It’s the ultimate fall squash. 

October 04, 2016

If you haven’t heard of kabocha, now’s the time to get to know the tasty Japanese squash. It has a fluffy texture similar to chestnut and a sweet flavor that tastes like sweet potato mixed with pumpkin. Plus, it’s packed with beta carotene, iron and vitamin C. Here, nine excellent ways to cook with kabocha squash this season.

1. Gluten-Free Winter Squash Gnocchi

These delicious gnocchi have a subtly sweet squash flavor with hints of sage.

2. Curried Kabocha Squash Soup

This velvety, spiced squash soup has layers of flavor, thanks to red chiles, tangy lemon juice and apple cider vinegar.

3. Kabocha Squash Salad

Bitter greens are the perfect foil for the sweet, caramelized kabocha squash in this hearty, festive salad from Jessica Koslow of Sqirl in Los Angeles. It's an interesting, tasty alternative to your normal salad that brings all the fall flavors you're craving. Make it on a weeknight and then pack your leftovers for lunch.

Marcus Nilsson

Bitter greens are the perfect foil for the sweet, caramelized kabocha squash in this hearty, festive salad.

4. Kabocha Squash Congee

Simple, light and satisfying, tender kabocha squash is a great finish off to a classic congee rice and ginger porridge. We would devour this comforting bowl of seasonal congee for breakfast, lunch or dinner on any day our insides need some warming up.

Simple, light and satisfying, tender kabocha squash is a perfect vegetable to finish off a classic congee rice and ginger porridge.

5. Chunky Curried Kabocha Squash Dip

Sweet roasted winter squash makes a fantastic base for a healthy dip. Here, the F&W Test Kitchen gives it an Indian spin by adding curry, as well as fresh jalapeño and lime juice. All you need is a sturdy, thick tortilla chip and you've got the start of a very good party.

Con Poulos

Sweet roasted winter squash makes a fantastic base for a healthy dip. Adding curry, fresh jalapeno and lime juice gives it a fun Indian spin.

6. Roasted Kabocha

Cookbook author Melissa Clark likes sweetening up slices of roasted winter squash, so she roasts them with maple syrup, olive oil, fresh ginger and thyme. It’s a simple idea, but the combination of flavors highlights the squash in a delicious way. Another bonus: The recipe can easily be made ahead and served at room temperature. If you have a silicone baking mat, use it here to make cleanup a cinch.

John Kernick

Cookbook author Melissa Clark likes giving slices of roasted winter squash a little wake-up, so she roasts them with maple syrup, olive oil, fresh ginger and thyme. It's a simple idea, but the combination of flavors highlights the squash in the best possible way. 

7. Squash Fritters and Fried Sage

Chef Richard Betts became an expert at frying squash and sage leaves when he lived in Tuscany 20 years ago, using a batter with just two ingredients: flour and club soda.

8. Squash Stuffed with Quinoa and Wild Mushrooms

For a  hearty, vegetarian main-course, chef Kevin Kathman stuffs maple-glazed roasted kabocha squash with both oyster and shiitake mushrooms.

9. Roasted Squash with Crispy Bulgur Crumbs

© Christina Holmes

F&W's Kay Chun tops sweet roasted winter squash with crispy pan-fried bulgur seasoned with coriander seeds.