Wild Rice and Sausage Stuffed Acorn Squash

Here is another non-traditional thanksgiving side dish. In fact, this can be served not only as a side dish, but as a full meal! They are great leftover as well. This wild rice and sausage stuffed acorn squash is a mash up of all of your favorite fall flavors. Warm and inviting, your guests will love this stuffed squash.

Why you’ll love this harvest acorn squash

  • This wild rice and sausage stuffed acorn squash is full of so many delicious ingredients, all the flavors you would expect in a perfect fall dish.
  • It can be eaten as a side dish or a main course! I will make these in the fall and eat them leftover for lunch. They might even be better the next day.
  • Acorn squash is an excellent side for Thanksgiving. The beauty of the dish makes a statement on your holiday table!

Here’s what you’ll need to make it

  • Sheet Pan – For roasting your squash.
  • Knife – Make it a large, sharp knife for cutting your squash in half. Squash can be hard to cut, so a sharp knife will be a big help in this case.
  • Frying Pan – This is for browning your sausage. My favorite pans of all time are Hexclad. They usually have great deals around the holidays, and I highly recommend if you are looking for some great pans!
  • Spatula – Use your favorite spatula for browning your sausage.
  • Large Bowl – You can mix all the filling in a large bowl or just mix it in the frying pan after your sausage is done.
  • Sauce pan with lid – This is for making your wild rice. I used a medium sauce pan so the rice and broth is shallow.

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Ingredients & substitutions

  • Acorn squash – For the amount of filling we are making, 2 acorn squash should be enough to use it all.
  • Ground sausage – I prefer Jimmy Dean natural sausage. I think Jimmy Dean is the best, and they have all kinds of flavors. Their sage sausage would be an awesome addition to this recipe as well.
  • Baby spinach – Just to get those good veggies in.
  • Wild rice – I love Minnesota wild rice. The dark color makes it rich in nutrients and adds a nice, nutty flavor to the stuffing.
  • Vegetable broth – Cooking your rice in this makes it that much more flavorful.
  • Dried cranberries – This touch of sweet balances the dish perfectly. You can also substitute dried cherries if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Chopped pecans – Just a bit of crunch!
  • Stuffing mix – You can certainly forego this, but I like it as it gives the entire filling a little more body.
  • salt and pepper
  • olive oil

How to make this sausage stuffed squash

Step 1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Step 2. Cut squash in half and clean out the seeds with a spoon. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place face down on a parchment lined sheet pan. Bake for about 30-40 minutes, until the squash is tender.

Step 3. While the squash cooks, make the wild rice as directed. Bring 2 cups of vegetable broth and 1/2 cup rice to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer and cook, covered, for about 45 minutes or until the rice is tender. Drain any additional vegetable broth.

Step 4. Brown your ground sausage in a frying pan. When the sausage is almost done, add your spinach and let it wilt down into the sausage. Remove from heat and set aside.

Step 5. To the sausage mixture, add the dried cranberries, pecans and stuffing and mix until well combined.

Step 6. Once the squash is done, add the mixture to the inside of the squash. Cover with tinfoil and bake again for 5-10 minutes.

Step 7. Remove from oven and serve your wild rice and sausage stuffed acorn squash hot.

Acorn squash vs butternut squash

Can I sub acorn squash with butternut squash?

You can use any winter squash, including butternut, buttercup, Hubbard, sugar pumpkin, and acorn, interchangeably in recipes. So if you can’t find butternut squash, grab whatever you can.

What is the difference between acorn and butternut squash?

Buttercup squashes are deep green like acorn squashes and kabocha squashes, but they feature a belly-button-like indent at their base and less defined sectioning than acorn squashes. They have a much milder flavor than acorn or kabocha squashes, and a drier texture.

What is healthier acorn or butternut squash?

Butternut squash tastes sweeter and has a very smooth and buttery mouthfeel, while acorn squash is milder and has a denser, more fibrous texture. Nutritionally, acorn squash is higher in calories, carbohydrates and minerals, while butternut squash is higher in most vitamins, especially vitamin A.

More stuffed recipes:

More autumn squash recipe ideas:

Wild Rice and Sausage Stuffed Acorn Squash

Stuffed acorn squash is a beautiful side dish or a full meal!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 4 Servings
Calories 400 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 Sheet Pan
  • 1 Knife
  • 1 Frying Pan
  • 1 Spatula
  • 1 Large Bowl
  • 1 sauce pan with lid

Ingredients
  

  • 2 acorn squash
  • 1 lb ground sausage
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup wild rice
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup stuffing mix
  • salt and pepper
  • olive oil

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Cut squash in half and clean out the seeds with a spoon. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place face down on a parchment lined sheet pan. Bake for about 30-40 minutes, until the squash is tender.
  • While the squash cooks, make the wild rice as directed. Bring 2 cups of vegetable broth and 1/2 cup rice to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer and cook, covered, for about 45 minutes or until the rice is tender. Drain any additional vegetable broth.
  • Brown your ground sausage in a frying pan. When the sausage is almost done, add your spinach and let it wilt down into the sausage. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • To the sausage mixture, add the dried cranberries, pecans and stuffing and mix until well combined.
  • Once the squash is done, add the mixture to the inside of the squash. Cover with tinfoil and bake again for 5-10 minutes.
  • Serve!
Keyword acorn squash, sausage recipe, stuffed acorn squash, stuffed squash, thanksgiving ideas, thanksgiving recipe, wild rice

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