From the outside, an acorn squash doesn't look like much.
Its thick outer skin is somewhat intimidating, and the whole thing appears to be more decorative than edible. But my, my, my, this little gourd is justifiably an unsung hero of the squash world. It can be baked, nuked, sautéed and steamed into delectable fall dishes good enough for an entree. Acorn squash can be pureed into a soup or stuffed with filling and can be used as a bowl itself, too. Once cooked, its fiber-rich orangey flesh will satisfy the hungry.
Oh and how it pairs -- so simply -- with a pat of butter and a dash of freshly ground pepper. You'll pass this vegetable near its butternut and spaghetti squash relatives, and the next time you do, pick a couple up to make one of these 24 recipes below.