Unexpectedly Delicious: Acorn Squash


Did you know that squash is technically a botanical fruit? In a culinary sense, however, it is treated as a sweet vegetable. The acorn squash gets its name from its ovoid shape – similar to a tree acorn – with deep ridges forming a defined point at the bottom. Its flesh is sweeter than summer squash (i.e. zucchini) and has a pleasant nutty taste characteristic of autumn flavours. The prime session for deliciously fresh acorn squash is early fall through winter.
Acorn squash is most commonly dark green with a spot of orange on one side. Newer varieties are starting to surface, like the golden and white acorn squash. Traditional deep green acorn squash is native to the Americas, and was one of the Indian Triad staple foods of squash, beans and corn.

Why should you eat them?                                                                                             

Winter acorn squash is an excellent source of immune stimulating nutrients like vitamin A and C. These vitamins help strengthen the body’s ability to fight off germs and viruses as well as reduce cellular damage that in turn reduces risk for chronic disease like cancers and heart disease. Acorn squash is especially high in vitamin A, which is essential in maintaining good eye and skin health.

Due to its impressive fibre content, acorn squash can help to reduce symptoms of constipation, bloating and cramping. The fibre will also help to keep you feeling satisfied by slowing down your digestion and evening out your blood sugar levels.  Keep in mind that along with fibre, this root vegetable is a denser source of carbohydrate. In your meal, the acorn squash will replace the grain portion to form a balanced dish, alongside a protein and some less starchy veggies.

 Nutrition value of 1 cup of baked Acorn Squash

  • 9g of dietary fibre!
  • Over 30% of your daily vitamin A requirements
  • An excellent source of vitamins B1, B5 and B6 important for energy metabolism
  • An excellent source of Magnesium and Manganese important for strong bones and blood sugar regulation

The wonders of how to enjoy them

You can store acorn squash for up to 1 month in a dark cool environment (like a garage or pantry). You only need to refrigerate this vegetable when it has been cut open or cooked. If you are able to get garden fresh acorn squash it can last you for up to 3 months! If you batch cook some acorn squash for the week, it will last you in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days. Make sure that you cook your squash before freezing it as freezing raw squash will damage its flesh and texture.

Before cooking your squash you must remove the inner fibrous strands and seeds with a spoon. To make cutting the squash in half an easier task, ensure that you have a large sharp knife handy! Also, microwaving the squash on high for about 2 minutes will help soften the flesh and make it easier to slice through.

Acorn squash can be cut up and roasted in the oven, boiled, mashed, baked in halves or pureed into a soup! Try out a few different cooking methods before you find your favourite.

If you find yourself with too many acorn squash to consume, no problem! Set them out as a beautiful addition to your fall home décor.

 Recipe Ideas

  • Baked Acorn Squash Rings
  • Roasted Acorn Squash and Brussels Sprouts (recipe available through this month’s newsletter)
  • Acorn Squash Bowls
  • Roasted Acorn Squash and Apple Soup
  • Acorn Squash Bread or Muffins
  • Acorn Squash and Sage Ravioli
  • Chicken Sausage and Vegetable Stuffed Acorn Squash
  • Butter and Brown Sugar Glazed Acorn Squash

 Did you know that…

The thin green skin of the acorn squash is actually edible! There is no need to meticulously peel the squash before roasting it off in the oven. This way you save prep time and keep a pleasant texture and colour in your dish, all with the added benefit of even more fibre per serving!


What’s your favourite way to enjoy acorn squash? Let us know in the comment section below. 🙂