Healthy Stuffed Acorn Squash

Healthy Stuffed Acorn Squash

November 16, 2016   6 Comments

Stuffing squash should be an easy win for the healthy crowd.

Acorn squash is beautiful, packed with fiber and vitamins, and easy to make. Check out my lighter roasted acorn squash or my roasted sugar pumpkin recipe if you are looking for a fast fix.

But, unfortunately, we tend to stuff things with bread soaked in olive oil or butter, and sausage. Yikes!

As you can see, I don’t have any bread or sausage in the ingredients for this stuffed squash. I used quinoa and cranberries and it tasted delicious. The key is getting the spices to complement the squash.

Anybody can make butter soaked bread taste good! Quinoa is another kind of challenge.

First, you roast the acorn squash which is incredibly easy. Acorn squash (unlike butternut) is easy to slice and clean. All you do is brush a little maple syrup on it. You don’t have to peel this sqaush – which is pretty much impossible anyway.

I always slice the rounded part of the squash so it sits up and doesn’t roll all over the place.

You make the stuffing while the acorn squash is roasting and it isn’t hard. I like eating this quinoa stuffing on its own. The recipe makes far more stuffing than you can put into the acorn squash and you will be glad! It is a perfect fall salad.

The earthiness of the quinoa pairs well with the sour, sweet cranberries. This is a great alternative to the wild rice stuffings which the low carb people are avoiding. This dish is very low in calories primarily because you aren’t using sausage or bread – but don’t tell anyone!

I think it looks quite pretty too as far as presentation for Thanksgiving. The color of the squash is so vibrant.

You can serve this with a little extra maple syrup to drizzle on top.

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Quinoa-Stuffed Healthy Acorn Squash Recipe

Makes 8 servings

1 – 2lb acorn squash or 2 1lb acorn squash
1 tablespoon maple syrup
½ cup quinoa (uncooked)
1/3 cup blanched and sliced almonds
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup dried cranberries
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Heat oven to 375 F. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. Cut the squash in half down the center and clean out the seeds. Brush the inside of the squash with maple syrup and roast for 40 minutes or until tender.

While the squash is roasting, rinse quinoa in a fine meshed sieve. Heat quinoa and 1 cup of water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover and cook until water is absorbed – about 10 minutes.

In a large saucepan, heat olive oil. Add onion and cook until softened (about 5 minutes) and garlic and stir for one minute. Add almonds to toast for about 2 minutes. Remover the pan from heat and add cook quinoa, onion, garlic, cumin, cinnamon, ginger, lemon juice, dried cranberries, and parsley. Taste and adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper.

When acorn squash is ready, stuff with quinoa mixture. Serve immediately or store separately for later consumption.

For ones serving = 140 calories, 4.6 g fat, 0.5 g saturated fat, 23.3 g carbohydrates, 2.5 g sugar, 3.5 g protein, 3.6 g fiber, 7 mg sodium, 4 SmartPts

Points values are calculated by Snack Girl and are provided for information only. See all Snack Girl Recipes

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After cutting and cleaning, I bake my acorn squash at 350 degrees till almost fork tender, then fill cavity with maple syrup and sausage and bake another 30 minutes. I used to add about 1 teaspoon butter but recently have not been doing that. Just realizing after all these years, been cutting squash in half wrong too!

on November 16, 2016

Can you do this with Delacata squash?

on November 16, 2016

This looks beautiful and healthy, two of my favorites. Another suggestion, for individual servings, I've cut the squash into 4 or 5 rings and after baking filled each with stuffing. Makes a nice but smaller presentation.

on November 16, 2016

Made this yesterday, surprised that I had everything on hand (except for fresh parsley). Absolutely delicious. I would have never thought to combine cumin, cinnamon and ginger! So good.

on November 17, 2016

@Christine - so glad you liked it! thanks for coming back and sharing your experience.

on November 18, 2016

Will definitely be making this. Thank you.

on October 18, 2018

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