Butternut squash panade. Picture: Karsten Moran
Butternut squash panade. Picture: Karsten Moran

RECIPES: 3 ways to use butternut squash

By Lutho Pasiya Time of article published Jul 21, 2021

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When it comes to winter flavours, butternut squash cannot be beaten for its versatility and sweet-savoury seasonality. It can be roasted crisp or puréed and is delicious at every stage in between.

It adds warmth and comfort to pretty much any winter dish, from pasta to soups to salads and stuffing.

Plus, it's full of vitamin C and potassium. We would never pick favourites, but butternut squash really gives the pumpkin a run for its money.

Here are three delicious butternut recipes to try.

Butternut squash salad

Serves: 8


Butternut squash salad

1 butternut squash

3 tbs olive oil

1 tsp Szechuan peppercorns, crushed with a pestle and mortar

½ red cabbage

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 bunch of coriander (cilantro), to garnish

For the dressing

1 tbs grapeseed oil

3 tbs soy sauce

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Cut the squash in half lengthways, remove all the seeds, and cut across into thin slices, 5mm thick, with the peel on.

Spread out on a baking sheet lined with baking parchment, mix with the olive oil, Szechuan pepper and salt. Bake for 10 minutes, then leave to cool on the sheet.

While the squash is in the oven, cut the red cabbage into slices, about 5mm thick, rinse in cold water and drain well.

Mix the dressing ingredients together, and just before serving mix the butternut, red cabbage, and dressing together, place on a serving dish, and decorate with coriander (cilantro).

Adapted from Scandinavian Comfort Food by Trine Hahnemann.

Butternut squash panade

Serves: 6-8


2 tbs butter

3 tbs olive oil

3 medium onions, thinly sliced (about 4 cups)

Salt and pepper

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 tsp chopped fresh thyme

2 tsp chopped fresh sage

340g sliced stale country bread (if not quite stale, toast lightly and let cool before using)

450g butternut or other winter squash, peeled and sliced 0.5cm thick

230g Gruyère or Comté cheese, grated

4 cups water or broth, more as needed


Heat the oven to 180ºC. Butter a deep 23-by-33-cm baking dish and set aside.

In a large pan, heat the oil until sizzling over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 8 minutes. Season generously with salt and pepper. Continue cooking until the onions are nicely browned, about 5 minutes more. Stir in the garlic, thyme and sage, then turn off the heat.

Assemble the panade: Line the bottom of the baking dish with half the bread slices. Add a layer of the cooked onion, then a layer of squash. Season squash with salt and pepper. Finish with a layer of grated cheese. Top with the remaining bread slices.

Add the water or broth, and press down on the top layer of bread to make sure the casserole is evenly saturated. Add more if needed to soak the top layer. It should be damp but not swimming in liquid.

Cover with foil, place on a sheet pan, and bake, covered, for 45 minutes, until the squash is tender. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes more, until browned and bubbling on top. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

Vegan butternut squash soup

1 large butternut squash (this recipe also works with a pumpkin but it's not as sweet)

2 large potatoes

3 garlic cloves, peeled

1 red onion

1 veggie stock cube

1 tbs to 1 tbs each of ground turmeric, cumin, garam masala, chilli, and dried coriander (feel free to add other spices or herbs)

1 tsp miso paste

Pinch of salt and some black pepper

750ml boiling water (you might need more, just eyeball it to the consistency you prefer)


Legit is as simple as chopping up all the veggies, adding the spices, herbs, salt and pepper, stock cube, and miso paste on top, then covering it with the water and letting it simmer until it's cooked through. Then just blitz it with a hand-held blender and you're good to go.

Recipe by Lotte Monique.

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