Butternut squash is not my favorite thing. It is a bit too bland yet a bit too sweet at the same time. Buttery? Yes. Nutty? Not quite. Delicious? The jury is still out.
I really want to like it, so I reasoned I would force myself to cook with it. I knew I would eventually find something besides butternut squash risotto to love.
And here it is: quinoa-stuffed butternut squash.
It must be the quinoa that soaks up all that butternut squash sweetness. The flavor is present but not overpowering and works well with the red pepper and sage stuffed in the squash too. The cheese melted over the top also helps. Let’s be honest. Melted cheese always helps.
Speaking of cheese, I think these ingredients would also make for a great pizza. Butternut squash, red pepper rings, and maybe some caramelized onions over an Alfredo-type sauce I use in a butternut squash lasagna. Does anyone want to make this for me? No? Okay. Until I make it for you, enjoy!
Quinoa-Stuffed Butternut Squash
Yield 2 servings
1 butternut squash
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
1/4 cup white or yellow onions, diced
1 cup vegetable broth
1/2 cup (uncooked) quinoa
1 tablespoon fresh sage, chopped
Gruyere or other cheese of your choice for sprinkling
- Cut the butternut squash in half lengthwise and remove the seeds and membranes.
- Place the squash cut-side down on a lightly greased baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.
- While the squash bakes, heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Saute the red pepper and onions until softened, about five minutes.
- Add the vegetable broth, quinoa, and sage and bring to a boil.
- Cover, reduce the heat, and allow the quinoa to simmer for 15 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and allow to sit, covered, for an additional five minutes.
- When the baked squash is cool enough to handle, scoop out most of the pulp and place in a bowl. Leave about 1/4 inch of squash along the shell to keep it intact enough to hold the filling.
- Mash the removed pulp with a fork, then stir in the cooked quinoa mixture.
- Stuff all of this goodness back into the two butternut squash shells and sprinkle with as much cheese as you would like.
- Return the stuffed and cheese covered butternut squash shells to the oven and broil for just a few minutes until the cheese is melted and slightly browned.