How to Peel and Cut Butternut Squash

How to peel and cut butternut squash recipe

The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 10 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Yield: 1 butternut squash
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
91 Calories
0g Fat
24g Carbs
2g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 91
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 9mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 24g 9%
Dietary Fiber 7g 26%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 34mg 171%
Calcium 93mg 7%
Iron 1mg 8%
Potassium 644mg 14%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Eating squash is one of the best parts of autumn, but prepping butternut can be intimidating.

Whether it's the shape or the density, or the fact that these guys are bigger than many other foods we have to cut up, tackle it one part at a time, you'll see that each part of it is simple to manage.

Below, we provide an easy-to-follow way to peel squash, remove the seeds, and cut it into neat cubes that cook evenly. It's not a hack, it's just a straightforward method. Watch the video to see exactly what to do, and what to avoid.

There are so many ways to cook this nutritious vegetable, whether you roast it or turn it into a soup or make it into lasagna. The sooner you learn how to tackle it yourself, the sooner you can dig in.

To peel and cut a butternut squash of any size, you need:

  • A sharp peeler
  • A large, sharp knife
  • Large cutting board
  • Ice cream scoop or spoon, a grapefruit spoon works well

“Prepping a big wobbly butternut squash for cooking is something many home cooks shy away from. These simple instructions are like a guiding hand in the kitchen. With this guidance and a nice sharp knife you’ll no longer have to rely on those packages of pre-cut squash.” —Joan Velush

How to Peel and Cut Butternut Squash/Tester Image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 1 medium butternut squash

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the equipment and a squash. The knife should have a wide blade and the cutting board should be at least twice as long and wide as the squash.

    Gather the equipment
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  2. Peel the squash with a peeler, preferably one with a Y-shape, holding the squash in one hand, and peeling with the other. Pile up the peels in a relatively neat mound to keep things from getting too slippery on the board. Keep your fingers away from the peeler blade.

    Peel squash
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  3. Lay the squash on the board and slice off the bulb by pressing the knife straight down to sever the bulb from the neck. Do not saw back and forth.

    Lay squash on board
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  4. Scoop out the seeds and squash strings using an ice cream scoop or sturdy spoon.

    Deseed squash
    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  5. Slice the bulb into even-size pieces. Slice the neck into slabs, then sticks, then crosswise into cubes and cook as desired.

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Ways to Cook Butternut Squash

  • Roasting: Drizzle with oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast in a preheated 450 F oven until tender when poked with a knife and browned in spots.
  • Steaming: Steam in a steamer basket until tender in the center.
  • Spiralizing: Butternut necks make really good spiraled noodles that can be eaten instead of pasta.