I think fall may be my favorite season for cooking. I love finding new ways to use fall flavors, especially using fall produce like the plentiful varieties of squash. My favorite is recipes for stuffed acorn squash like this one. Check out this guide to learn how to cook acorn squash in different ways and the health benefits it has to offer, or just hit the “jump to recipe” button above to skip to the making this delicious and healthy holiday side dish for WW. (But pin it for later, lots of good info here!)
Stuffed Acorn Squash Is Such A Perfect Holiday Side Dish for WW!
A tasty and healthy alternative to traditional Thanksgiving sides, this protein-packed stuffed acorn squash is packed with nutrients. Every bite of this delightful dish combines crispy Canadian bacon, rich Portobello mushrooms, sweet dates, and aromatic sage. In addition, this recipe is more filling with lentils and walnuts, so perhaps you'll be less inclined to indulge on desserts.
What is Acorn Squash?
During the winter, we often see an overabundance of squash, but we mainly think of pumpkins. However, you have probably see an acorn squash without realizing that is what it is. It's literally shaped like an acorn with a hard outer skin that can be anywhere from white to dark green. The dark green is the most common and typically have a bright patch of orange on top.
What is the Nutritional Value of Acorn Squash?
If one of your zero point foods is starchy veggies, then you are in luck! Acorn squash is a zero point food for you on WW PersonalPoints! Acorn squash benefits your body by being a great source of vitamin C and B vitamins which help your immune system and metabolism. It's also a fiber-rich food to aid in digestion as well. You can read more indepth about the nutritional value of acorn squash on Healthline.
How Do You Start Preparing Acorn Squash for Cooking?
Just like any other squash, the first step is to cut the squash in half and remove the seeds. Then you will lightly oil the flesh with either cooking spray or oil, depending on your preferences.
What Do I Do with the Acorn Squash Seeds?
Check out this awesome video about roasting acorn squash seeds! They make a delicious and nutritious snack.
What Is The Best Way To Cook Acorn Squash?
Especially for this recipe, I've found the best way to cook the acorn squash is by roasting it in the oven at 400 degrees for about 50-60 minutes or until you can easily poke it with a fork. You can make acorn squash in the instant pot, air fryer, slow cooker or microwave as well.
Instant Pot Acorn Squash:
Here is an easy recipe for acorn squash in the instant pot. Add 1 cup of water and place the trivet inside. After you have seasoned it the way you like, place squash halves on top of the trivet. Then, lock lid and close pressure valve, setting it to high pressure for 5 minutes. Allow it to naturally release for about 7 minutes, then fast release to pull it out.
Acorn Squash in Air Fryer:
I love cooking acorn squash in air fryer, but I know this isn't an option for everyone. The best way to use an air fryer for acorn squash is to prepare it as you normally would for the oven. Then place the two halves cut side down in the air fryer basket. Set your air fryer to 325 degrees for 20 minutes. Flip them to cut side up and continue air frying at 400 degrees for 10 minutes.
Acorn Squash in Crockpot
If you plan on being letting your meal cook throughout the day and slow cooker meals are your thing, here's the trick. Add 1/2 cup of water to the slow cooker and prepare your acorn squash as normal. You will place the squash cut side up and cook either on low for 4-6 hours or high for 2-4 hours.
Acorn Squash in Microwave:
While this may be the fastest method, I definitely prefer roasted acorn squash in the air fryer or the oven to using a microwave. However, if you need to use a microwave, start with a microwave safe dish that has just enough water to cover the bottom or about 2 tbsp. Slice the acorn squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Place the cut side down and cook for 6 minutes. Then flip it over, add in any additional seasonings and cook for another 2-4 minutes until squash is perfectly tender.
What should I serve stuffed acorn squash with?
There are several dishes that would pair well with this side dish. I definitely recommend it for a Thanksgiving meal!
- Roasted Cauliflower and Apple Mash with Crispy Brussels Sprouts
- Citrus Maple Glazed Pork Chops
- Leftover Turkey Marsala Soup
- Kale Stuffed Salmon
- Pan Seared Grouper
How To Make The BEST Stuffed Squash For Weight Watchers
How Many Points Are In This Recipe?
With the new Plan, points can vary for diabetics. Points can also vary with different brands. Please use your recipe maker to determine your exact points.
Are You on WW Connect?
Find me on WW Connect @Sassycooking_Alyssa to see my full recipe list!
- 3 acorn squash, cut in half and seeds removed
- 3-4 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 4 oz. Canadian Bacon, diced
- 1½ lbs. Portobello mushrooms, roughly chopped
- ½ medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 1 c. green lentils, cooked
- 1 1/2 T. fresh sage, finely chopped
- ¼ c. dry red wine
- 1/3 c. dates, roughly chopped
- ¼ c. walnuts, chopped
- ¼ c. Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
- Non Stick Cooking Spray
- Position oven rack to center position, then preheat oven to 400°F. Spray a large baking dish with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
- Place the acorn squash halves cut side up in prepared baking dish and spray cut edges with olive oil cooking spray. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste. Place baking dish on center rack in pre-heated oven and roast for 40 minutes, or until the squash is fork tender.
- While the squash is roasting, heat a large non stick skillet over medium heat. Add minced garlic and Canadian bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly browned, approximately 2-3 minutes.
- Add chopped mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until they start to brown, approximately 4-5 minutes. Add sliced onions and continue cooking, stirring once or twice, for another 3-4 minutes.
- Stir green lentils, fresh sage, and red wine into the skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture thickens, approximately 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the chopped dates and toasted walnuts. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste. Set aside.
- When ready, remove cooked squash from oven and cool slightly before filling each half with the Portobello mushroom mixture. Sprinkle each half with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
- Return stuffed squash to oven for another 5-10 minutes, or until heated through and the cheese starts to melt. Remove from oven and serve immediately. Enjoy!
Nutrition InformationYield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 243Total Fat 6gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 4gCholesterol 16mgSodium 323mgCarbohydrates 36gFiber 11gSugar 9gProtein 15g
*This is an automatic calculation by a third party app*
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