This Stuffed Acorn Squash recipe is a filling main dish perfect anytime and for a vegetarian Thanksgiving. It's a colorful dish full of exciting flavors that's hearty and satisfying. Ready in about 30 minutes.
The delicious flavors in this stuffed squash make it a fall favorite. The creamy squash adds a hearty texture to the light stuffing. It's very filling and packed with great nutrition.
If you don't think you are a winter squash lover, try this. Acorn squash has a very mild flavor and the stuffing inside of the squash blends to make it a new favorite! Great for a cold weather time of year main dish or a new option for a holiday meal.
The mix of protein-rich cooked grain, lentils, and vegetables make it a complete meal. A side green salad is all you'd need.
What makes it skinny?
- No oil used. Only olive oil spray.
- Lean plant-based protein from the lentils and quinoa
Recipe Ingredient Notes
Acorn squash. You'll need one squash halved for two servings. Scrape out the seeds and membrane.
Lentils. Use prepared lentils either canned or home cooked. If making them yourself use green or brown lentils which do not disintegrate when cooked (like red lentils do).
Quinoa. Start with ½ cup prepared quinoa.
How to cut an acorn squash
Acorn squash is thick so cutting it requires a large heavy sharp knife and going slowly. Start on a flat surface.
Trick: cut a off the stem or the pointed tip on the bottom to create a flat base.
Stand the squash on the flat end and cut through one side, from the top of the squash to flat end. Turn the squash around and cut from top to end again.
This is an easier way to cut through the whole squash rather than trying to cut in half directly through the acorn squash.
How to make Stuffed Acorn Squash - Step-by-Step
STEP 1. Preparation
Pre heat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet or large baking pan with foil for easy clean up and spray lightly with non-stick cooking spray.
STEP 2. Bake the acorn squash
Lightly spray the cut side of the squash with olive oil spray. Place the squash halves cut sides of the squash facing down onto the prepared pan (photo 1). Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes or until fork tender (photo 3).
STEP 3. Make stuffing
While the squash roasts make the stuffing. In a large bowl combine the prepared quinoa, lentils, diced onion, pomegranate seeds, chopped Italian parsley and mint, lemon juice (photo 4-6). Toss to mix together. Add salt and black pepper to taste.
STEP 4. Fill and serve
When the squash is done add to a serving plate. Divide half the stuffing into each squash cavity and serve hot. NOTE: the stuffing may have cooled however when mixed with the squash it will rewarm.
Substitute ground meat. Cooked ground turkey or chicken could also be substituted for either the quinoa or lentils if desired. Consider ground turkey Italian sausage too. This obviously will no longer be a vegetarian version and calories will need to be adjusted.
Sauté the onions. In the stuffing the raw onion flavor is not overly strong however if you store the stuffing it becomes stronger. If desired saute the onions before adding to the stuffing. Use a nonstick skilled sprayed lightly with non-stick spray. Saute until the onions are transluscent. Add to the stuffing.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes! You don't have to wrestle them out of the pomegranate fruit. Look for containers of just the arils (seeds) in the produce section of your grocery store.
You can cut and clean out the squash up to 3 days before hand. You can make the stuffing the day before and rewarm it in the microwave before adding to the roasted squash. If the squash has been refrigerated a few additional minutes cook time may be needed.
How to Store
The cut uncooked acorn squash can be stored covered with plastic wrap or in an airtight container for up to 3 days before cooking.
The cooked squash and stuffing can be stored for up to 4 days and reheated in a microwave. See the note about the onions in the Variations section.
WW Personal Points
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Stuffed Acorn Squash with Quinoa and Lentils
- 1 acorn squash halved with membrane and seeds removed
- ½ cup cooked quinoa
- ½ cup cooked lentils canned or homemade; use green or brown lentils
- ¼ cup diced red onion
- ⅓ cup pomegranate seeds (arils)
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 425 ˚F. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.
- Cut the squash in half. Scoop out the seeds inside.
- Lightly spray the cut side of the squash with olive oil spray. Place the squash on a baking sheet cut side down. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 30 minutes.
- While the squash bakes combine the cooked quinoa, cooked lentils, onion, pomegranate, parsley, mint, lemon juice, in a large bowl. Mix well to combine everything. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Remove squash from the oven, and divide the filling between the two halves.
- Serve immediately.
- Acorn squash is thick so cutting it requires a large heavy sharp knife and going slowly. Start on a flat surface.
- Trick: cut a off the stem or the pointed tip on the bottom to create a flat base.
- Stand the squash on the flat end and cut through one side, from the top of the squash to flat end. Turn the squash around and cut from top to end again.
- This is an easier way to cut through the whole squash rather than trying to cut in half directly through the acorn squash.