Sausage and Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash

The past few weeks have been a bit more crazy than usual because I’ve been working on a grant with my PI while still trying to squeeze in a healthy number of experiments. Our annual genetics department and lab ski retreats have also been thrown into the mix, and I’ve been training for my first 5K! Since all these activities haven’t much time left to experiment in the kitchen, I’ve been whipping up some of my favorite tried and true recipes instead.

This stuffed acorn squash dish was originally inspired by one of my very favorite bloggers, Joanne, whose blog, Eats Well with Others, is always entertaining and filled with mouth watering treats. Last fall she featured 12 weeks of winter squash recipes, which inspired me to stuff some squash of my own. This is a wonderful meal because the veggie, side, and main dish are all combined into one neat little container! I simply filled roasted acorn squash with quinoa, thyme, leeks, and turkey sausage, and then added in cranberries and goat cheese for a little tangy sweetness to balance out the savory flavors. I’ve also made it with ground turkey and pork sausage – you really can’t go wrong. This is truly an easy and tasty dish that never disappoints.

Also, thanks to everyone for your blogiversary wishes and for entering my giveaway! The lucky winners were numbers 12 and 96 – congrats to Sophie and Christine!

Sausage and Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash
Printable Recipe

Ingredients:
4 acorn squash, cut in half with seeds and pulp removed
1 1/2 cups quinoa
3 cups chicken stock
1/4 teaspoon ground thyme
1 teaspoon salt
1 leek, white and light green parts only, chopped
1 pound turkey sausage, casings removed
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup dried cranberries
4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375˚F. Place squash cut side down on a large cookie sheet sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Bake at 375˚F for 35 to 40 minutes or until tender.

Meanwhile, place quinoa and chicken stock in a stockpot over high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 10 to 15 minutes or until all water is absorbed. Stir in thyme and salt.

Place leeks and turkey sausage in a large nonstick skillet and heat over medium high heat for 8 to 10 minutes or until sausage is browned and leeks are tender. Add garlic and cook one additional minute.

Stir cooked quinoa, cranberries, and goat cheese in with browned sausage mixture. Pile quinoa and sausage mixture evenly into cooked squash. Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition: 392 calories, 9.7g fat, 6.6g fiber, 20.9g protein per serving
Cost: $1.74 per serving

36 Responses to Sausage and Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash

  1. Congrats to the winner, and isn’t Joanne the BEST read. Even if I am not fond of squash (sorry), I still enjoy the read…

    Good luck with your first 5K. My wife and I are going to enter one first weekend in April… But it is a walk/run, and this place is nothing but hills, so i see a lot of walking from us.

  2. Oh I love quinoa, lovely in salad, and also lovely to replace couscous. I love the way you serve this with acorn squash. Healthy and delicious!

  3. That squash is absolutely brimming with deliciousness! I am going to have to try this way of stuffing the squash…sausage, cranberries AND winter squash in one dish. I can’t really imagine anything better.

    Thanks so much for the sweet shout-out! Good luck with the grant-writing. I know that can be so time consuming and nerve wrecking.

  4. I admit I haven’t tried quinoa yet, but I do love squash in any form. And it’s very filling, so stuffing it as you did would be such a nice dinner.

  5. ski retreats? yes please!
    meanwhile, i love the components of this filling! hooray for quinoa and sausage, and the cranberries are awesome for color and a sweet zing. excellent. :)

  6. Acorn squash is my absolute favorite squash…and I love all of the different ways you can stuff it! I have not tried quinoa (need to get on this)! Hope you’re getting some rest in this weekend

  7. This looks fabulous! I love acorn squash, and I usually read your blog in my Google Reader so I do not see it, but I LOVE your new layout! Looks great!

  8. Ah, I remember Joanne’s 12 weeks of winter squash! I really enjoyed that. I’ve actually never tried an acorn squash before…but I still think kabocha is superior, tee hee. Though, if you served this to me, it would definitely be gone in a flash!

  9. I just made this tonight and it was DELICIOUS! The whole family loved it and I’m already looking forward to having leftovers. Thanks Kerstin!

  10. Oh, you’re totally fueling my quinoa obsession! This recipe has been bookmarked! Good luck with the 5K… At least the weather has been super nice :)

  11. Oh wow that looks delicious!
    I will definitely be trying that with no sausage and veggie broth instead! (I’m a vegetarian)
    Your blog is great by the way!

  12. Wow you have been busy! Grant writing time can be stressful for everyone in the lab! Best of luck to you training for the 5K!

    Such a beautiful meal! Love that all these great things can be packaged in an edible bowl :)

  13. Thanks everyone! I was making these once a week for awhile back in the fall and it was nice to enjoy them again! And I just ran the 5K, so a recap is coming soon :)

    Joanne – Thanks, we just submitted it today – yay!

    Erin – I’m so glad you all liked them!!

  14. This is a fantastic dish!!! I couldn’t find acorn squash so I used sweet potato squash and it was amazing :) Thanks for the recipe! I’m using it for a dinner party tomorrow night :)

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