Rice and Pecan-Stuffed Squash

While you’re planning your cruelty-free Thanksgiving feast, let vegan Nava Atlas, author of The Vegan Holiday Kitchen (Sterling Publishing, 2011), lend a hand. The VegKitchen.com founder shares this elegant vegan rendition of holiday stuffing. You can find the stuffing recipe and many others in The Vegan Holiday Kitchen, a must-have for every vegan kitchen.

While you’re planning your cruelty-free Thanksgiving feast, let vegan Nava Atlas, author of The Vegan Holiday Kitchen (Sterling Publishing, 2011), lend a hand. The VegKitchen.com founder shares this elegant vegan rendition of holiday stuffing. You can find the stuffing recipe and many others in The Vegan Holiday Kitchen, a must-have for every vegan kitchen.

Rice and Pecan-Stuffed Squash

Atlas says, “Squash and pecans make for a memorable duo when combined in this Creole-inspired recipe. The savory nut, bread, and rice stuffing, contrasted with the smooth sweetness of the butternut squash, makes a perfect holiday main or side dish.”

8 servings

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium golden acorn or delicata squashes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 3/4 to 1 cup soft whole grain bread crumbs (see Cook’s Note)
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 2/3 cup fresh orange juice, or as needed
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • Sprigs of fresh thyme for garnish

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Cut the squash in half lengthwise and place in a baking dish, flesh side down. Bake until tender.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a small skillet. Add the onion and sauté until golden brown.
  4. Combine the sautéed onion in a mixing bowl with the bread crumbs, cooked rice, and pecans.
  5. When the squash is done and cool enough to handle, discard the seeds, then scoop out the pulp, leaving a sturdy, 1/2-inch shell all around. Chop the pulp, and add it to the rice and pecan mixture.
  6. Add the orange juice, more or less as needed to moisten the mixture, followed by the syrup and dried herbs. Season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg, mix thoroughly, and stuff the squash shells. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, then serve.
  7. For butternut squashes, serve each squash half as a hearty main dish; or cut each half across to serve 8 as a smaller portion. For golden acorn or delicata, serve each half as a main dish portion.

Cook’s Note: Make fresh bread crumbs by whirling torn slices of whole grain bread in a food processor fitted with the metal blade. For a gluten-free stuffing, use gluten-free bread to make the crumbs.

More tasty vegan holiday dishes!

 

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