Butternut Squash: A Simple Side

Heather says:

With cooler temperatures come falling prices, at least for squashes. Take advantage and enjoy one of the easiest side dishes known to man, baked butternut squash. It’s so simple, there’s not really even a recipe.

Butternut Squash with brown sugarPreheat your oven to 350F.

Cut your butternut squash in half, lengthwise.

Scoop out the seedsUse a spoon to scoop out the seeds.

Grab a 9 x 13 pan and place both halves cut side down in the pan. Add about 1/4″ of water to the pan. We’re not trying to drown the squash, just keep it from drying out.

Bake for one hour. Check it after 50 minutes or so by taking a fork and poking it. If the skin pierces easily, remove it from the oven. Scoop out the flesh to serve. I like to add a touch of butter and a light sprinkling of brown sugar.

It tastes like autumn.

If you’re wondering, I also use this technique for acorn and spaghetti squashes. Spaghetti squash is slightly different, as the flesh is stringy. You can use a fork to scrape it out and it works well sweet or savory. In fact, some people like to use spaghetti squash as an alternative to pasta. There’s one sitting on the counter, so I should be able to use it, soon.


  1. Lola on February 22, 2012 at 5:59 pm

    This dish sounds supper easy and amazing. But how long would you bake it at 400 degrees?

  2. Mel B on October 27, 2009 at 1:49 pm

    We grew a whole crop of butternuts this year in our backyard and they can then last in the pantry for months without going bad. My basic recipe is to first peel the butternut, then cut into cubes. Then peel, core and slice a granny smith apple. Put everything into a baking dish and sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon and bake for like 25 minutes at about 350 – until squash is soft. YUMMY!

  3. Jennifer on October 25, 2009 at 7:56 pm

    Yum… this sounds so good!! I love how you described it as the taste of autumn!

  4. @JennFowler on October 23, 2009 at 9:06 am

    I love squash! Actually I have a butternut & acorn sitting on the counter waiting to be cooked this week. Ymmy.

  5. CJ McD on October 22, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    I love, love, love winter squash, especially butternut.

    Quick trick for cutting those tough squash.:

    Pierce the squash in several places with the tip of a sharp knife. Place in the microwave and cook for 2-3 minutes. The flesh will be slightly softer and MUCH easier to cut.

  6. Stacy on October 22, 2009 at 4:58 pm

    We just had acorn squash cooked somewhat like this, only in the microwave, last night with a pork roast from the crock pot. It was good. I do something like this only in the microwave because I'm too impatient or late to wait for the oven, and because I think where we live the electricity is cheaper than the propane used to bake for an hour. However, if I was cooking something else in the oven, I'd do it this way. Squash is one of my family's favorites.

  7. SharonBinWA on October 22, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    Nothing better than squash with a pork roast. Yum. I fix mine in a very similar way…face down on a jelly roll pan, with a little water. But then I cover with heavy foil. 15 minutes before I take them out, I remove the foil, flip the squash over, fill their holes with brown sugar and butter, then slide them back in the oven. Thanks for giving us a good reminder to start preparing these now that fall is here.

  8. KCcat on October 22, 2009 at 3:09 pm

    I bake the acorn squash with maple syrup and butter…YUM!

  9. julie on October 22, 2009 at 3:05 pm

    this sounds soooo good….I made butternut squash soup about a week or so ago–yummy


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