Stuffing it with quinoa

I’m a big fan of stuffing anything with quinoa. I’ve cooked all kinds of different peppers, meats, and varieties of winter squash that I’ve stuffed quinoa into. This is one of my favorite “stuffing” recipes- and one of my favorite vegan recipes, period.

Meet sweet quinoa stuffed acorn squash:

It’s got a great combination of flavors and textures, and is pretty easy to make. And, as an added bonus, it’s really filling. The carnivorous husband even digs it.

The ingredients:

Sweet quinoa stuffed acorn squash

(Serves 2)

1 acorn squash

½ c quinoa

1 ½ c water

½ small yellow squash

½ small Vidalia onion

1 small shallot

1 large carrot

2 white mushrooms

2 T walnuts

2 T dried cranberries

¼ to ½ tsp each: sea salt, pepper, cinnamon, cumin and garlic powder

an extra sprinkle of salt and cinnamon

cooking spray

Pre-heat oven to 400˚. Cut an acorn squash in half and scoop out the seeds (save them for roasting!).

Sprinkle a little sea salt and cinnamon over top of the squash.

Spray a square baking pan with cooking spray and place the two acorn squash halves face down.

Bake uncovered for about 30 minutes (it should be soft).

While the squash is baking, put the water and quinoa in a pot over high heat. Once it’s boiling, reduce heat to a simmer and continue to cook until all liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat.

Dice the shallot, onion, carrot and yellow squash and roast in the oven for about 5 minutes. (I used my favorite appliance- the convection toaster oven).

Add the roasted vegetables to the quinoa, along with all of the spices. Chop the mushroom, walnuts and cranberries into small pieces and add to the quinoa mixture. Stir until all ingredients are mixed together well.

Take the squash out of the oven and place the quinoa mixture into the empty cavities. It might overflow, but just keep piling it in.

 Place back in the oven under the broiler for about 4 minutes, or until the quinoa mixture has a nice crunchy crust over the top.

Dinner is served:

Isn’t it pretty?

The acorn squash is like buttah. And you can even eat the skin!

I’ve only ever made this before using frozen cranberries, but I didn’t have any on hand. The dried cranberries were okay, but maybe a little too sweet. I think a pinch of nutmeg might need to be added next time too, just to further get into the autumn flavor. It would also be good with some pumpkin beer (though I stole a few sips of Greg’s Sam Adams Octoberfest, which was a great compliment!). And the walnuts… ahhh. They might just be the star of the dish.

Oh, and don’t forget about the roasted acorn squash seeds:

Now I’m happily full of acorn squash goodness.

Time to get ready for bed and prepare for my early wake-up call in the morning!


11 Comments on “Stuffing it with quinoa”

  1. Hey Lauren, I just found your blog too, love it! this recipe looks really good, I totally starred at the acorn squash at the farmers market this weekend wondering what I could create, must be a Lauren thing, thanks for the idea!

  2. I have recently become obsessed with quinoa so this sounds unbelievably amazing to me! Love the slight sweet hint in it too with the cinnamon and cranberries.

    • Lauren says:

      It IS amazing- the crunchy quinoa will be a whole new obsession for you! But- I really would suggest frozen cranberries over dried. They were just a bit too sweet (and I have a major sweet tooth!)

  3. Your recipe looks great! I’ve tried to get myself to like quinoa because I know it’s so healthy for me, but I’m just not a big fan. I don’t really care for any type of rice/grain. What’s your favorite way to prepare quinoa?

    • Lauren says:

      Oh man- try this recipe. Then you will be a fan of quinoa! I LOVE it! I still haven’t made it for breakfast yet, but am planning on trying that soon (just like you would prepare oatmeal).

  4. Yum! This definitely caught my attention, as I am this moment stuffing my FACE with quinoa and lentils. Quinoa should be added to everything, in my opinion! And I’m so glad it’s squash season now. Everybody’s blogging squash recipes…I’ve gotta get to the store!

    • Lauren says:

      I agree- quinoa should be in everything! I need some good lentil recipes. I always love when I get them braised at a restaurant, but haven’t done much but make burgers or “meat”balls with them at home.

  5. This looks delicious! And I love that you don’t have to peel the acorn squash. I might have problems with peeling foods…

  6. akhappenings says:

    I neeeeed to make this! I’ve only ever had acorn squash once before and it wasn’t all that make-your-skirt-fly worthy, but I bought one this week because I am convinced that this year is the year that I WILL learn to love fall food. I’m off to the store to acquire the missing ingredients!

  7. […] 58. Acorn Squash and Quinoa (Serves 2) Recipe and Photo Credit: […]

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