Healthy(ish) cooking on a Budget(ish)

Easy Stuffed Acorn Squash

Stuffed Acorn Squash

Thanksgiving meals are almost here!

It’s almost Thanksgiving! Pinterest and the rest of the internet is exploding with Thanksgiving recipes of all niches: healthy, not healthy, vegan, lots of meat, easy, hard, and of course leftovers. So here I am, throwing my hat into the ring with my Easy Stuffed Acorn Squash recipe.

Just like my Brussel Sprout & Sweet Potato Salad, stuffed acorn squash is tipping the scale in favor of “very healthy”. Matt was sorely disappointed when I told him I had leftover stuffing and then he pulled this out of the fridge. I’m not going to lie: this is not stuffing like your grandma made!

This is a healthy stuffing made into a meal of it’s own, perfect for your vegan Thanksgiving or as a beautiful [healthy] side dish that you won’t regret eating. Needing more meat? Add some ground turkey, it will fit in perfectly!

You don’t have to wait for Thanksgiving or Christmas to serve this meal, it’s a perfect fall or winter dish. I started craving squashes as soon as the weather turned cold! I think my body may be in tune with harvesting seasons for foods, which is great for the budget. Peak season for “winter” squash (such as the acorn squash) is early fall through the winter. This means that you can find better squash for cheaper in the local produce section or at your farmer’s market!

Pro tip: buying produce in season will save you money, help you expand your recipe repertoire, and support local farms. Also, produce always tastes better in season. 

Don’t know what is in season near you? Check out what’s on sale at your local grocer! If berries are super expensive, they probably aren’t in season (this is the only fruit I crave year round!).

Do the holidays stress you out? 

You would not be alone! Between the stress of traveling (or hosting!), budgeting, cooking, and eating somewhat healthy, there is at least one thing to stress about. Let me help out with at least one thing on that list. On Friday I’ll be sharing my tips & tricks for staying healthy throughout the holiday season and kick starting your New Years Resolutions. Starting with today’s recipe and continuing throughout the next month and a half, I will be sharing healthy(ish) holiday recipes on a budget(ish). Just hit that subscribe button at the end of this post to stay in the loop!

Stuffed acorn squash

Print Recipe
Easy Stuffed Acorn Squash
Stuffed Acorn Squash
Course Side
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 Minutes
Cook Time 30 Minutes
Servings
Servings
Ingredients
Course Side
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 Minutes
Cook Time 30 Minutes
Servings
Servings
Ingredients
Stuffed Acorn Squash
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400, line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or grease in the inside of a deep dish casserole dish.
  2. Cut the tops off the acorn squash, scoop out the filling with a spoon or fingers.
  3. Lightly oil the inside and top of squash, cook for about 15 minutes. (This step works best with spray oil if you have some!)
  4. While the squash is cooking, bring the vegetable broth to a boil and add the 3 cups of barley. Boil for 10-15 minutes. (If using another grain, cook as instructed but replace water with the broth)
  5. While waiting for those things to finish, saute the onion in the remaining oil on medium high heat. Once soft, add the diced apple. Saute for a few more minutes, then add seasonings and dried cranberries.
  6. Don't forget the squash! Go ahead and take it out of the oven.
  7. The barley should be done about now, drain 90% of the broth and add the rest to the onion & apple dish. Simmer, covered, for about 5 minutes.
  8. Scoop the stuffing mixture into the squash and bake for about 30 minutes!
Recipe Notes

Pro tip: The entire squash is edible, but many people don't enjoy the toughness of the skin. To eat, I cut the bowl in half and scoop the now [hopefully] tender squash meat out to eat with the stuffing.

Easy Stuffed Acorn Squash is vegan, vegetarian, and dairy free! 

Nutrition facts per acorn: 483 calories, 91.g of fat, 1.4g of saturated fat, 0mg of cholesterol, 587mg of sodium, 1896mg of potassium,41.4g of carb, 14g of fiber, 21g of sugar, 11.4g of protein. 156mg of Calcium, 5mg of Iron.



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