Recipe Feature! Southwestern Stuffed Acorn Squash

It’s finally Friday! With all this amazing weather we are having in Tampa, I can’t wait to spend the weekend outdoors. Fall is my favorite time of the year in Florida because we get those occasional days where it’s great to break out the fire pit, make s’mores, and just enjoy each other’s company. I’m very close with my family, so nothing’s better than spending a night outdoors with them. Plus, Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and I couldn’t be happier…it’s my favorite holiday 🙂

Since it is getting a little cooler outside, I decided to share one of my favorite winter squash recipes: Southwestern Stuffed Acorn Squash. I love stuffing acorn squash because #1: it tastes amazing, #2: it’s super easy, and most importantly #3: it’s an edible bowl! After roasting it in the oven, the skin gets soft enough that you can gobble it up if you want to…I do 🙂 Besides this, acorn squash is a great source of complex carbohydrates, fiber, vitamin A, B vitamins, potassium, and the list goes on and on. It also helps that they’re in season right now, so you can find them on sale at local grocery stores.

Now, I know it might sound a little weird adding a Mexican flair to squash, but I promise it is delicious. The delicate sweetness contrasts the traditional Mexican flavors ever so slightly. Also, acorn squash has a slight nutty taste, which adds a lot of depth to the Mexican ingredients. If that doesn’t convince you, there’s cheese 🙂 Trust me my friends!

I hope you all enjoy this recipe and be sure to leave a comment below telling me your thoughts on it!

Southwestern Stuffed Acorn Squash

Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 3 acorn squash, (1 pound each)
  • 5 ounces bulk turkey sausage
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • ½ medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 cups chopped cherry tomatoes
  • 1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Several dashes hot red pepper sauce, to taste
  • 1 cup shredded Swiss cheese

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Lightly coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray.
  2. Cut squash in half horizontally. Scoop out and discard seeds. Place the squash cut-side down on the prepared baking sheet. Bake until tender, about 45 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, lightly coat a large skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium heat. Add sausage and cook, stirring and breaking up with a wooden spoon, until lightly browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Add onion and bell pepper; cook, stirring often, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, chili powder and cumin; cook for 30 seconds. Stir in tomatoes, beans, salt and hot sauce, scraping up any browned bits. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer until the tomatoes are broken down, 10 to 12 minutes.
  4. When the squash are tender, reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Fill the squash halves with the turkey mixture. Top with cheese. Place on the baking sheet and bake until the filling is heated through and the cheese is melted, 8 to 10 minutes.

Nutrition Facts:

  • Per 1/2 squash with stuffing: 251 calories; 7 g fat (4 g sat); 8 g fiber; 36 g carbohydrates; 14 g protein; 29 mg cholesterol; 9 g sugars; 0 g added sugars 478 mg sodium; 1,046 mg potassium
  • Vitamin C (78% daily value), Vitamin A (42% dv), Calcium (24% dv), Folate (20% dv)

http://www.eatingwell.com/recipe/249499/southwestern-stuffed-acorn-squash/

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