How to Bake Acorn Squash

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I’m debating whether to make Fifty-Two Cakes into a general recipe site as long as it involves an oven. I’m also debating whether I have the energy to start another 52-week project in which I would do Fifty-Two Cookies. You tell me – do you have any interest in seeing either or both of those things?

Ok, on to learning how to bake acorn squash! I know this is not a dessert, but sweet baked acorn squash is delicious and just sweet enough to be. I’m a member of KC Door to Door Organics, which I would recommend to anyone. I’ll blog more about it sometime. There is always an ingredient in my organics box I’m not super familiar with how to prepare, and I consider it my “challenge ingredient” for that week. The last several boxes my challenge has been eggplant. This time it was a Kansas City local acorn squash.

A little about acorn squash – it’s a wintertime squash that usually has a dark green skin, but apparently golden and white acorn squash exist too. It looks like a big green acorn, imagine that. Apparently you can store these in a cool, dry place (like your basement) for a month or more and they keep just fine because of their thick, tough skin. But it feels like fall for the first time this week and I just had to bake it today. They’re pretty low calorie, a half squash with this recipe is under 150 calories. I didn’t think to bake the seeds like you do pumpkin seeds and accidentally threw them in the compost, but those are edible too. I definitely think I will plant some of these in my garden next year.

I have to thank my friend Lori for the inspiration on how to prepare the acorn squash. (Thanks!) Apparently this is similar to how her parents always prepared it! Without further ado…

Baked Acorn Squash Recipe Ingredients

  • 1 whole acorn squash
  • 1-2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2-3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • Up to 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • A dash of cinnamon, baking spice or whatever sounds good
Baked Acorn Squash Recipe Directions
It’s super easy and fast to make, the longest part is just waiting on it to come out of the oven. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Cut the acorn squash in half. I had to use my biggest Wusthof knife and really throw some weight into it.  Use a spoon to scrape out the squash seeds in the center. Set aside if you want to bake them separately. Score the squash with a knife or poke holes with a skewer (not going so far as to pierce the skin). In the “bowl” of the squash, coat the yellow parts with 1/2 to a full tablespoon of butter for each side. Rub brown sugar on the butter-coated parts. Drizzle with a bit of maple syrup (whatever you feel like, but don’t go overboard). Sprinkle a dash of baking spice, cinnamon or something else tasty on there. Fill your pan with enough water that it won’t all boil off in the oven. This water will help keep the skin from drying out while it bakes. Place gooey-side up and skin-side down and bake for about an hour or more until the top is golden brown. My favorite part of this baked acorn squash recipe? I only had to wait about 3 minutes after I pulled it out of the oven to eat it. YUM!
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Heather is an advertising professional in Kansas City. She is a vegetarian food-lover who finds joy in cooking, baking and finding new restaurants in new cities. She leads a pack of animals, including her beagle Ford, her shepherd-collie-retriever mix, Otto, and cat, Ahab.

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