$2.50 And 60 Minute Acorn Squash Bowls
Did you know that you’re only $2.50 away from a seasonal dish that will bring you an incredible amount of joy? Well, you are! This recipe utilizes the entire acorn squash – all the way down to roasting the seeds! – and tops it all off with sautéd vegetables. Furthermore, you’ll be left with no dishes in the sink and a sense of accomplishment that can only come from making something yourself!
Take advantage of low seasonal squash prices at your local grocery store this winter and give this recipe a try!
Ingredients (~4 Servings):
- 2 acorn squash (roughly 3lb total weight)
- 2 organic bell peppers, chopped (green or red)
- 1 white onion, chopped
- 1/2 lb of mushrooms, chopped
- 6 cloves of garlic (optional)
- 2 TBSPs of grapeseed oil
- 1/2 tsp of black pepper
- 3/4 tsp of salt
- Two (2) baking tray lined with aluminum foil or parchment paper
- 10″ Non-stick sauté pan
- Chef’s knife
- Two (2) medium bowls
- Small bowl
- Spoon or spatula for mixing
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- Halve each acorn squash and place them on a prepared baking tray. Slice a sliver off of the bottom of each half so that the squash rest flat on the tray. For acorn squash safety tips and pictures, see the Tips section below!
- Use a spoon to remove the core/seeds and place them in a medium bowl. Cover the seeds with water.
- With grapeseed oil, brush the inside of the squash. Use roughly half of your salt and pepper to season it. Place the squash in the oven and set the timer for 50 minutes.
- Using your hands, separate the squash seeds from the pulp. Discard the pulp and dry the squash seeds with a paper towel. Then place the seeds on the other prepared baking tray topped with some salt and set aside.
- Chop up the onion and garlic and place them in the small bowl. Chop up the peppers and mushrooms and place them in the medium bowl.
- When there are 25 minutes left on the timer for the squash, place the seeds in the oven and set a timer on your phone for 10 minutes.
- Do some cleanup and then flip the seeds once your phone timer goes off and return them to the oven.
- Once the seeds are returned to the oven, heat up the sauté pan to medium heat (5 out of 10 on the burner) and then add ~1 TBSP of grapeseed oil.
- Once the oil is hot, add the small bowl of onion and garlic (just like you’re making $1.75 and 30 Minute and Saag Paneer!) and cook until they start to brown (~3 minutes), stirring occasionally.
- Add the medium bowl of peppers and mushroom along with the rest of the salt and pepper to the sauté pan and cook until they start to brown (~5 minutes), stirring occasionally.
- Remove the acorn squash and seeds from the oven. Plate the acorn squash halves, fill them with vegetables and top with the seeds.
- Pour some wine while you wait 5 minutes for the squash to cool and then enjoy!
Total time = 60 Minutes
Step 2 – Do not try to cut through the stem of the acorn squash! This is dangerous. Even with your sharp knife, the squash can very easily slip. I recommend flipping the squash over and cutting up to the stem on each side and then using your hands to complete the job. This squash cutting process should look something like this:
Also, you don’t need to cut off much to make your squash lay flat. After slicing the bottom, each half should look something like this:
Step 3 – Cover all the yellow parts with oil. The squash should look something like this when entering the oven:
Step 5 – Putting the squash seeds and pulp in water makes the seeds easier to separate. You can remove the seeds underwater to prevent them from going everywhere. You have been warned: the seeds are slippery! To dry them, transfer the seeds to a new paper towel 2-3 times. This is an exercise in patience as the seeds may stick to the paper towel. But power through! It’s so worth it for that extra crunch atop your finished product!
The seeds should look something like this before you put them in the oven:
Step 8: When flipping the seeds, you can add any additional spice you like. Sweet paprika anyone? Yes, please. The reason why you should wait to add the spices is that the spices will burn if in the oven for the full 25 minutes.
Step 10: OPTIONAL: You can add up to a pound of ground meat (turkey, beef, bison) once the vegetables are slightly browned. This will add a little to your cooking time so, if adding meat, start step 8 right after putting the seeds in the oven with 25 minutes remaining on the squash timer.
Step 12 – To determine whether the squash is done, you should be able to insert a fork easily into the yellow meat of the squash. In addition, feel free to top with nuts, seeds, cheese, or anything else you would like. The pictures in this post have cashew cheese and green onion mixed in. Highly recommend!
Step 13 – The squash will be hot right out of the oven! And due to its shape, it will take a little time to cool! Kick back, relax, have some wine, let the flavors meld together and then enjoy!
Note: The squash can be a little difficult to reheat due to their shape. I recommend warming up with squash by itself a little first in the microwave. Then add the vegetables and microwave some more so that all the ingredients are at about the same temperature!
- 2 acorn squash (roughly 3lb total weight) ~ $3
- 2 organic bell pepper ~ $4
- 1 white onion ~ $0.75
- 1/2 lb of organic mushrooms – $2.5
- 6 cloves of garlic (optional) – $0.50
- 2 TBSPs of grapeseed oil – $0.25
- 1/2 tsp of black pepper – negligible
- 3/4 tsp of salt – negligible
Total Cost per dinner for 4 ~ $10
Cost per meal ~ $2.50
Things I love:
- Seasonal produce
- Delicious, nourishing food
- Minimizing food waste
- No clean-up after cooking
Therefore I love this recipe. You get to eat something healthy and unique while not having to spend any of your time thinking about a pile of dishes in the sink. Your mind is free to fully enjoy the meal in front you. And what a delicious meal you’ve made. Give yourself a pat on the back, great job!
As always, make informed food decisions. Know your ingredients, know your costs!