Stuffed Acorn Squash with White Beans and Kale

Some women impulse buy shoes.
I impulse buy squash.
Thirty-pound, toddler-sized sacks of squash to be exact. Basement priced at $8, this monster pack of butternuts, acorns, and carnivals was impossible to resist. I was giddy with my find—until I had to haul it home from the farmers market. Heavy load perched uncomfortably on my hip, I quietly vowed that any hypothetical children of mine will be responsible for walking on their own little feet, thank you very much.
Maybe I should bring a stroller next time.
Our tiny 550 square foot apartment is also not well equipped for storing an extra 30 pounds of squash. We don’t even have a linen closet, let alone a place to stash a winter’s worth of hardy eats.
Solution: our Santa-bag of squash is now hiding behind the easy chair. Now, I can focus on more important things.
Such as all the yummy ways I can use up our free world’s supply of squash!
To me, the empty center of an acorn squash represents a hole of delicious possibility. Acorn squash begs to be stuffed with all kinds of goodies, and this WHITE BEAN AND CHARD variation is a weeknight winner.
Filled with Mediterranean flavors, this seasonal dish takes less than a half hour to prepare, is outrageously budget-friendly, and is so filling, even Ben didn’t miss the meat. A breadcrumb and Parmesan topping adds extra flavor and texture, and the rainbow Swiss chard is a gorgeous autumn super food.
But what you really need to know is that WHITE BEAN AND CHARD STUFFED ACORN SQUASH is positively scrumptious.
Just ask Ben: WHITE BEAN AND CHARD STUFFED ACORN SQUASH was his first taste of acorn squash, ever. Though initially incredulous, Ben gave the dish his seal of approval and even took leftovers for lunch the next day.
With my newly purchased mother lode of squash, I expect this WHITE BEAN AND CHARD STUFFED ACORN SQUASH recipe will be one of many squash-centric installments to come this fall and winter. Fortunately, squash is an incredibly versatile food family, and as you’ll see, the yummy uses abound.
Here’s one of my favorites: ROASTED BUTTERNUT SQUASH PIZZA. It’s a slice of autumn awesomeness.
What are YOUR favorite ways to use winter squash? Please share them here! I have a few extras (i.e. 30 pounds worth) on my hands just waiting for your ideas!

White Bean and Chard Stuffed Acorn Squash

  • 4 acorn squash, (halved with seeds removed*)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil (plus 2 tablespoons, divided)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (divided)
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, (divided)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 8 cups chopped chard leaves, (about 1 large bunch)
  • 1 can white beans ((15 ounces) rinsed)
  • 1/4 cup chopped black olives
  • 1/3 cup breadcrumbs ((whole wheat if possible**))
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Cut a small slice off the bottom of each squash half so that it rests flat. Brush the insides with 1 tsp. oil and sprinkle with 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Place in a microwave-safe dish. Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high until the squash is fork-tender, about 12 minutes (alternatively, you can bake at 400°F for approximately 1 hour).
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 T. oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until starting to brown, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 1 minute. Stir in water, tomato paste, and the remaining 1/4 tsp. each salt and pepper.
  3. Stir in chard, cover, and cook until tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in white beans and olives; cook until heated through, 1 to 2 minutes more. Remove from the heat.
  4. Position rack in center of oven. Preheat broiler.
  5. Combine breadcrumbs, Parmesan, and the remaining 1 T. oil in a bowl. Fill each squash half with about 1 c. of the chard mixture. Place in a baking pan or on a baking sheet. Sprinkle tops with breadcrumb mixture. Broil in the center of the oven until the breadcrumbs are browned, 1 to 2 minutes.