28 Squash Recipes to Cook This Winter

Dairy-Free Vegan Butternut Squash Soup

The Spruce

Winter squashes have earned their name for a couple of reasons: they're harvested in the cold-weather months and they're the perfect seasonal ingredient. Whether pumpkin, acorn, or spaghetti squash and no matter how you cook them—roast, mash, puree, sauté—winter squash are creamy, naturally sweet, and totally comforting. They also last for weeks on your counter and make for nice decor in the meantime. Truly versatile gourds, their flavor makes them at home in savory and sweet dishes alike, such as in the recipes below.

  • 01 of 28

    Baked Maple and Brown Sugar Butternut Squash

    Baked Maple and Brown Sugar Butternut Squash

    The Spruce

    Butternut squash is roasted to sweet perfection with maple and brown sugar in this flavorful recipe. Serve with a savory main protein like pork or beef or mix with roasted Brussels sprouts to form a heartier side dish.

  • 02 of 28

    Soft Pumpkin Cloverleaf Rolls

    Savory pumpkin cloverleaf rolls recipe

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

    Homemade bread is made even better with pumpkin and a pretty cloverleaf shape. This dough comes together easily and the finished rolls are especially good warm from the oven. If possible, time the rise so that you can bake the rolls about 30 minutes before eating.

  • 03 of 28

    Sweet and Spicy Butternut Squash Pizza

    Sweet and Spicy Butternut Squash Pizza

    The Spruce / Leah Maroney 

    Change up your pizza toppings by swapping your usual pepperoni and sausage for sweet butternut squash. Cheddar and blue cheese add even more flavor. Use store-bought pizza dough for an easy meal or make your own.

  • 04 of 28

    ​Vegetarian Pumpkin Lasagna

    Vegetarian pumpkin lasagna recipe

    The Spruce / Ulyana Verbytska

    A pumpkin puree sauce replaces the typical marinara meat sauce in this cheesy lasagna. Mushrooms, sage, and a combo of four cheeses add flavor to the hearty vegetarian-friendly main.

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  • 05 of 28

    ​Dairy-Free Vegan Butternut Squash Soup

    ​Dairy-Free Vegan Butternut Squash Soup

    The Spruce

    For a no-fuss, filling soup that's secretly vegan, use tender winter squash. Blended until creamy, this colorful bowl only uses a few ingredients. Top with a dollop of pesto if you want to get fancy.

  • 06 of 28

    Kabocha Tempura

    Kabocha Tempura

    The Spruce / Judy Ung 

    Kabocha is a green pumpkin-like winter squash that's frequently used in Japanese cooking. Its light sweetness and tender, but the sturdy texture makes the vegetable great for dipping in tempura batter and frying until crispy.

  • 07 of 28

    ​Spaghetti Squash With Tomatoes and Parmesan

    Spaghetti Squash with Tomato Sauce

    bhofack2 / Getty Images

    Spaghetti squash may look like an ordinary squash, but once baked or steamed the flesh turns into strands that resemble its namesake noodle. It makes a great, low-carb substitute for pasta when you're looking for a lightened-up entree.

  • 08 of 28

    Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Butternut Squash, and Cranberries

    Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Butternut Squash, and Cranberries

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray 

    A roasted vegetable salad with sweet-tart dried cranberries and nutty pecans is an ideal wintertime side or lunchtime main. Serve warm or at room temperature and dot with creamy goat cheese if desired.

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  • 09 of 28

    Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai

    Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai

    The Spruce Eats / Jennifer Perillo

    Spaghetti squash pad Thai is a low-carb delight. This twist on the famous takeout dish replaces the rice noodles with spaghetti squash and broils tofu for a crispy protein. Add eggs, fish sauce, cilantro, tamarind, scallion, garlic, bean sprouts, and roasted peanuts for lots of flavor, and a meatless dinner is ready to enjoy.

  • 10 of 28

    Stuffed Spaghetti Squash

    Stuffed Spaghetti Squash

    The Spruce Eats / Pete Scherer 

    Whether as a main dish or a side for a larger meal, stuffed spaghetti squash is sure to please everyone at the table. The roasted squash is filled with cherry tomatoes, garlic, onion, Swiss chard, and Parmesan cheese, then seasoned with oregano and rosemary. It's also a great recipe for vegetarian and vegan diets with a couple of quick changes.

  • 11 of 28

    Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup


    The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

    This butternut squash soup recipe is both intriguing and easy. Cooking it in the crockpot makes it nearly effortless. Adding apples and coconut milk, along with cayenne, garlic, nutmeg, and thyme ensures you'll have a flavorful soup that everyone will enjoy.

  • 12 of 28

    Butternut Squash Lasagna

    butternut squash lasagna

    The Spruce / Jennifer Perillo

    A bubbling baked lasagna is the perfect winter dish, and this recipe using butternut squash offers up a delicious version that is a little different. The squash is roasted with some sage and then mashed before it is layered with bechamel sauce, a ricotta-mozzarella mixture, and fresh lasagna noodles. Grated Pecorino-Locatelli is sprinkled on top and then the dish is baked until golden brown.

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  • 13 of 28

    Instant Pot Butternut Squash

    instant pot butternut squash in a serving bowl
    Diana Rattray

    A quick dish that's full of flavor, this Instant Pot recipe for butternut squash is your solution when you need either a simple side dish or cooked squash for soup, casserole, or risotto. After only a few minutes in the pressure cooker, the butternut squash is ready to be used or topped with almonds, cinnamon, and sugar for a tasty side dish.

  • 14 of 28

    Acorn Squash With Cornbread Stuffing

    Acorn squash recipe

    The Spruce / Victoria Heydt

    Stuffed acorn squash makes an attractive vegetarian main dish or an impressive side dish. Apple, dried fruit, and herbs flavor the cornbread stuffing. Add cooked, crumbled sausage if you'd like to bulk it up for non-vegetarians.

  • 15 of 28

    Hasselback Butternut Squash

    Hasselback Butternut Squash

    The Spruce / Leah Maroney

    For a simple winter squash side dish with a show-stopping presentation, make hasselback butternut squash. The technique is easier than it looks but adds a nice touch to the dinner table.

  • 16 of 28

    Butternut Squash Noodles

    Butternut Squash Noodles

    Anita Schecter 

    Spiralized, butternut squash makes for tender, flavorful noodles. This recipe drapes it in a creamy, savory garlic and sage sauce for a tasty side dish. Top with grilled chicken or shrimp to make it a main.

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  • 17 of 28

    Pumpkin Hummus

    pumpkin hummus

     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

    Creamy pumpkin purée and fresh sage add lovely fall flavor to this homemade hummus. It's quick and easy to make and is a pretty addition to a line-up of autumn appetizers.

  • 18 of 28

    ​Butternut Squash Ravioli

    ​Butternut Squash Ravioli With White Wine Sauce

    The Spruce

    A delicate filling of roasted butternut squash is stuffed into wonton wrappers before being topped with a creamy white wine sauce and roasted hazelnuts. This ravioli is a decadent main dish that's sure to impress at any dinner party.

  • 19 of 28

    Pumpkin Loaf Cake

    Pumpkin Loaf Cake With Vanilla Butter Frosting

    angelaauclair / Moment / Getty Images

    One of the easiest ways to get your pumpkin spice fix is a tender, moist loaf cake. Simply combine the ingredients—you can use canned pumpkin or roasted fresh pumpkin—bake, and top with a classic vanilla frosting for a sweet treat.

  • 20 of 28

    Deep-Fried Butternut Squash

    Deep Fried Butternut Squash

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    Turn your home into a state fair with this deep-fried delicacy. The crispy-on-the-outside and tender-on-the-inside sticks can go sweet (syrup) or savory (salsa or cheese) depending on your dipping sauce.

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  • 21 of 28

    Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash With Sage Brown Butter Sauce

    spaghetti squash with brown butter and sage sauce in serving bowl
    Diana Rattray

    Cooked in the Instant Pot, spaghetti squash is a quick and easy side dish or main dish. No need to roast it for an hour, just steam it in the pressure cooker for a few minutes. Tossed with a brown butter sage sauce, it's vegetarian and delicious.

  • 22 of 28

    ​Maple Glazed Delicata Squash Rings

    ​Maple Glazed Delicata Squash Rings

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    Delicata squash is beautifully striped when whole, and has a tender, delicate skin when cooked, so there's no need to peel it. Cut into rings and roasted with maple and butter, it's a simple side dish that the whole family will love.

  • 23 of 28

    ​Bacon and Butternut Squash Grilled Cheese

    ​Bacon and Butternut Squash Grilled Cheese

    The Spruce / Mackenzie Smith

    Simple, but packed with sweet-salty flavor, this grilled cheese is filled with butternut squash, crispy bacon, and melted gouda. Serve with a simple salad and it's a sandwich worthy of dinnertime.

  • 24 of 28

    ​Baked Pumpkin Empanadas

    ​Baked Pumpkin Empanadas

    Annabelle Breakey / Digital Vision / Getty Images

    Empanadas stuffed with a pumpkin filling are a festive fall and winter appetizer. Make your dough first, and bake them instead of frying for a less fatty take on the dish.

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  • 25 of 28

    Smoked Acorn Squash

    Smoked Acorn Squash

     Charles Islander / Getty Images

    Smoking isn't just for meats—you can smoke acorn squash, too! The aroma goes well with sausage, beef, or pork, but the squash can also be used as a base for an amped-up soup.

  • 26 of 28

    Butternut Squash Cupcakes

    Butternut squash cupcakes recipe

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

    Use leftover cooked winter squash to make moist, spiced cupcakes. These have the same flavors as a pumpkin dessert and are especially good topped with orange buttercream frosting.

  • 27 of 28

    Warm Roasted Pumpkin Salad

    Warm Roasted Pumpkin Salad With Maple Tahini Dressing

    The Spruce / Anita Schecter 

    You can swap out any roasted winter squash in this warm winter salad. A simple dressing of tahini, lemon, and maple syrup pairs well with all varieties and fresh greens.

  • 28 of 28

    ​Harvest Pork and Butternut Squash Stew

    ​Harvest Pork and Butternut Squash Stew

    Getty Images

    Pork shoulder is slowly braised until tender and makes the base of a hearty stew with squash, potatoes, and peas. It's a stick-to-your-ribs dish that's especially good on a cold winter night.