Like most people with functioning taste buds, I love fall foods. I have a giant Pinterest board full of recipes I want to try using fall and winter vegetables, and this year I’m signing up for a fall/winter CSA for the first time, so I’ll get a giant supply of fall foods like potatoes, leeks and winter squash! I especially love winter squash because it can store for a long time, as long as you keep it in a cool and dark place. No need to take up room in the fridge or feel pressure to eat it before it goes bad!
When you do have time to cook, there are lots of delicious ways to eat winter squash. Here is a fun and easy recipe with butternut squash, the most ubiquitous of the winter squashes.

I made it with quinoa, but that is definitely not a necessary ingredient. You could also replace the quinoa with barley, wheat berries, maybe even rice. Some sort of grain to hold it all together usually makes me happy, but it tastes good without it as well!

Recipe: Quinoa with Butternut Squash, Cranberries & Walnuts
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Inspired by: Gluten-free Goddess

  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 butternut squash, any size, peeled and cubed
  • 1 cup frozen cranberries (fresh is also a good option, but sometimes harder to find)
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 t chopped or pureed ginger
  • 2 t cumin
  • 2 t cinnamon
  • 1 t maple syrup
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • any sauteed greens you like (I usually add kale, sauteed in olive oil)
  • 1 can black beans, drained
Start by cooking the quinoa. Add 1 cup quinoa to 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer for 15-20 minutes. Keep an eye on the quinoa, as you can turn off the burner as soon as the water has been mostly absorbed.
Preheat the oven to 375.
In a large bowl, stir together the cubed squash and all remaining ingredients except the greens and black beans. Spread this out on a flat baking sheet and put in the oven for 15-20 minutes, or until you can poke the squash with a fork and it slides in easily.
Put the squash mixture back into a bowl, and add the cooked quinoa, black beans, and sauteed greens (optional). Add olive oil and salt to taste. I sometimes sneak in some extra maple syrup to make it a bit sweeter too. 🙂 Serve hot or refrigerate for later!
Happy fall!