Stuffed Acorn Squash Recipe with Italian Sausage and Rice is a dish that embodies the essence of fall. The acorn squash serves as a natural bowl, holding a hearty filling of Italian sausage, rice, and cheese, all seasoned with aromatic herbs like sage and thyme. The dish is as pleasing to the eye as it is to the palate, making it a perfect centerpiece for any autumnal feast.
What sets this dish apart is its versatility. You can easily swap out ingredients to suit your taste or dietary restrictions. Whether you’re looking for a cozy family dinner or a dish to impress at a fall gathering, this Stuffed Acorn Squash has got you covered. It’s a knife-and-fork kind of meal that’s sure to leave everyone asking for seconds.
Stuffed Acorn Squash recipe
- 3 medium-sized acorn squash
- 2 tbsp. olive oil for squash
- Salt and pepper
- 2 tbsp. olive oil for filling
- 8 sage leaves, chopped
- 1 lb. ground Italian sausage
- 8 oz. baby bella mushrooms, sliced
- 1/2 red onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 c. cooked rice
- 1/3 c. heavy cream
- 1 c. grated Fontina or Monterey Jack cheese
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Place on a baking sheet, brush with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes, then flip and roast for another 15 minutes.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F.
- Heat olive oil in a skillet and add sage leaves. Add the sausage and cook until browned.
- In the same skillet, add mushrooms, onion, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper. Cook until softened.
- Stir in cooked rice, heavy cream, and 1/2 cup of cheese.
- Fill the roasted squash with the mixture and top with remaining cheese.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes. Garnish with fresh thyme and black pepper.
Prep Time: 15 minutes | Cooking Time: 60 minutes | Total Time: 75 minutes
Kcal: 550 kcal | Servings: 6 servings
What Pairs Well with Acorn Squash?
Acorn squash has a mildly sweet and nutty flavor, making it a versatile ingredient that pairs well with a wide range of foods. According to Food Network, it can be combined with both sweet and savory ingredients. For instance, you can pair it with:
- Meats: Such as chicken, pork, and beef.
- Vegetables: Like Brussels sprouts, carrots, and onions.
- Fruits: Apples and cranberries are excellent choices.
- Herbs and Spices: Sage, thyme, nutmeg, and allspice complement the squash’s flavors.
- Cheeses: Parmesan and cheddar can add a creamy texture and rich flavor.
How to Cut Acorn Squash for Stuffing?
Cutting acorn squash for stuffing can be a bit tricky due to its hard skin and unique shape. According to The Spruce Eats, the easiest way to cut acorn squash is from stem to end. Use a sharp chef’s knife and carefully make a cut on one side between two of the ridges. Continue cutting on the same line, repositioning and flipping your squash over as needed, until you’ve cut all the way through. Once cut, you can scoop out the seeds and proceed with your stuffing recipe.
Martha Stewart’s Take on Cooking Acorn Squash?
Martha Stewart offers a plethora of recipes for acorn squash, ranging from soups and salads to stuffed and baked versions. According to her website, acorn squash can be roasted, puréed, pickled, or even marinated. One of her favorite preparations is halving the squash, seeding it, and roasting it until golden brown with butter and brown sugar melting into a pool inside.
Do You Cook Acorn Squash with the Skin On?
Yes, you can! The skin of the acorn squash is actually edible. Martha Stewart mentions that the thin skin makes it easier to cut and peel than many larger, hard-skinned squashes. You can cook it in the skin and eat the entire thing, which adds to its versatility and ease of preparation.