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Butternut squash is, by far, my favorite winter squash because it is a versatile ingredient. You can use it to make soups, salads, fried rice, cookies, and even mac and cheese! It is also quite easy to handle, compared to other winter squash with tough outer skin. All you need to do is trim the ends of the squash and peel off the skin with a vegetable peeler. If you are roasting them whole, you don’t even need to peel the skin at all.
HOW TO PREPARE PEEL & CUT BUTTERNUT SQUASH
BUTTERNUT SQUASH CURRY
This vegan butternut squash curry is the perfect weeknight dinner for the winter. It’s filling, flavorful, and comes together very quickly. I used curry powder, ground coriander, and red pepper flakes to flavor the dish, and you can find all of them in the spices section at Nugget Markets. I usually buy them from the bulk spices.
I also used fire-roasted crushed tomatoes to give acid and brightness to the butternut squash curry. The sweetness of the squash balances out the acidity of the tomatoes nicely. To finish off the dish, I tossed in several large handfuls of baby spinach. Honestly, I can never say no to more vegetables in my meals.
I know this vegan curry is a winner when my meat-loving husband won’t stop eating it. Try it sometime soon!
If you want to add protein to this butternut squash curry, I recommend adding chickpeas or pan-fried tofu. If you are not vegan, try pan-fried paneer, shredded chicken, or shrimp.
I served the curry with long-grain brown rice that I cooked in my Instant Pot. You can also serve it with white jasmine rice, quinoa, or millet. Honestly, any cooked grain (or even naan) that you have on hand will go well with the curry.
Vegan Butternut Squash Curry with Spinach
- 2 tablespoons virgin or unrefined coconut oil, see note 1
- 1/2 medium yellow onion, diced into 1/4-inch pieces
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons minced ginger
- 2 teaspoons yellow curry powder, mild spice
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, see headnote about spice
- 4 cups (about 18 ounces) diced butternut squash (1/2-inch dice)
- 1 (14-ounce) can fire-roasted crushed tomatoes
- 2/3 cup full-fat coconut milk, see note 2
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 to 5 cups baby spinach
- chopped roasted peanuts for topping, optional
- 4 to 5 cups cooked brown rice, see note 3
- Heat a pot over medium-high heat. Add the coconut oil, and then add the onions. Cook the onions for about 2 minutes, until they start to soften. Add the garlic and ginger and cook another minute.
- Next, add the curry powder, coriander, and red pepper flakes, and stir to coat the onions with the spices. Add the diced butternut squash, crushed tomatoes, coconut milk, water, and salt. Cover the pot with the lid and bring everything to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to medium and let the squash simmer for 15 minutes. Remember to stir the pot every 5 minutes or so to prevent the curry from burning on the bottom. After 15 minutes, pierce a piece of butternut squash with a fork to see if the squash is tender. If the squash is still very firm, keep cooking the curry for another 3 to 5 minutes.
- Turn off the heat. Add the baby spinach and stir the curry until the spinach starts to wilt. The spinach should start wilting in about a minute.
- Serve the curry in bowls with a side of brown rice or your favorite grain. Top with chopped peanuts, if desired.
- Virgin (or unrefined) coconut oil imparts the most flavor to a dish, so try to use that if possible.
- If you want more sauce, you the curry to be creamier, you can add another 1/3 cup of coconut milk.
- I cooked my brown rice in the Instant Pot. I added 2 cups of long-grain brown rice with 2 1/4 cups water to the the Instant Pot. Then, I cooked it on high for 23 minutes. Let the pressure naturally release before serving the rice. I set the rice to cook before I began cooking the curry so that the rice and curry finish cooking at about the same time.
LOOKING FOR MORE BUTTERNUT SQUASH RECIPES?
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Nugget Markets, where you can find all the ingredients used in this recipe. Visit their website for more information or follow them on Facebook or Twitter! Click here find a location near you.