Roasted Acorn Squash Stuffed with Wild Rice, Apples and Walnuts

With the holidays swiftly approaching, it’s time to think about a vegan main course that’s worthy of celebration. This recipe is absolutely delicious, has a nice presentation, and possesses delightfully contrasting textures. It takes a bit of time to roast the squash, but it’s easy to do with my step-by-step directions. And the filling is everything I love about U.S. holidays—wild rice, fruit, nuts, shallots. It’s very savory and rich in flavor. So, so good!

If you’re planning on a crazy holiday filled with a lot of different menu offerings, you can assemble this recipe the night before the holiday, store it covered in the fridge, and do the final baking the next day. This recipe is meant to serve 4, but it really depends on the size of your acorn squash. I used two relatively large acorn squash, and had more than enough filling for all four portions. I like using a spoon to eat this recipe—getting a little of the squash flesh and wild rice in every bite.

Roasted Acorn Squash Stuffed with Wild Rice, Apples and Walnuts

2 acorn squash

Olive oil, to brush squash + 2 tsp

1 cup wild rice blend (I used Lundberg Wild Blend Rice)

1 cup broth (fake chicken or vegetable)

¾ cup water

1 Tbsp vegan butter

2 shallots, finely chopped

3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

¼ cup walnuts, chopped

½ tsp dried sage

1 celery stalk, finely chopped

½ cup apple, diced into small cubes

¼ cup frozen peas

2 tsp reduced sodium soy sauce (OR gluten free tamari)

1 Tbsp lemon juice

1 Tbsp nutritional yeast

½ cup fresh parsley, chopped

Salt, to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 400º F. Line a large, shallow pan with parchment paper. Thinly slice off the tops and bottoms of the acorn squashes without puncturing the main cavity or creating a hole (see above photo). I like to use a very sturdy serrated bread knife to slice squash, because it can be a challenge.

2. Slice the squashes directly across the center (see photo above).

3. Scoop out the seeds and stringy bits of the acorn squash. Brush the flesh of the squash with olive oil and season with salt.

4. Place the acorn squash cavity side down on the large shallow pan lined with parchment paper. Bake at 400º F for 35 minutes or until the squash is tender enough to eat. Remove from the oven, and cool until it can be easily handled.

5. While the acorn squash is roasting, add the wild rice blend, broth, water and vegan butter to a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, and then, cover and simmer over low for 35-40 minutes or until the rice is cooked through.

6. In a large skillet, add 2 tsp olive oil, shallots, garlic and walnuts over low heat. Stir around for about 2 minutes, and then, add sage. Constantly stirring, sauté another minute.

7. Stir in the celery and apples, and sauté another 2 minutes.

8. Stir in frozen peas, soy sauce, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, and fresh parsley. Sauté for another minute, and then, taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary (more soy sauce? more lemon?).

9. Flip roasted acorn squashes over on the parchment, and stuff them with wild rice mixture. Bake at 400º F for 10 minutes. Serve.

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