Squash was never really on my radar until I joined a CSA several years ago. When summer gave way to fall and we started getting weekly boxes full of acorn and butternut squash, along with pumpkins and various greens, I was totally at a loss. These weren't foods that were served at our table growing up, so I felt really out of my element.

The pumpkins were easy -- I just turned them into pumpkin puree and used it just like I would use canned pumpkin. And I quickly figured out how to turn butternut squash into soup and learned that greens could easily be hidden in various soups and stews...

But acorn squash nearly reduced me to tears the first time I tried to prepare them. I assumed that I could just peel them and cook them similar to butternut squash, right? I quickly learned that peeling them is next to impossible, so let me save you from my rookie mistake and share just how simple and easy to prepare they actually are.

How To Bake Acorn Squash

Are you ready? Simply slice them in half, brush them with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake them cut side down (covered with foil) at 450 degrees for about 35 minutes. Seriously, that's it! You really don't even need to stuff them with anything -- they're deliciously caramelized and sweet all on their own.

But if you want to turn your baked acorn squash into a meal, stuff them with a lovely mixture of quinoa, onion, Granny Smith apple and dried cranberries. Then top it all off with a rosemary pecan vinaigrette... It's like a flavor explosion!

Door to Door Organics Ingredients

High Quality Organic Ingredients From Door to Door Organics

I worked with Door to Door Organics to create this recipe, so I thought I'd share the specific ingredients I ordered off their site to make it. (If you need a little crash course in how Door to Door Organics works, you can check out my review post from a few weeks ago.)

Organic Acorn Squash
Alter Eco Organic Rainbow Quinoa
Bowman & Landes Free Range Chicken Broth
Made In Nature Organic Dried Cranberries
Organic Granny Smith Apple
Organic Yellow Onion
Napa Valley Naturals Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Organic Shoyu Soy Sauce
Organic Lemon
Organic Garlic
Simply Organic Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

The only two items I needed that they didn't have were the rosemary and pecans. Luckily I had some of each on hand, but I would have just picked some up at the grocery store otherwise.

Baked Stuffed Acorn Squash

The quinoa mixture and rosemary pecan vinaigrette can both be prepared in the amount of time that it takes the acorn squash to bake. Fill the center of the warm, baked acorn squash with the quinoa mixture, and then drizzle the rosemary pecan vinaigrette over top. Yummmmmmm...

While the ingredient list is a little longer than what I'd normally prepare, the flavor is complex and totally worth it!

Stuffed Acorn Squash

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Stuffed Acorn Squash


    For the baked acorn squash:
  • 2 acorn squash
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • For the quinoa:
  • 3/4 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup peeled & diced Granny Smith apple
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • For the rosemary pecan vinaigrette:
  • 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • zest of one lemon
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 clove garlic, pressed
  • 1/3 cup chopped toasted pecans


    For the baked acorn squash:
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Slice the acorn squash in half from stem to root, and scoop out the seeds and stringy pulp. Brush the cut side with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. Place the squash cut side down on a baking sheet, and cover tightly with aluminum foil.
  4. Roast until tender, about 35 minutes.
  5. For the quinoa:
  6. Meanwhile, toast the quinoa in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently.
  7. When the quinoa has a nutty fragrance and is making a continuous popping sound (5-7 minutes), stir in the chicken broth, dried cranberries, diced apple and onion. Bring to a simmer, then cover and reduce the heat to low.
  8. Cook for 18-20 minutes, until the quinoa is tender and the liquid is absorbed, stirring once halfway through. Remove the pan from the heat and let it sit, covered, for about 10 minutes. Fluff quinoa with a fork.
  9. For the rosemary pecan vinaigrette:
  10. In a small bowl, combine the lemon juice and zest, soy sauce, rosemary, red pepper flakes and garlic.
  11. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until smooth. Stir in the chopped toasted pecans.
  12. Putting it all together:
  13. Spoon the quinoa mixture into the center of the baked acorn squash. Top with the rosemary pecan vinaigrette.


Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash

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Disclosure: Sponsored by Door to Door Organics, all opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this site!

by Tara | 10 comments

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