Stuffed Acorn Squash: With a Quinoa, Hazelnut, Apple Stuffing (gluten-free)

This gluten-free, vegan recipe is a perfect entertaining entree for  holiday celebrations.  It is a great go-to to fit any dietary requests, and the flavor will impress even your pickiest guests.

MEDIUM          Servings: 6     Ready In: 60 minutes

Acorn Squash with Quinoa Hazelnut Apple Stuffing - Healthy, Plant-Based, Gluten-Free, Oil-Free, Vegan, Holiday Recipe

Acorn Squash with Quinoa Hazelnut Apple Stuffing - Healthy, Plant-Based, Gluten-Free, Oil-Free, Vegan, Holiday Recipe

Chef's Tip: Diced apple adds a healthy, low-calorie crunch.  Toss in a couple tablespoons of vinegar to prevent browning

Chef's Tip: Diced apple adds a healthy, low-calorie crunch.  Toss in a couple tablespoons of vinegar to prevent browning

Chef's Healthy Tip: The natural sweetness from the roasted squash will balance the savory flavors of the stuffing

Chef's Healthy Tip: The natural sweetness from the roasted squash will balance the savory flavors of the stuffing

Chef's Tip: If cooking for one, small Delicata squash can be stuffed for a perfect single portion.  

Chef's Tip: If cooking for one, small Delicata squash can be stuffed for a perfect single portion.  

Ingredients

2 Acorn Squash
½ cup Quinoa
1 shallot
1 apple
½ cup hazelnuts
2 cups spinach
¼ cup fresh mint
2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
¼ tsp. salt


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Acorn Squash with Quinoa Hazelnut Apple Stuffing - Healthy, Plant-Based, Gluten-Free, Oil-Free, Vegan, Holiday Recipe Pin

Procedure

Gather ingredients. Preheat oven to 425 F. 

To roast the squash: cut the top stem off the squash and cut the squash in half. Use a large spoon to scoop out the seeds. Cut the squash into quarters. Place the squash, cut-side-down, in a roasting pan or dish. Add about 1/2 inch of water to the bottom of the pan. Roast at 425 for 35-45 minutes, until the flesh is tender enough to scoop out. 
When the squash is tender enough to scoop out the flesh with a spoon, remove from the oven and set aside to cool. While the squash roasts, you can make the quinoa filling. 

For the Quinoa Stuffing: Peel and mince the shallots Combine the shallot and quinoa in a medium pot. Cover and toast over medium heat for about 5 minutes, until the quinoa starts to "pop". Add 1 cup of water, cover, and bring to a simmer. Simmer for about 10-12 minutes, until the quinoa is tender. When the quinoa is tender, remove the lid and fluff. Let cool a few minutes in the pot.  While the quinoa cooks, prepare the rest of the stuffing.

To toast the hazelnuts: Place the hazelnuts in the 425 F oven and toast 10-12 minutes, until slightly darkened. Remove from the oven and let cool.  When the hazelnuts are cool enough to handle, roll them in a clean kitchen towel. This will help the skins peel off. You want to get at least half of the skins off as the skin is bitter. Discard the skins. Roughly chop the hazelnuts. 

Core and dice the apple. Roughly chop the spinach and mint.  In a large bowl, combine the apple with the cider vinegar. Stir well to coat the apple. This will help prevent the apple from browning
When the squash is cool enough to handle, carefully scoop out the flesh, keeping the shell intact. 

To assemble the stuffing: Combine the quinoa, hazelnuts, apple, mint, spinach, scooped-out squash, and salt. Stir well to combine. 
Scoop the stuffing into your squash shells.  Place bck in the baking dish.  Cover and bake the squash at 350 for 5-7 minutes, just until warmed, and then serve.  Bake the squash at 350 for 5-7 minutes, just until warmed, and then serve.

Chef's Tip: The quinoa stuffing is also great on its own, just as an elegant side dish. You can make this stuffed squash a day ahead and simply reheat in a covered baking dish (with a little water in the bottom of the dish) for 10-12 minutes at 350


Step-by-Step Photos:

Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving (1/6 recipe)

Calories 246.42
Calories From Fat (28%) 67.79
% Daily Value
Total Fat 8.04g 12%
Saturated Fat 0.67g 3%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 120.49mg 5%
Potassium 994.09mg 28%
Total Carbohydrates 41.25g 14%
Fiber 7.64g 31%
Sugar 8.13g
Protein 7.08g 14%
Calcium 26.67mg 3%
Iron 118.13mg 656%
Vitamin A 2575.11IU 52%
Vitamin C 0mg 0%


How do fall squash get their names? Learn Chef Katie's quick tip on remembering the names of the different varieties and a hint to their flavors. Grab some Delicata Squash, a perfect meal-for-one vegetable! More at: www.plants-rule.com