One of my favorite traditional dishes on Thanksgiving is stuffing. With the crispy and nutty texture of organic wheat bread cubes, browned chicken sausage, and honeycrisp apples, it boasts classic flavors that we crave for leftovers. It’s always the first side dish to run out and we make two pans of stuffing solely to have enough leftovers. How do you create a delicious stuffing option without bread? We made a smart substitution by ditching the bread but adding quinoa. The container for this stuffing mixture? A roasted acorn squash.
Keep reading for the full recipe after the jump!
Stuffed Acorn Squash
- 3 acorn squash
- 3 T organic extra virgin olive oil
- freshly ground salt and pepper
- 1 lb chicken breakfast sausage
- 1 C quinoa, cooked according to package instructions
- 3 stalks of celery, cleaned and diced
- 1/2 yellow onion, minced
- 1 honeycrisp apple, diced
- 1/2 C dried cranberries
- 1/2 C walnuts, toasted and chopped
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary, chopped
- 1 sprig fresh thyme, chopped
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Rinse off squash and pat dry with a kitchen towel. Using a sharp knife, cut squash in half. With a large spoon scoop out seeds and discard. With a pastry brush, apply olive oil on the flesh of the acorn squash. Season liberally with fresh ground salt and pepper. Place in oven and cook for 45 minutes or until fork tender.
Meanwhile, begin to make the stuffing. Cook quinoa according to package instructions. In a large skillet, brown the chicken sausage over medium high heat. Once chicken is cooked, remove and place to the side. Add diced apple, onion, and celery to the pan. Cook until translucent. Add fresh herbs, cranberries, and walnuts. Once quinoa is cooked and all excess liquid is removed, add quinoa and browned sausage to the pan and bring to temperature.
Spoon stuffing mixture in squash. Return to oven and cook for 10 minutes. Enjoy our favorite dish from this Friendsgiving!