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These easy-to-make stuffed acorn squash halves are perfect for a light fall dinner.
Stuffed Acorn Squash: The Perfect Light Dinner
This is the perfect dish to serve when you’re looking for something light but satisfying.
You can serve it year round because acorn squash and most winter squash is available 365 days of the year. Of course during fall, it’s featured a lot in stores because it’s associated with Thanksgiving. In the autumn, it’s featured at great prices so now is the time to try this.
This stuffed acorn squash is very easy to make too. Since it takes time to bake the squash, this obviously isn’t a ready-in-15-minutes type of meal, but the prep and the cooking is extremely simple.
Choosing The Rice
Most any cooked rice will do so if you have any left over from another recipe or from an Asian take-out meal, use that. It’s a great way to use it too.
However, for these I used brown jasmine rice. It was the perfect variety to use too. Jasmine rice, in any form, has a wonderful flavor that adds so much to anything it’s paired with. The brown variety has all of the attributes of the white kind plus it has a great nutty taste.
If you don’t have any brown jasmine on hand, I really urge you to get a small bag with your next grocery order since it has such a fantastic taste, you’ll find many uses for it.
Nuts, Sausage, Etc
I used sweet Italian sausage and it was delicious. Of course you can use hot sausage–and that may be more convenient actually as it would eliminate the need for the red pepper flakes.
Use fancier sausage too because it can only add to the flavor. Even good old breakfast sausage is a good choice.
When it comes to the pine nuts or soy nuts, they can be eliminated entirely if you don’t have them on hand. They should be toasted for best flavor and they do add variety to the texture of the filling.
Spinach was used for the greens–although kale, mustard or turnip greens will work equally as well.
Stuffed Acorn Squash
- 4 medium acorn squash cut in half and seeds removed
- 1 cup cooked brown jasmine rice
- 6 oz sweet Italian sausage meat
- 1 cup baby spinach
- Pinch red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup roasted pine nuts or soy nuts
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tbs water
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 425F/220C. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Brush cut sides of squash with oil. Place squash cut side down on prepared sheet and bake for 30 minutes or until squash is just tender. Do not overcook. Remove from oven but keep oven running.
- Meanwhile brown sausage meat in a large skillet over medium heat until no pink remains. Add spinach, red pepper flakes and water. Cook until spinach is wilted; remove from heat and add the rice, cheese and pine nuts. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Divide rice mixture evenly between squash halves. Return to oven and bake for about 10 minutes or until heated through.