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Stuffed Butternut Squash with Spinach, Bacon, and Cheese

Stuffed Butternut Squash with Spinach, Bacon, and Cheese is a perfect recipe to make in the Fall and Winter.  The stuffing is creamy and cheesy and pairs well with the sweet flavor of the butternut squash.   This gluten-free recipe is a perfect addition to the holiday menu and is also great for an easy weeknight meal.

stuffed butternut squash with spinach, bacon, and cheese on a white plate

Stuffed Butternut Squash – easy side dish or main meal

This is an incredibly easy recipe that will for sure be a crowd pleaser!  The butternut squash is first roasted in the oven for about 40 minutes.  In the meantime, you will prepare the delicious filling made with cream cheese, Parmesan cheese, spinach, and bacon!  After the butternut squash is roasted, stuff it with the cheesy filling and reheat it in the oven (or under the broiler) briefly.  That’s it!  It’s a simple recipe that a whole family will love!  Easy enough to make it on a busy weeknight, yet the presentation is so appealing that you can serve it when you have company over.  You can serve it as a side dish or as a meal in itself!

Holiday recipe

What can be more attractive on a holiday table than a colorful, festive dish featuring seasonal ingredients?  Butternut Squash stuffed with Cheese, Bacon, and Spinach is a great side dish to serve for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and even New Year’s Eve!  It will surely please almost every taste because this dish combines both savory and sweet flavors in a perfect combination!

stuffed butternut squash with spinach, bacon, and cheese on a white plate

Main ingredients

  • Butternut squash is the star of the show!  It’s a winter squash with a beautiful orange color that has a sweet and nutty flavor.  Fun fact: Did you know that in Australia it’s called butternut pumpkin?
  • Cream cheese adds creaminess and great texture to the filling.  Use softened cream cheese by heating it in the microwave oven briefly.
  • Parmesan cheese – use shredded or grated parmesan.  It’s always best to shred or grate the cheese yourself!
  • Spinach – I used fresh spinach, but frozen spinach can certainly be used!  Make sure to thaw it and drain it from any liquid.  I would even pat it dry with paper towels.
  • Bacon – use chopped, cooked bacon.  It’s easy to cook the bacon on a foil-lined baking sheet in the oven at 350 F.

How to make stuffed butternut squash (step-by-step photos)

Prepare the butternut squash

Slice each one in half lengthwise. Keep fingers away from the knife to avoid injury. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and fleshy strands tangled with the seeds.

sliced butternut squash cut sides up on a baking sheet

Drizzle the cut sides of butternut squashes with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

sliced butternut squash seasoned with olive oil, salt, and pepper on a parchment paper lined baking sheet

Turn the squash over, and place it cut sides down on a baking sheet. Tip: you can line the baking sheet with parchment paper for easy clean-up.

sliced butternut squash cut sides down on a parchment paper lined baking sheet

Roast it for 40 minutes

Then, roast the butternut squash in the preheated oven at 400 F for 40 minutes.

Prepare the cheese mixture

Next, combine cooked spinach with softened cream cheese and shredded Parmesan cheese.    Mix everything well.  Fold in chopped cooked bacon. Tip: save a few bacon pieces to arrange on top of the cheese mixture.

Stuff the squash

By this time, you have roasted the butternut squash for 40 minutes. Remove it from the oven and turn cooked squash halves cut sides up.  Let it cool slightly.
roasted butternut squash on the baking sheet

Using a spoon, scoop out the flesh leaving about a 1-inch border along the sides.  See photos for more clarity:

scooping out the flesh out of the roasted butternut squash on a baking sheet

roasted butternut squashed with the scooped out flesh leaving about a 1-inch border along the sides

Divide the spinach, bacon, and cheese mixture among the 4 halves and stuff the squash until the mixture is leveled.

roasted butternut squash stuffed with spinach and cheese on a baking sheet

Top with the chopped cooked bacon.

roasted butternut squash stuffed with spinach and cheese and chopped cooked bacon on top on a baking sheet

Bake it some more and broil

Roast the stuffed butternut squash in the preheated oven at 400 F for 15 more minutes until the cheese mixture melts.
Optionally, broil for 3 or 5 minutes to get golden crust over cheese.

stuffed butternut squash with spinach, bacon, and cheese on a baking sheet

Substitutions

  • You can use either butternut squash or acorn squash.  When using acorn squash, keep in mind that they are smaller in size and bake faster in the oven (about 30 minutes in the preheated oven at 400 F).
  • You can use Asiago cheese or Gruyere cheese instead of Parmesan.
  • Other greens besides spinach that will work well in stuffed butternut squash are kale and arugula.

Storage and Reheating Tips

What I love about this recipe is that it stores well and reheats well!

  • Fridge.  Refrigerate the leftover stuffed butternut squash in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
  • Reheat in the oven.  Reheat it in the preheated oven at 350 F for about 30 minutes.
  • Reheat in the microwave oven.  You can also microwave the stuffed butternut squash.  For best and fastest results, you can take the spinach, bacon, and cheese mixture out of the butternut squash, and reheat this mixture and the butternut squash separately.  Then add back the cheese mixture into the butternut squash.

What to serve with stuffed butternut squash

Serve something equally simple and easy-to-make, such as these delicious holiday side dishes:

More butternut squash recipes you might like

stuffed butternut squash with spinach, bacon, and cheese on a white plate

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Stuffed Acorn Squash

Stuffed Butternut Squash with Spinach, Bacon, and Cheese is a perfect recipe to make in the Fall and Winter.  The stuffing is creamy and cheesy and pairs really well with the sweet flavor of the butternut squash.   This gluten-free recipe is a perfect addition to the holiday menu and is also great for an easy weeknight meal.

Prep Time 20 mins

Cook Time 1 hr

Total Time 1 hr 20 mins

Course Side Dish

Cuisine American, Mediterranean

Servings 4 people

Calories per serving 706 kcal

Author: Julia

Ingredients

Butternut squash

  • 2 butternut squash medium
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • black pepper freshly ground

Spinach, bacon, and cheese mixture

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 oz spinach fresh
  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese shredded
  • 6 strips bacon cooked and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons fresh thyme

Instructions 

How to roast butternut squash

  • Preheat oven to 400 F.

  • Prepare the butternut squash. Slice each one in half lengthwise. Keep fingers away from the knife to avoid injury. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and fleshy strands tangled with the seeds.

  • Place butternut squash cut sides up on a baking sheet. Drizzle the cut sides of butternut squashes with olive oil and rub the oil into the squash. Season generously with salt and pepper. Turn the squash over, and place it cut sides down on a baking sheet. Tip: you can line the baking sheet with parchment paper for easy clean-up.

  • Roast in the preheated oven at 400 F for 40 minutes.

Make spinach, bacon, and cheese mixture

  • While the butternut squash is roasted, prepare the cheese mixture.

  • In a medium skillet, heat olive oil on medium heat and add fresh spinach. Cook for about 5 minutes until the spinach wilts. If there is any liquid in the pan, drain it.

  • Add cream cheese to a microwave-safe large-sized bowl. Soften cream cheese briefly in the microwave oven. Make sure the cheese does not actually melt, just softens.

  • Add shredded Parmesan, cooked spinach, and half of the chopped cooked bacon to the same bowl. Mix everything well. Tip: save the remaining half of the bacon pieces to arrange on top of the cheese mixture.

How to stuff butternut squash

  • By this time, you have roasted the butternut squash for 40 minutes. Remove it from the oven and turn cooked squash halves cut sides up.

  • Let it cool slightly. Using a spoon, scoop out the flesh leaving about a 1-inch border along the sides. (For reference, I provide the step-by-step photos, including for this step, above the recipe card).

  • Divide the spinach, bacon, and cheese mixture among the 4 halves and stuff the squash until the mixture is leveled. Top with the remaining chopped cooked bacon.

  • Roast the stuffed butternut squash in the preheated oven at 400 F for 15 more minutes until the cheese mixture melts.

  • Optionally, broil for 3 or 5 minutes to get golden crust over cheese. Watch closely and be very careful not to burn the squash and the cheese mixture. Tip: Broil on the second oven rack from the top – not on the very top rack so that it doesn’t burn.  Do watch carefully because all ovens are different.  My squashes were fine broiled for 5 minutes on the second oven rack from the top.

  • Top with freshly ground black pepper and fresh thyme.

Nutrition

Nutrition Information

Stuffed Acorn Squash

Amount per Serving

% Daily Value*

Saturated Fat

Trans Fat

Polyunsaturated Fat

Monounsaturated Fat

Cholesterol

Potassium

Carbohydrates

Vitamin A

Vitamin C

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed. It should not be used as a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Keyword stuffed butternut squash

stuffed butternut squash with spinach, bacon, and cheese on a white plate


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