Taste

The Easiest Way To Peel And Cube Butternut Squash

Thanks to your microwave.
10/11/2016 06:00am ET

Butternut squash is one of the highlights of fall. It makes the creamiest of soups, tastes great roasted and served in salads and gives pasta a wholesome feel. The only problem is that peeling the sucker makes none of that feel worth it; the task of getting beneath the tough skin can be so challenging it makes us think we might actually hate fall and all that it brings.

Sure, pre-cut squash is available at some grocery stores, but let’s be honest, the stuff is terrible. Dried out, it doesn’t even resemble the orange-fleshed gourd we adore. There’s just no way around it ― if you want the butternut, you have to peel it.

BUT, before you lunge at it with a peeler, there’s something you should know: if you microwave it for a few minutes first, it’ll be infinitely easier to peel. Trust us, this is not a step to skip.

This is what you need to do:

  • First, poke it all over with a fork. The holes created from the tines of the fork will allow steam to escape to ensure the gourd doesn’t explode in your microwave.
  • Second, slice off the top and bottom.
  • Third, plate it and microwave for three and a half to five minutes ― depending on the size.
  • Fourth, let the squash cool and delight in how easily the peel comes off with a vegetable peeler.
  • Fifth, cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds.
  • Sixth, cut it into cubes and cook as desired. It’s that easy!

Watch the video above to see how it’s done. And then, here are some ideas for what to do with your newly peeled squash. (FYI, some of the recipes let you skip the peeling step altogether.)

1
Spicy Green Chile Turkey, Butternut Squash And Crispy Sage Enchiladas
Half Baked Harvest
2
Roasted Butternut Squash With Brown Sugar Bacon
The Clever Carrot
3
Black Bean Butternut Sliders With Chipotle Ketchup
How Sweet It Is
4
Cranberry, Butternut And Brussels Sprout Brie Skillet Nachos
Half Baked Harvest
5
Polenta Crostini With Butternut Squash, Ricotta And Sage
Edible Perspective
6
Roasted Butternut With Black Garlic and Miso
Feasting From Home
7
Thai Curried Butternut Squash Soup
Cookie + Kate
8
Spiced Almond Pancakes With Candied Butternut Squash
Half Baked Harvest
9
Butternut Squash Tikka Masala
Feasting at Home
Get the Butternut Squash Tikka Masala recipe from Feasting at Home
10
Butternut Sage Scones
Food52
Get the Butternut Sage Scones recipe from mrslarkin from Food52
11
Butternut Tabbouleh
Cookie + Kate
Get the Butternut Tabbouleh recipe from Cookie + Kate
12
Roasted Butternut Tikka Masala
Feasting From Home
Get the Roasted Butternut Tikka Masala recipe from Feasting From Home
13
Easy Butternut Squash Shells
How Sweet It Is
Get the Easy Butternut Squash Shells recipe from How Sweet It Is
14
Miso Roasted Butternut Squash
Foodie Crush
Get the Miso Roasted Butternut Squash recipe from Foodie Crush
15
Butternut Squash Stuffed Mushrooms With Goat Cheese And Balsamic Glaze
The Clever Carrot
16
Creamy Butternut Squash Linguine With Fried Sage
Cookie + Kate
17
Simple Caramelized Butternut Squash And Kale Florentine Lasagna
Half Baked Harvest
18
Curried Butternut Squash, Brocoli, Cheddar And Goat Cheese Soup
Half Baked Harvest
19
Butternut Squash Skillet Lasagna
How Sweet It Is
Get the Butternut Squash Skillet Lasagna recipe from How Sweet It Is
20
Spiced Butternut Squash Cupcakes With Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
Gimme Some Oven
21
Butternut Squash, Brussels Sprout, And Bread Stuffing With Apples
Food52
22
ABC Kitchen’s Butternut Squash On Toast
Food52
Get ABC Kitchen’s Butternut Squash On Toast recipe from Kenzi Wilbur from Food52
23
Kale Salad With Butternut Squash, Chickpeas And Tahini Dressing
Foodie Crush
24
Cappellacci di Zucca (Butternut Squash Cappellacci)
Food52
25
Winter Salad Of Roasted Golden Beets And Butternut Squash
Verses from my Kitchen
26
Artusi’s Butternut Squash Pie (Torta di Zucca Gialla)
Food52
27
Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
Naturally Ella
Get the Roasted Butternut Squash Soup recipe from Naturally Ella
28
Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Pulled Pork Tacos
The Law Student's Wife
Get the Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Pulled Pork Tacos recipe from The Law Student's Wife
29
Parmesan Sage Crusted Butternut Squash Galette
How Sweet It Is
30
Butternut Squash Carbonara With Fried Sage Leaves
bell'allimento
31
Kale And Ricotta Stuffed Shells With Butternut Squash Sauce
Completely Delicous
32
Spicy Goat Cheese And Butternut Squash Triangles
Adventures In Cooking
33
Maple Roasted Butternut Squash Freekeh Salad With Kale
The Law Student's Wife
34
Roasted Butternut Squash And Turkey Chili
Foodie Crush
35
Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese Ravioli With Browned Butter
Half Baked Harvest