How to cook butternut squash

Butternut squash is an excellent vegetable for adding sweetness to a variety of dishes. Whether blended into wholesome a butternut squash soup, or roasted with root vegetables in the oven until its juices caramelise, squash is a wonderfully versatile ingredient.

Starchy and filling, squash is often used in many vegetarian dishes like in our recipes for vegetable korma or vegan butternut squash tacos al pastor. The two most popular methods for cooking butternut squash are boiling and roasting. Here, we’ll show you how to cook butternut squash both ways.

How to prepare butternut squash

No matter how you plan to cook your butternut squash, it’s essential you know how to prepare and chop it first. Butternut squash is a large and heavy vegetable, so chopping it into smaller pieces can be a tricky task that requires a large, sharp knife. Begin by top and tailing your squash, then peel using a peeler (or knife if your peeler isn’t sharp enough). Slice the squash in half (width ways) and use a large spoon to remove the seeds. Next, cut the squash into chunks ready to be cooked.

Different methods of how to cook butternut squash

If you’re adding your squash to a soup or curry, then boiling it will help the squash to absorb flavours and cook quickly. Start by frying your squash in olive oil for around 5 minutes, then add enough liquid to cover the squash and leave to simmer over a medium heat for about 7-10 minutes. For soups, boil your squash in vegetable stock, or alternatively, you can boil your squash in coconut milk, like in our roasted cumin, chickpea and spinach curry recipe.

Roasting your squash in the oven will allow it to caramelise, bringing out its sweet and nutty flavours. First, tip your chopped squash into a roasting tray and cover with a drizzle of olive oil. Toss together with some salt and pepper and roast in the oven for 25-30 mins at 200C. If you want your squash to take on extra flavour, try adding herbs and spices like sage, garlic, cumin or mild chilli powder before roasting in the oven.