Sausage Stuffed Butternut Squash with Spinach, Pecans, and Cranberries
Sausage Stuffed Butternut Squash is a Fall comfort food that features Italian sausage, pecans, cranberries, and spinach. This flavourful family-friendly dinner is packed with veggies, fibre, and protein, and is gluten-free. It’s simple enough to make on a weeknight and perfect to serve as a side dish or main course for the holidays!
Roasted Butternut Squash
- 2 butternut squash medium or large
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt or more
- black pepper freshly ground
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onion small, diced
- 14 oz Italian sausage spicy, crumbled
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 4 oz spinach fresh
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ½ cup pecans chopped
How to roast butternut squash
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- Prepare the butternut squash. Slice each one in half lengthwise. Keep fingers away from the knife to avoid injury. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and fleshy strands tangled with the seeds.
- Place butternut squash cut sides up on a baking sheet. Drizzle the cut sides of the butternut squash halves with olive oil and rub the oil into the squash. Season generously with salt and pepper.
- Turn the squash halves over, and place it cut sides down on a baking sheet. Tip: you can line the baking sheet with parchment paper for easy clean-up.
- Roast in the preheated oven at 400 F for 30 or 40 minutes.
Make sausage filling
- Make the sausage filling while the squash is being roasted in the oven.
- In a large skillet, heat olive oil, add diced onion, and cook it on medium-high heat for about 2 minutes until cooked and a bit charred.
- Add crumbled sausage, minced garlic, and Italian seasoning and cook for about 5 minutes or more on medium heat until the sausage is completely cooked through.
- Add fresh spinach and cook for another 5 minutes on medium heat until the spinach wilts.
- Add dried cranberries and chopped pecans and mix everything.
- Season with salt and pepper. Probably not necessary since the sausage is already usually salty (unless you use sweet sausage which I do not recommend).
- By this time, you have roasted the butternut squash for 30 or 40 minutes. Remove them from the oven and turn the cooked squash halves cut sides up.
- Let it cool slightly. Using a spoon, scoop out the flesh leaving about a 1-inch border along the sides. (For reference, I provide the step-by-step photos for this step above the recipe card).
- Reheat the sausage mixture in the same skillet in which you made it to warm it up.
- Divide the sausage filling among the 4 halves and stuff the squash until the mixture is leveled or a little bit higher.
- Top with freshly ground black pepper and fresh thyme.