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Air Fryer Stuffed Acorn Squash: Easy & Healthy Recipe

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Air Fryer Stuffed Acorn Squash

Who wouldn’t want to try making air fryer stuffed acorn squash? It’s very easy to prepare; just fill the squash with your favorite stuffing, set your air fryer to 350°F, and cook for about 30 minutes.

I’m very happy to share this stuffed acorn squash recipe, a delightful twist on a classic dish. Utilizing an air fryer for this recipe not only simplifies the cooking process but also helps in retaining the nutritious benefits of acorn squash. Perfect for anyone looking for a vegan air fryer recipe, this dish serves as a healthy air fryer meal that combines taste with wholesome ingredients.

What You Need to Know About Acorn Squash

Acorn squash, a winter squash with a distinctive ribbed exterior and sweet, nutty flavor, is a nutritional powerhouse. It’s low in calories but high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. During the fall and winter months, acorn squash is at its peak, making it a great choice for seasonal meals.

Stuffed Acorn Squash Air Fryer

Below is a nutrition facts table for the air fryer stuffed acorn squash, providing detailed information per serving:

Nutrition Facts

Servings Per Recipe: 4

Calories: 180 kcal

NutritionPer Serving% Daily Value*
Total Fat1g
Saturated Fat0g
Cholesterol0mg
Sodium300mg
Total Carbohydrate41g
Dietary Fiber6g
Sugars9g
Protein4g
Vitamin A10%
Vitamin C35%
Calcium6%
Iron8%

*% Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Essential Ingredients

For this recipe, the ingredients are split between the squash itself and the stuffing, offering alternatives for different dietary needs such as vegan or gluten-free options.

For the Squash:

  • 2 medium acorn squashes, halved and seeds removed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

And for the Stuffing:

  • 1 cup quinoa (use rice or gluten-free bread crumbs for a gluten-free option)
  • 2 cups vegetable broth (instead of water for more flavor)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup diced bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans (omit for nut-free diets)
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Vegan Alternatives:

  • Substitute any dairy or animal products with plant-based versions, such as vegan cheese to sprinkle on top if desired.

Essential Equipment

The primary tool for this recipe is, of course, the air fryer. It simplifies the cooking process and ensures the squash is cooked to perfection with a delightful texture. Essential tools are:

  • A sharp knife for cutting and cleaning the squash.
  • A spoon for scooping out the seeds from the acorn squash.
  • A mixing bowl to prepare the stuffing.
  • Measuring cups and spoons for accurate ingredient portions.

These kitchen tools help in preparing the ingredients properly and ensure everything fits into the air fryer comfortably for cooking.

How to Make Air Fryer Stuffed Acorn Squash

Preparing the Squash

Start by cutting the acorn squash in half from stem to end. Scoop out the seeds and stringy bits with a spoon.

Cutting acorn squash in half on wooden cutting board

Brush the inside of each squash half with olive oil. Sprinkle salt and freshly ground black pepper evenly over each half.

Seasoned acorn squash with olive oil, salt, and pepper

Making the Stuffing

Cook 1 cup of quinoa in 2 cups of vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed.

Quinoa cooking in pot with vegetable broth

While the quinoa cooks, heat a teaspoon of oil in a skillet. Add chopped onions and garlic, sautéing until translucent.

Add diced bell peppers, dried cranberries, chopped pecans, thyme, and sage to the skillet. Cook for another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Sautéing onions, garlic, and bell peppers for squash stuffing

Combine the sautéed vegetables with the cooked quinoa. Mix well, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Combining and Cooking

Spoon the stuffing mixture generously into the hollowed centers of the acorn squash halves.

Stuffed acorn squash with quinoa and vegetable mix

Place the stuffed squash in the air fryer basket. Set the air fryer to 350°F and cook for 25-30 minutes, or until the squash is tender and the top is slightly crispy.

Check halfway through cooking and if the tops are browning too quickly, cover loosely with foil.

Essential Note: For the best texture, ensure the squash is not overcrowded in the air fryer. This allows the hot air to circulate freely, ensuring even cooking. If your air fryer is small, cook the squash in batches to maintain optimal air flow.

Tips and Tricks for Perfect Air Fryer Stuffed Acorn Squash

  • Preheat the Air Fryer: Always preheat your air fryer for about 3 to 5 minutes before cooking. This helps the squash cook evenly and achieve a desirable texture.
  • Don’t Overcrowd: Make sure not to overcrowd the air fryer basket. Space the squash halves well apart to allow for good air circulation, which is key to getting them evenly cooked.
  • Foil is Your Friend: If you notice the top of the squash is getting too brown, loosely cover it with aluminum foil. This prevents over-browning while still allowing the squash to cook through.
  • Seasoning Adjustments: Taste your stuffing before filling the squash to adjust the seasoning. Remember, you can always add more spices, but you can’t take them out.

Stuffed Acorn Squash Serving and Presentation Suggestions

  • Plating: Serve each half of the stuffed acorn squash as a main course, or cut each half into two for a side dish. The vibrant colors of the stuffing and the golden edges of the squash make it visually appealing.
  • Side Dishes: Pair the stuffed acorn squash with a simple green salad or steamed green beans to add freshness and balance to your meal. For a heartier pairing, consider a side of roasted potatoes or a wild rice blend.
  • Garnishing: A drizzle of balsamic glaze or a sprinkle of fresh herbs (like parsley or cilantro) can enhance the flavors and improve the presentation. A dollop of Greek yogurt or sour cream can also add a creamy texture and a tangy flavor contrast.
Stuffed Acorn Squash Serving

These suggestions should help your stuffed acorn squash from a simple meal to a delightful dining experience, ensuring both taste and presentation are accounted for.

Air Fryer Acorn Squash Storage and Reheating Instructions

Proper storage and reheating are crucial to maintaining the quality of your air fryer stuffed acorn squash. Here’s how to ensure your leftovers remain tasty:

Storage Instructions:

  1. Cool Completely: Allow the stuffed acorn squash to cool to room temperature before storing. This prevents condensation inside the container, which could make the squash soggy.
  2. Refrigerate: Place the cooled squash in an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
  3. Freeze for Longer Storage: If you need to store the squash for a longer period, wrap each half tightly in plastic wrap followed by aluminum foil. Freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

Reheating Instructions:

  1. Reheat in the Air Fryer: Preheat your air fryer to 350°F. Place the squash halves in the air fryer basket and heat for 5-10 minutes, or until heated through. This method helps to maintain the crispiness of the outer skin.
  2. Oven Reheating: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Place the squash on a baking sheet and cover loosely with aluminum foil to prevent drying out. Heat for 15-20 minutes, or until completely warm.

Following these storage and reheating guidelines will help ensure that your stuffed acorn squash remains as delicious as when first prepared, preserving both texture and flavor.

FAQs about Air Fryer Stuffed Acorn Squash

Final Thoughts

This air fryer stuffed acorn squash recipe is not only a testament to how versatile and delightful easy air fryer vegetables can be, but it also emphasizes the health benefits of a healthy stuffed acorn squash meal.

The simplicity of the air fryer process coupled with the nutritious punch of acorn squash makes this dish a must-try.

I would like you to experiment with different stuffing’s, perhaps try incorporating different grains, proteins, or vegetables to tailor it to your taste preferences.

Each variation not only adds excitement to your meals but also enhances your culinary experience.

More Healthy Air Fryer Vegetable Recipe, You’ll Love

See all in at KitGiz for Air Fryer recipes.

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Air Fryer Stuffed Acorn Squash

Air Fryer Stuffed Acorn Squash

Who wouldn’t want to try making air fryer stuffed acorn squash? It’s very easy to prepare; just fill the squash with your favorite stuffing, set your air fryer to 350°F, and cook for about 30 minutes.

  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x

Ingredients

Scale

For the Squash:

  • 2 medium acorn squashes, halved and seeds removed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

And for the Stuffing:

  • 1 cup quinoa (use rice or gluten-free bread crumbs for a gluten-free option)
  • 2 cups vegetable broth (instead of water for more flavor)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup diced bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans (omit for nut-free diets)
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

1. Start by cutting the acorn squash in half from stem to end. Scoop out the seeds and stringy bits with a spoon.

Cutting acorn squash in half on wooden cutting board

2. Brush the inside of each squash half with olive oil. Sprinkle salt and freshly ground black pepper evenly over each half.

Seasoned acorn squash with olive oil, salt, and pepper

3. Cook 1 cup of quinoa in 2 cups of vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed.

Quinoa cooking in pot with vegetable broth

4. While the quinoa cooks, heat a teaspoon of oil in a skillet. Add chopped onions and garlic, sautéing until translucent.

5. Add diced bell peppers, dried cranberries, chopped pecans, thyme, and sage to the skillet. Cook for another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Sautéing onions, garlic, and bell peppers for squash stuffing

6. Combine the sautéed vegetables with the cooked quinoa. Mix well, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

7. Spoon the stuffing mixture generously into the hollowed centers of the acorn squash halves.

Stuffed acorn squash with quinoa and vegetable mix

8. Place the stuffed squash in the air fryer basket. Set the air fryer to 350°F and cook for 25-30 minutes, or until the squash is tender and the top is slightly crispy.

9. Check halfway through cooking and if the tops are browning too quickly, cover loosely with foil.

Notes

For the best texture, ensure the squash is not overcrowded in the air fryer. This allows the hot air to circulate freely, ensuring even cooking. If your air fryer is small, cook the squash in batches to maintain optimal air flow.

  • Author: Suborna Tanchangya
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Air Frying
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 half squash
  • Calories: 180 per serving
  • Sugar: 9g
  • Sodium: 300mg
  • Fat: 1g
  • Saturated Fat: 0g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 1g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 41g
  • Fiber: 6g
  • Protein: 4g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

Keywords: air fryer stuffed acorn squash

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