Roasted Butternut Squash stuffed with Corn, Zucchini, Parmesan, and Cream Cheese (seasoned with smoked paprika and chili powder) is a quick and easy main or side dish to make during the Fall and Winter seasons. This flavorful, family-friendly dinner is meatless, vegetarian, and gluten-free. Simple enough to make on a weeknight and perfect to serve as a side dish or main course for the holidays (Thanksgiving or Christmas)!
Stuffed butternut squash - meatless main or side dish
This Fall-inspired dinner is a well-balanced meatless meal featuring lots of veggies (butternut squash, zucchini, and corn) and protein (cream cheese and Parmesan). It makes a stunning presentation - a perfect side dish to share with family and friends for Thanksgiving and Christmas! How do you serve it? Slice each stuffed butternut squash half into 4 slices and serve it on a platter as a holiday side dish. It is also an excellent option for a simple weeknight dinner because it features accessible ingredients and is easy to make.
Why you'll love it
- Beautiful presentation. Stuffed butternut squash makes an effortless, fancy presentation. Impress your family and friends with this restaurant-quality meal made at home.
- Great recipe for Fall/Winter. The best time to make this dish is when the butternut squash is in season. Take advantage of the seasonal produce and make it in the Fall and Winter. It's also a great dish to serve on the holiday menu (Thanksgiving and Christmas).
- Butternut squash is rich in dietary fiber and is an excellent addition to your menu. This winter squash is a great source of vitamins A, B6, C, and E and several minerals, including magnesium, manganese, and potassium.
- Zucchini. I used 2 medium sliced zucchini, quartered. I seared it in a skillet on the stovetop before adding it to the roasted butternut squash halves.
- Corn. I boiled 4 ears of corn (corn on the cob) in a pot of boiling water for about 5 or 10 minutes. Then, when the corn was cooled, I sliced the corn kernels off the cob with a knife. You can also grill your corn or use canned corn. I used a total of 2 cups of cooked corn kernels.
- Cream cheese adds creaminess and great texture to the filling. Soften up the cream cheese by gently heating it in the microwave oven.
- Parmesan cheese - use shredded or grated parmesan. It's always best to shred or grate the cheese yourself!
- Seasonings. I used smoked paprika, chili powder, salt, and pepper.
- Fresh herbs. I garnished stuffed butternut squash with fresh rosemary and fresh thyme.
Substitutions and variations
- Winter squash. You can use spaghetti squash, butternut squash, or acorn squash. When using acorn squash, remember they are smaller and bake faster in the oven (about 30 minutes in the preheated oven at 400 F).
- Add prosciutto or cooked bacon. You can briefly crispy up the prosciutto in the preheated oven at 350 F for about 10 minutes.
- Cheese. Other cheeses I recommend (besides cream cheese and Parmesan) are shredded Mozzarella, Pecorino Romano, Gruyere, or Asiago cheese.
- Fresh herbs. You can use fresh basil, thyme, marjoram, or oregano.
Tips for Success
- Butternut squash can be notoriously hard to cut, and here is an easy solution you might not have thought of! Ask the Deli Department of your local grocery store to cut your butternut squash in half for you. They have sharp large knives and will happily do it for you.
- Use cooking time efficiently by preparing the corn and zucchini cheese filling while you roast the butternut squash in the oven.
How to serve it
- Serve corn and zucchini stuffed butternut squash in a deep, high-sided pasta bowl or on a large plate. Use a spoon to scoop out the cooked squash and the cheese mixture. Do not eat the hard outer shell.
- You can also slice each stuffed butternut squash half into 2, 4, or more slices and serve it on a large serving platter. Using a sharp knife to slice the squash will help keep the filling intact. Your family (or guests) can then use a serving spoon to transfer a smaller slice of stuffed squash onto their plate.
- Serve it unstuffed. Scoop the cooked butternut squash flesh out of the shells and mix with the corn, zucchini, and cheese filling. Serve it in a large serving bowl. You can serve it over a small portion of pasta if you like.
Storage and Reheating Tips
- Fridge. Refrigerate the leftover stuffed butternut squash in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
- Reheat in the oven. Reheat it in the preheated oven at 350 F for about 30 or 50 minutes or until heated through.
- Reheat in the microwave oven. You can also microwave the leftovers. For the best and fastest results, you can take the corn and zucchini cheese mixture out of the squash and reheat the cheese and veggie mixture and the squash separately. Then, stuff the cheese mixture back into the butternut squash.
Other stuffed butternut squash recipes you might like
- Feta, Spinach, and Bacon Stuffed Butternut Squash
- Stuffed Butternut Squash with Spinach, Bacon, and Cheese
- Sausage Stuffed Butternut Squash with Spinach, Pecans, and Cranberries
- Southwestern Ground Beef Stuffed Butternut Squash with Black Beans and Corn
- Meatless Butternut Squash Stuffed with Feta Cheese, Spinach, and Pine Nuts
Roasted Butternut Squash stuffed with Corn, Zucchini, and Cheese
How to roast butternut squash
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- Prepare the butternut squash. Slice each one in half lengthwise. Keep fingers away from the knife to avoid injury. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and fleshy strands tangled with the seeds.
- Place butternut squash cut sides up on a baking sheet. Drizzle the cut sides of butternut squashes with olive oil and rub the oil into the squash. Season generously with salt and pepper.
- Turn the squash over, and place it cut sides down on a baking sheet. Tip: line the baking sheet with parchment paper for easy clean-up.
- Roast in the preheated oven at 400 F for 40 minutes.
- Proceed with the rest of the recipe while the squash is in the oven.
Prepare the veggie mixture
- Heat an empty, large, high-sided cast-iron skillet over medium heat for 1 minute. Add olive oil and sliced zucchini. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for about 3 minutes on medium heat. Flip the veggies once.
- Add cooked corn kernels. Season with smoked paprika, chili powder, and salt. Mix everything well and cook together for 3 minutes. Remove from heat.
Make a cheese mixture
- Add cream cheese to a microwave-safe large-sized bowl. Soften cream cheese briefly in the microwave oven. Make sure the cheese does not melt, just softens.
- Add shredded Parmesan and half of the cooked zucchini and corn mixture to the same bowl with cheese. Mix everything well.
- Tip: Reserve the remaining half of the veggie mixture to arrange on top of the stuffed butternut squash.
How to stuff butternut squash
- By this time, you have baked the butternut squash for 30 or 40 minutes. Remove it from the oven and turn cooked squash halves cut sides up.
- Let it cool slightly.
- Scoop out the flesh using a spoon, leaving about a 1-inch border along the sides. (For reference, I provide the step-by-step photos, including for this step, below this recipe card).
- Add back the scooped-out squash into the larger cavities of the butternut squash.
- Divide the cheese mixture (with zucchini and corn mixed in) among the 4 halves and stuff the squash until the mixture is leveled.
- Top each stuffed butternut squash half with the remaining cooked zucchini and corn. Sprinkle with more smoked paprika and chili powder.
- Return stuffed butternut squash to the preheated oven and roast at 400 F for 10 or 15 more minutes until the cheese mixture melts.
- Remove the baked butternut squash from the oven.
- Sprinkle just a pinch of chili powder and/or smoked paprika on top. Add fresh herbs (rosemary and thyme). Serve.
- Slice each stuffed butternut squash half into 2, 4, or more slices and serve it on a large serving platter. Using a sharp knife to slice the squash will help keep the filling intact. Your family (or guests) can then use a serving spoon to transfer a smaller slice of stuffed squash onto their plate.
- This recipe makes 8 servings as a side dish. 4 stuffed butternut squash halves, each sliced in 2.
The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed. It should not be used as a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
How to roast butternut squash (step-by-step photos)
This is a quick overview with step-by-step photos. For a complete and detailed recipe, use the recipe card above.
1) Slice each butternut squash in half lengthwise. Keep fingers away from the knife to avoid injury. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and fleshy strands tangled with the seeds.
2) Drizzle the cut sides of butternut squashes with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
3) Roast the squash for 40 minutes in the preheated oven at 400 F. Turn the squash over, and place it cut sides down on a baking sheet. Tip: line the baking sheet with parchment paper for easy clean-up.
How to stuff roasted butternut squash (step-by-step photos)
When the butternut squash is done roasting, cut out small indentations in the cooked squash to prepare it for stuffing. Scoop out the flesh using a spoon, leaving about a 1-inch border along the sides. See photos for more clarity:
Add the scooped-out squash to the larger cavities of the roasted butternut squash. Stuff corn, zucchini, and cheese mixture into the squash. Reheat in the oven at 400 F for 15 minutes, if needed.