Stuffed Acorn Squash Recipe

This is an all around great dish, whether it's served as a vegan main course or a holiday side dish. You can also serve it unstuffed as a salad, because the filling is just as good cold! 
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 517kcal


Roasted acorn squash

  • 2 large acorn squash
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup, agave or honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • pinch cinnamon

Quinoa stuffing

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large shallot , finely diced
  • 3 carrots , diced
  • 1 cup walnuts , chopped
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup, agave or honey
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa * see notes
  • 1 orange , juiced and zested
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon sumac
  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1 bunch parsley , chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste


Roasted acorn squash

  • Preheat oven to 375F and lightly oil a small casserole dish.
  • Split open acorn squashes and scoop out seeds.
  • Cut a small slice off of the underside of each squash half so they lie flat in the pan.
  • Mix together the oil, maple syrup and spices and then baste the squash.
  • Bake squash until almost done (about 35-45 minutes)

Quinoa stuffing

  • Heat oil in a large pot over medium high heat.
  • Once the pan is hot, add the shallots and saute for a couple of minutes.
  • Add the carrots and cook, stiring often until the carrots have softened but still have a bit of bite.
  • Add the walnuts and cook a couple minutes more. 
  • Pour in the maple syrup and cook, stirring constantly until the mixture becomes dry and caramelized. If the mixture starts to burn, turn down the heat.
  • Turn off the heat and add cooked quinoa, orange juice, zest, pomegranate seeds, parsley and spices then toss to combine.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • When the acorn squash is almost done, take it out of the oven and fill the squash with quinoa stuffing.
  • Bake until the acorn squash is soft and the filling is hot, about 15-20 minutes more.


  • You'll need approximately 2/3rd a cup of uncooked quinoa to make two cups of cooked quinoa. Follow the package instructions to cook the quinoa or make a big batch with our rice cooker method.
  • Prep ahead! The quinoa filling can be made 1-2 days in advance.
  • This recipe is designed as a four person main course, but it can easily be doubled or tripled for parties and used as a side dish.
  • If you’re serving this as a side dish, you’ll want to buy the smallest acorn squash you can find…in that case I’d say 3 acorn squash to one quinoa stuffing recipe. 
  • The quinoa filling is great cold too! You can add cubed roasted squash to the cold filling to serve it as a salad. If you serve it like this, one recipe will feed 6-8 people as a side.


Calories: 517kcal | Carbohydrates: 62g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 344mg | Potassium: 1342mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 9710IU | Vitamin C: 63.2mg | Calcium: 174mg | Iron: 4.8mg