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For nights when you want your dinner to give you a hug: Sausage Stuffed Acorn Squash. This recipe is unabashedly cozy, low carb, and packed with protein and vegetables.

stuffed acorn squash with sausage and cheese on a plate

Why You’ll Love This Sausage Stuffed Acorn Squash Recipe

  • Filling Without Being Heavy. As with this Stuffed Butternut Squash and Spaghetti Squash Lasagna, stuffed squash recipes are hearty and satisfying, but this sausage stuffed acorn squash isn’t the kind of recipe that will leave you feeling uncomfortably stuffed or weighed down.
  • Cozy Flavor. Golden acorn squash is baked until caramelized and tender, stuffed with everything delicious (apples! sausage! mushrooms!), and finished with Parmesan cheese, which is nutty and becomes bubbly and crisp while the squash bakes.
  • Goes From Main Dish to Side Dish. In addition to being a stellar weeknight main, this stuffed acorn squash with sausage is special enough to serve as an extra hearty side at a holiday meal. (For a more standard sized acorn squash side dish, try these brown sugar and pecan Baked Acorn Squash Slices.)
  • Excellent Leftovers. Stuffed acorn squash is still delicious the next day—and even the day after that! If you’re looking for a dish you can make on the weekend and enjoy for dinner later in the week, this is it.
the best stuffed acorn squash recipe with sausage and filling

5 Star Review

“This dish is excellent! I have made it 4 times now and it’s a huge success every time!”

— Kim —

How to Make Stuffed Acorn Squash

The Ingredients

  • Italian Sausage. Italian chicken or turkey sausage is one of my favorite ingredients to add loads of flavor to a recipe, while keeping it lean (my Italian Sausage Skillet, Sausage and Peppers, and Sausage and Rice Casserole are a few other favorites). You can use sweet or spicy Italian sausage, depending upon your and your family’s preference. We use spicy. I like its counterpoint to the sweetness of the squash.
  • Apples. The combination of apple and sausage is so tasty with acorn squash. The apples become nice and tender. I like to leave the peels on; you can’t taste them, and they provide a few extra nutrients. (For another favorite savory apple recipe, check out Pork Chops With Apples.)
  • Mushrooms. Chopped finely, the mushrooms nearly disappear into the filling, leaving you only with an extra savory flavor. If you are cooking for non-mushroom fans, you can omit them for a still delicious, simple recipe for apple sausage stuffed acorn squash.
  • Onion + Garlic. To up the savory factor and complexity.
  • Sage and/or Thyme. These two classic fresh herbs make the squash taste special. Don’t use dried. Fresh will give you the results with which you will be the most happy.
  • Nutmeg and Allspice. Both are classic pairings with acorn squash. They make this stuffed acorn squash recipe taste like home.
  • Parmesan. For a nutty, extra Italian finish.

The Directions

scooping out the inside of an acorn squash to roast and stuff
  1. Prep the Squash. Cut the squash, and scoop out the seeds.
perfectly roasted acorns squash on a baking dish
  1. Bake. Lay the halves cut-sides up on a baking sheet. Bake for 40 minutes at 400 degrees F, until tender. Set aside.
browning sausage in skillet for sausage stuffed squash
  1. Start the Filling. Brown the sausage in a large skillet.
stuffed acorn squash filling on a stovetop
  1. Add the Next Few Ingredients. Stir in the vegetables, apple, salt, and spices. Cook until the vegetables are tender and the sausage is cooked through.
filling for healthy stuffed acorn squash recipe
  1. Finish the Filling. Scoop out the squash flesh, leaving about 1/4-inch on all sides to act as a “wall”. Add the removed squash to the sausage mixture. Stir in the herbs and cheese.
stuffed acorn squash on a baking sheet
  1. Bake. Mound the filling inside of the squash halves. Sprinkle extra cheese over the top, and bake at 375 degrees F for 15 minutes until hot and melty. Serve hot, and ENJOY!

Recipe Variations

  • Add a Grain. Stir 1 1/2 cups of a cooked whole grain into the filling prior to stuffing the squash. Wild rice stuffed acorn squash or stuffed squash with quinoa, or farro would be wonderful.
  • Sausage Stuffed Butternut Squash. Follow this same recipe, but bake and stuff butternut squash halves instead. Note: you will need to adjust the baking time for the butternut squash halves, as it will need a bit longer (45 to 55 minutes) than the acorn squash.
  • Paleo Sausage Stuffed Acorn Squash. Omit the cheese; ensure you are using a paleo-friendly sausage.
  • Stuffed Acorn Squash with Sausage, Apples, and Cranberries. Prior to stuffing the squash, stir 1/4 cup dried cranberries into the filling.
  • Vegetarian Stuffed Acorn Squash. Swap the sausage for a 15-ounce can of rinsed and drained white beans, such as cannellini or white kidney beans. Stir the beans into the filling right before stuffing the squash. Vegan sausage can also be used here.
roasted and stuffed acorn squash recipe

Storage Tips

  • To Store. Place in an airtight storage container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • To Reheat. Place stuffed acorn squash in a baking dish with a small amount of water in the bottom. Tent with foil, then rewarm in the oven at 350 degrees F for about 15 minutes, or until hot.
  • To Freeze. Let the squash cool to room temperature. Place one half of stuffed squash into a quart size freezer bag and remove as much air as possible. Put in the fridge until well chilled, and then transfer to the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • To Reheat From Frozen. To reheat, remove a frozen squash half, and place it a in covered casserole dish. Bake at 350 degrees for and 45 to 50 minutes (from frozen). Add additional cheese as desired in the last 10 minutes of baking. You can also reheat the squash half in the microwave on high for 5 to 7 minutes.
    • If you prefer, you can let the squash half thaw overnight in the refrigerator and rewarm according to the “To Reheat” directions above.

Meal Prep Tip

You can roast the acorn squash halves or make the filling up to two days in advance to get a head start. Or make both and stuff the acorn squash too! Cover the stuffed squash and refrigerate for up to two days before baking.

Leftover Ideas

My other favorite way to eat leftovers is to scoop out the filling, mix it with cooked rice and sautéed greens, then sprinkle it with extra cheese for an acorn squash “bowl” effect.

the best stuffed acorn squash recipe with sausage

What to Serve with Stuffed Acorn Squash

Recipe Tips and Tricks

  • Know How to Cut Acorn Squash. The easiest way to cut acorn squash is from stem to end. Lay your squash on its side, and use a sharp chef’s knife to carefully make a cut on one side between two of the ridges. Keep pressure on the knife until you feel it reach the hollow center. If you feel your knife getting stuck, pull it out and start your cut again. Continue cutting on the same line, repositioning and flipping your squash over as needed, until you’ve cut all the way through around the bottom of the squash on both sides.
  • Cut on the Dotted Line. I like to score the flesh first to make sure I can safely cut all the way through the squash. To score, use the sharp tip to make a series of incisions in the shape of a dotted line, then cut all the way through the dotted as directed above.
  • Pull the Squash Apart. Unless you’re using a very sharp chef’s knife, do not cut through the stem. Instead, lay your knife down, and grab the bottom end of the two halves, pulling them apart. The stem will stay on only one half, and you can leave it on for the roasting process.

Stuffed Acorn Squash

4.85 from 188 votes
This cozy, hearty Stuffed Acorn Squash with sausage and mushrooms is a fantastic blend of sweet and savory flavors. Easy and delicious!

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 55 minutes
Total: 1 hour 10 minutes

Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients
  

For The Squash:

  • 2 acorn squash halved through from the stem to the base and seeds removed
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil

For The Filling:

  • 1 pound Italian chicken or turkey sausage about 2 links, casings removed, sweet or spicy (we use spicy)
  • 8 ounces cremini baby bella mushrooms finely chopped
  • 1 small yellow onion chopped
  • 1 medium sweet-crisp apple cored and finely diced (peel off or on; I left it on)
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage thyme, or a mix (plus additional for serving)
  • ½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese divided

Instructions
 

  • Bake the squash: Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 400°F. With a sharp, sturdy chef’s knife, carefully cut the squash in half from stem to base. Scoop out and discard the stringy core and seeds. Arrange the halves cut-sides up on a rimmed baking sheet. Brush each half with 1 teaspoon olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place in the oven and bake for 40 minutes, until the edges begin to wrinkle and the flesh is fork-tender. Set aside. Reduce the oven temperature to 375°F.
  • While the squash bakes, prepare the filling: Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sausage. Brown the meat, breaking it apart into small pieces for 3 minutes.
  • Add the mushrooms, onion, apple, salt, pepper, nutmeg, allspice, and minced garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, until the sausage is cooked through, the vegetables and apple are softened, have given up liquid, and the liquid has cooked off, about 8 additional minutes.
  • When the squash is cool enough to handle, scoop out its flesh, leaving a wall all the way around that is about 1/4-inch thick. Add the scooped squash to the pan with the sausage. Add the herbs and ¼ cup Parmesan. Stir to combine. Taste and adjust salt and pepper as desired.
  • Mound the filling inside of the hollowed squash halves. Sprinkle the remaining Parmesan over the top. Place the pan in the oven and bake until the cheese is melted and the filling is nice and hot, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle with additional fresh herbs as desired. Serve hot.

Notes

  • TO STORE: Place in an airtight storage container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • TO REHEAT: Place stuffed acorn squash in a baking dish with a small amount of water in the bottom. Rewarm in the oven at 350 degrees F for about 15 minutes, or until hot.
  • TO FREEZE: Place one half of cooked stuffed squash into a quart size freezer bag and remove as much air as possible. Put in the fridge until well chilled, and then transfer to the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • TO REHEAT FROM FROZEN: To reheat, remove a frozen squash half, and place it in a covered casserole dish. Bake at 350 degrees for and 45 to 50 minutes (from frozen). Add additional cheese as desired in the last 10 minutes of baking. You can also reheat the squash half in the microwave on high for 5 to 7 minutes.
    • If you prefer, you can let the squash half thaw overnight in the refrigerator and rewarm according to the “To Reheat” directions above.

Nutrition

Serving: 1(of 4)Calories: 421kcalCarbohydrates: 40gProtein: 26gFat: 20gSaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 71mgPotassium: 1330mgFiber: 6gSugar: 11gVitamin A: 1087IUVitamin C: 62mgCalcium: 263mgIron: 13mg

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at wellplated.com and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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253 Comments

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  1. My husband and I really like your recipe. We didn’t change anything to see how we liked it. He did say maybe add some more fresh mushrooms into it. I also thought I might cut up the acorn squash and then cook it like a side dish.5 stars

  2. I usually made stuffed acorn squash with Apples walnuts and Cranberries with a filling more like baked apples. This was the first savory acorn squash I made , hubby and I both agreed it was way more satisfying and flavorful than the sweet version. This will be my go to recipe for stuffed acorn squash.5 stars

  3. I’ve made three times over the last 2 weeks – a test, a real meal, and an “let’s do this again cuz it’s so good and we’ve got the stuff.” I topped it with a bit of cheddar cheese. Family agreed this is a keeper!5 stars

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