Autumn is indisputably the season of the squash, but we’ll admit that there are some varieties we gravitate toward more than others. Pumpkin is the obvious icon of fall, while butternut squash trails behind as a close second—but acorn squash has plenty of potential that’s not tapped quite as often as it should be. Sure, it makes for a fun centerpiece, but there are so many ways to incorporate the vegetable into your meals. There’s no excuse for leaving that farmers’ market buy sitting on your countertop unused all season long. Try one of these nine recipes—you might just become an acorn squash convert. 

For Breakfast

Acorn Squash Breakfast Bowls With Yogurt

How long until it’s ready: 1 hour Why you’ll love it: These squash bowls will inspire you to opt for a brunch-themed Friendsgiving. All you have to do is cut, oil, and pop them in the oven—then once everyone arrives they can customize their bowls with yogurt and all kinds of toppings.

Streuseled Acorn Squash Muffins

How long until it’s ready: About 1 hour Why you’ll love it: When you’re all pumpkin-spiced out, switch things up with these simple muffins. Their streusel topping puts them between a crumb cake and a breakfast pastry. What’s not to love?

For Dinner

One Pan Tempeh Butternut Squash Bake

How long until it’s ready: About 1 hour and 15 minutes Why you’ll love it: Tamari, ginger, and garlic make the perfect umami flavoring for a filling mix of tempeh and squash. Consider this the ideal fall meal prep recipe.

Maple Roasted Squash Salad

How long until it’s ready: About 45 minutes Why you’ll love it: You might not consider a salad to be the most exciting dinner, but when it’s topped with warm squash, jewel-like pomegranate seeds, and a buttermilk–goat cheese dressing, it’s crave-worthy. 

Spicy Roasted Squash With Feta and Herbs

How long until it’s ready: About 1 hour Why you’ll love it: Surprise: Chili garlic sauce is the seasoning this slightly sweet squash has been missing. A mix of oregano, basil, and cilantro lends this recipe a bright twist, while tangy feta takes it above and beyond. This is the remix your Thanksgiving table needs.

Stuffed Squash With Broccoli Rabe and Quinoa

How long until it’s ready: About 1 hour Why you’ll love it: This is probably the most typical of acorn squash recipes, but currants, Marcona almonds, and fresh sage make this version a little more elevated than what you might expect. Cut the vegetable into quarters instead of halves for a fancy-feeling side dish.

For Dessert

Vanilla Bourbon Baked Balsamic Acorn Squash

How long until it’s ready: 1 hour Why you’ll love it: Drench this vegetable in butter and sugar and of course it will be a satisfying dessert. A few pinches of nutmeg take it to the next level. Best of all, prep is pretty hands off—the hardest part is waiting for the squash to cool down reasonably enough to eat it.

Maple Roasted Acorn Squash With Apples and Pecans

How long until it’s ready: 45 minutes Why you’ll love it: If you love pumpkin pie but wish it had a bit more texture, this is your way easier alternative. When squash is roasted with sugar, maple syrup, and apple slices, it’s sweet enough to work as a dessert—and simple enough to justify making it multiple times a season.

Honey Butter Roasted Acorn Squash With Burrata and Pomegranate

How long until it’s ready: 40 minutes Why you’ll love it: For those whose taste preferences err on the side of savory, cheese is always the best post-dinner course. Pair buttery golden brown acorn squash with bursting burrata and drizzle on some honey—you’ll have an impressive end to your meal that everyone can agree on.

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