Wonderfully wintry squash is sweet, nutty and ultra versatile. It can be blitzed into a warming soup, added to a comforting curry or roasted to perfection and served as a hearty veggie main. We love this gorgeous gourd in all its forms. Once you’ve mastered the perfect roasting technique, try our best ever butternut squash recipes for mouth-watering meal ideas.
How to prepare butternut squash
There are a myriad of ways to cook butternut squash. You can either roast butternut squash in its skin, halved, or cut into wedges. It can be served stuffed as a stunning main, as a simple side dish, stirred into risottos, pasta or salads, or blitzed into a soup.
By peeling and dicing, the cubes of squash will become more caramelised, with plenty of texture.
Roasting diced squash: for risottos, salads and pasta
Top and tail the squash, and use a Y peeler to remove the tough skin from the squash. You may find it easier to use a knife if your peeler isn’t very sharp – cut the bulb from the thinner stem of the squash, and use a knife to slice the skin from both pieces, working your way around the veg. (Cutting it in half before peeling is easier, if you’re using a knife.) Cut the peeled squash in half and remove the seeds with a dessert spoon. Cut into equally sized pieces.
Check out our video tutorial on how to cut butternut squash for even more tips and essential info.
Roasting halves or wedges of squash: for serving stuffed, or as a side dish
Top and tail the squash, halve and scoop out the seeds and any stringy membrane with a spoon. Either score the flesh of the squash if roasting halves, or cut into wedges.
For more information, read our guide on how to prepare squash.
How to roast butternut squash
- Tip your squash pieces or wedges into a bowl or on a baking tray, and add a little olive or vegetable oil, and toss together with some salt and pepper, so every piece is coated.
- You can add extra herbs and flavourings here if you fancy, like garlic, tamarind, cumin, pomegranate molasses, or chopped sage, depending on what you’re making.
- Tip onto a baking tray (if using a bowl) with the pieces evenly spaced apart, so they roast rather than steam.
- If you’re roasting squash halves, rub with olive oil and season, put cut-side up on a baking tray.
- As a general rule, for small cubes of squash, roast for 25-30 mins at 200C/180C fan/gas 6 until golden and tender when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife.
- Roast wedges for 35-45 mins until tender and half squashes for 1hr 15-30 mins.
If you’ve roasted the squash skin on, either use a spoon to scoop out the softened flesh, or gently peel away the skin once the wedges have cooled a little.
Top 5 roasted butternut squash recipes
1. Roasted squash with pesto & mozzarella
Try our roasted squash with pesto & mozzarella tossed into a fresh, summery salad. Add red onion and chunky red pepper for a veritable veggie feast for the senses. The sweet squash and creamy cheese are the perfect accompaniment to peppery rocket.
2. Roasted squash risotto with wensleydale
Roasted squash, stirred through a rich risotto makes for a super-satisfying family dinner. Our roasted squash risotto with Wensleydale is ideal for a dinner party main. It’s equal parts comforting and impressive, but it’s deceptively simple to make.
3. Roasted butternut squash soup
Our roasted butternut squash soup is deliciously decadent, topped with crispy pancetta and toasted pine nuts for extra texture. Roasting the squash before blitzing adds depth of flavour and a distinct nuttiness. This bowlful is the perfect winter warmer.
4. Stuffed butternut squash
This colourful stuffed butternut squash, packed with buts, barley and herbs is full of texture and flavour. This crowd-pleasing main is ideal for entertaining, and it takes just fifteen minutes to prepare. Carve your squash into slices and serve with a drizzle of tahini sauce.
5. Maple-roasted squash with pecans
Serve our maple-roasted squash with pecans as a simple side dish to an extravagant Sunday dinner. The earthy rosemary balances out the sweet maple syrup and crunchy roasted pecans. The squash will become tender and start to caramelise at the edges during cooking.
More ideas for cooking with squash
3 quick dinner ideas with butternut squash
Our top squash and pumpkin recipes
Healthy pumpkin and squash recipes
What’s your favourite way to serve roasted squash? Leave a comment below…