and mushroom in similar size. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast in the oven at 375 until done and softened about 30-40 min.

  6. Jen @ Happy Homemaker Reviews says

    I bake til soft, add butter, salt & pepper. Mash & freeze. Works great for me!

  7. i really like Pioneer Woman’s Butternut Squash Puree. YUM!

    • I bake it either in the microwave or the oven, put it through my large ricer, then measure the likely quantity I will use at a time into a freezer ziploc and flatten to release all the air. It makes a package about 1/2 inch thick for me. Then I lay it on a flat surface in the freezer until solid. This way it tucks or stacks in very little area, and thaws super quickly. We like it just reheated, with salt, pepper and butter, or sugar cinnamon and butter.

      • I bake mine in the Oven with salt and pepper until soft, 350 for about 45-60 minutes, sometimes longer depending on the size of the squash, then I scoop it out into quart size freezer bags, flatten it and then then freeze it flat. We reheat it with butter, salt and pepper, or butter and brown sugar.

  8. We love butternut squash lasagna … it’s one of our favs!

    Our second – butternut squash mac & cheese –

  9. I’ve had it frozen and it’s always turned out well, as long as you’re expecting soft butternut squash! I had a delicious Curried Coconut Butternut Squash Soup last night, I’m sure you could alter most creamy butternut squash soup recipes to recreate something like this (if you like curried coconut that is) Good Luck!!

  10. I have also cooked and pureed it and use it in place of pumpkin in baking. After I puree it (in my blender), I let it sit in a colander lined with paper towels for a little while to let some of the excess liquid drain off (pumpkin is thicker than butternut squash). And, yes, you can freeze it like this.

  11. Because butternut squash is a winter squash and has a hard skin, you can just store it in a cool place for months. I usually buy a bushel of them and they last into the spring very nicely.

    I use them to make soups and put them in stews(one of our favorite ways) and last year found a lasagna recipe that was incredible. We have just moved but I will try to get my hands on it and post it here.

    We LOVE butternut squash!

  12. This is one of my favorites; quick and easy, can be doubled, tripled, whatever. It’s great over pasta, folded into rice, or even on its own.

    I don’t always puree it– I actually like it a little chunky, and it creates great texture. You can skip the nuts, too, but I like toasted pine nuts instead of the chestnuts. Enjoy!

    1 large butternut squash, about 1 1/2 pounds
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    2 shallots, minced
    Salt and pepper
    1 bay leaf
    Pinch ground nutmeg
    6 fresh sage leaves, cut in thin strips
    1 cup chicken broth
    1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano
    Chopped chestnuts, for garnish

    Cut the butternut squash in half lengthwise to remove the seeds and strings. Peel the skin using a paring knife and cut the squash into small cubes.

    Place the olive oil and shallots in a deep skillet over medium heat. When the shallots begin to color, add the squash and season with salt and pepper. Saute a few minutes to lightly caramelize the surface of the cubes. Add the bay leaf, nutmeg, sage, and chicken broth. Cover the pan and cook until the squash is tender but still holding its shape, about 8 minutes.

    Puree the sauce with a standard or immersion blender and serve with potato gnocchi. Top with grated cheese and chopped chestnuts before serving. If desired, fry some sage and shallots in olive oil to garnish.

  13. silverilex says

    Peel and cube, splash with a little oil, then roast it, sometimes with other root veg and our meat roast.

    Our favorite is to slice in half length ways then slather with butter, sprinkle with pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon and cover with a good layer of brown sugar. Bake until tender.

    Or boil and mash.

  14. We fry everything, or so it seems. My husband’s family taught me to prepare it this way: Peel and slice into somewhat thin rounds, lightly flour each piece then dip in egg/milk and coat with finely crushed cornflakes. Set aside till all squash is ready , then heat equal parts oil and oleo in a skillet, maybe a half inch deep or more. When moderately hot add squash pieces and fry about 3 minutes or so per side or till golden brown. Drain and lightly salt if desired (I do not like that much salt but hubby does), keep warm till all squash is fried. I love this as a main meal dish in the summer with sliced tomatoes and other fresh garden veggies. I also can squash puree in jars and use as pumpkin in pies, bread, etc.

  15. I found baked butternut squash chips on Pinterest and am going to try it tognight. I don’t have some of the spices she does (though they sound really good) so i’ll be sticking with sea salt.

    Here’s the original site:

  16. Because canned pumpkin (e.g. Libby’s) is not really pumpkins, but a variety of butternut squash, I bake the squash, puree it, freeze it in Ball freezer jam jars, and use it for pumpkin pie.

  17. Our family’s favorite butternut squash recipe is Butternut Squash Au Gratin: Uses a lot of squash and is delicious. An added plus is that it works for those vegetarian friends & family. We have made it vegan as well for a friend (who happens to be vegan) after she gave birth, and she and her family loved it.

    Here’s to a beautiful fall with a plentiful harvest of squash this year!

    ~Lots of Love from the Gamble Family

  18. I mix 2 parts apple sauce and 1 part butternut sauce with a little cinnamon and sugar [since I don’t sweeten the apple sauce] and feed it to my kids. I do the same with acorn squash. Squash is so good for them and I’m okay with hiding it.

  19. ButterNut Squash Bread is super yummy!! Unfortunately don’t remember which blog I got this from to give them credit.

    1 cup butternut squash purée (**see below)
    2 eggs
    1/2 cup vegetable oil OR 1/2 cup apple butter
    1/4 cup water
    1 cup sugar
    ½ cup dark brown sugar
    1 ¾ cups flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    ½ teaspoon kosher salt
    2 teaspoons cinnamon
    ½ teaspoon nutmeg

    Mix together the squash, eggs, oil or apple butter, water and sugar until well combined.
    Add the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg and stir until just mixed.
    Pour the batter into a greased 8×4 inch loaf pan. Bake on 350 F for 55 to 60 minutes.

    **Butternut squash puree:
    I used about a 2-pound squash to make this recipe twice over. There are several ways to cook a squash. I sliced it in half, remove the seeds, sprinkled it with just a touch of brown sugar and butter, and put it face up on a baking sheet. I baked it at 350 F for about an hour, then scooped out all the flesh and pureed it.
    In the past, I’ve also peeled the squash and cut it into chunks, then steamed it in the microwave until mashable with a fork – 6 to 10 minutes generally.
    I made this recipe this afternoon to test it out for Thanksgiving. I only made a few changes – subbed one overripe banana for the oil, used half whole wheat flour, and reduced the white sugar to 3/4 cup. It turned out really good! I steamed the squash in a pot for about 10 minutes before pureeing it.

  20. I made butternut squash gnocchi a few months ago. I found the recipe on You roast the squash, mash it, and make a dough with flour. Then you boil until it floats and brown in a little butter or oil. I can’t commit to saying this was anything more than “okay”. It just wasn’t my style. I prefer gnocchi made with potato dough, but if you really like the flavor of squash this is a great option.

  21. As mentioned previously…butternut squash soup. Only instead of cream to thicken I add a few diced potatoes. When it’s done cooking I use a blender stick to puree it. It is wonderful.

  22. I have made the Hungry Girl version of Butternut Squash Fries and they turned out very good. They reminded me of sweet potato fries.

  23. Butternut and other hard squashes keep very well without doing anything to them. I always make sure to have a large store of them in our basement to get us all the way through winter here in Ohio.

    When I bake them to eat I usually throw an extra into the oven so that I mash whatever we don’t eat and freeze the rest in 1 cup portions to use for pumpkins recipes. I prefer butternut squash over pumpkin in recipes and pies because it is thicker and richer with a deeper color.

  24. Puree it or cut in to chunks and freeze. Use for anything with pumpkin, such as pancakes, pies, or use in soup (yes, butternut squash soup is really good). Also, season with cinnamon and butter as a great side dish.

  25. I use butternut just like I would pumpkin and I actually prefer it. I tracked down a really good and sharp peeler and just peel them like a potato. I think they are best peeled, cubed and steamed or roasted with salt, pepper and olive oil. Because of their hard skins they can be stored in a cool dry place as is for months if they have been properly hardened off and the skin is unblemished. That’s why it’s one of the few veg I don’t hesitate to buy in bulk when it’s on sale.

  26. I just came across this today. It looks like it might have some good ideas for butternut squash.

  27. So many good ideas, I’m bookmarking this page!! My favorite is to roast with onions. I can eat a whole (smallish) squash that way! The October 2011 issue of Cooking Light has a yummy looking recipe for butternut squash risotto, I think I’m going to try that this week. 🙂

  28. What l do is simply is, rinse with water ,the outside of my squash, first ,then wipe with paper towel. Cut off both ends, cut squash in half, peel outside skin, off, then take out the pulp, seeds, out, cube all of the squash. Place in oven dish , put your vegetable oil and seasonings, l go with my fingers in the dish and coat all the squash and seasonings, really well, before placing in oven. Also add chopped apples, gives it abit of natural sweetness, so gooood!, brown sugar, and abit of cardamon and butter, about 4 to 8 tbsp. to taste. Oven~350 degrees~45 to 50 minutes, depending how hot your oven gets. l really like the butternut squash than to the acorn, has much more richness in colour and especially in flavour. Love this receipe so easy and so yummmy! Enjoy Lynne, hope you like! Let me know how you make out! 🙂

  29. We love butternut squash! Our favorite way to fix it is to add it for the veggie in Thai Curries. We also like to add it cubes to chili and many more ways.

  30. Squash Custard Casserole

    2 lb squash ( and kind, we use butternut)
    1 cup mayonnaise
    2 eggs
    1 small onion ( sometimes we use onion flakes)
    salt and pepper to taste
    1 cup grated cheddar, or Monterrey Jack or combination ( or what ever you have on hand)
    Parmesan cheese ( we don’t usually use this)

    Cut squash into pieces. Boil in salted water until tender. Drain. In large bowl mix: mayonnaise, eggs, onion, and ½ of cheese. Add squash and mix thoroughly. Pour into buttered casserole dish. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and some Parmesan cheese. Dot with butter. Bake 375 for 25-30 minutes.

    How we do it:
    We cut the squash in half, dig out seeds, salt and pepper, and put it in a cake pan ( will tall sides) with some water. We steam it in the oven until tender at 400, with a foil tent over it. It make the recipe easier, we mix it up in our food processor until it is nice and smooth.

    It’s a family favorite for the fall and winter months.

  31. I roast it (and acorn squash) in the oven, brush cut ends with evoo, place round side down (I take a small slice from the bottom so it doesn’t rock) in cake pan, put about 1/4 inch water in bottom, cover with foil, roast in 375 until very tender. Cool the squash so that you can work with it, scoop out the squash, puree if needed (I don’t), mash it all up and freeze in 2 cup portions in freezer baggies and substitute it for pumpkin. I’ve had many compliments on my pumpkin pie, bars, and cheesecake…..I just smile and say thank you, no one knows it’s squash!

  32. There’s a great apple-cheddar-squash soup recipe from the food network that uses butternut squash. For a while, I was making it every week! I omit the prosciutto, use skim milk, and low fat cheese. I’ve also varied up the apples that I use. It tastes great to me, though I have nothing to compare it to since I’ve never made it the prosciutto, whole milk, and regular cheese.

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