Preparation: 50 mins

Cooking: 1 hour 10 mins

Serves: 4




1 large butternut squash, washed, halved lengthwise, then de-seeded

For the stuffing:
150g cooked quinoa (cooked as per packet instructions, with ½ vegetable stock cube for extra flavour)
1 tsp rapeseed oil
1 shallot, finely diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
50g kale, washed and roughly chopped
Pinch of sea salt and cracked black pepper
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp wholegrain mustard

For the granola crust:
10g pecans
20g chestnuts
15g dried cranberries
30g oats
2 sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves only
2 tbsp rapeseed oil

To serve:
Roast potatoes and vegetables
Cranberry sauce
Vegetarian/vegan gravy


1. Preheat your oven to 220°C/gas mark 7.

2. Line a flat baking tray with non-stick baking parchment. Place the squash cut-side down onto the tray and bake for 35 minutes. (This is to make sure it is soft enough to cut the hasselback slices.)

3. While your squash is roasting, make the stuffing. Heat the oil gently on a medium heat in a frying pan. Add the diced shallot, crushed garlic and a pinch of sea salt and cracked black pepper. Fry gently, stirring regularly until the shallot starts to soften.

4. Add the kale and continue to cook for 5 to 7 minutes until the kale is wilted. Add the nutritional yeast, quinoa and mustard and stir well. Set aside until needed.

5. After 35 minutes, remove the squash from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Using a sharp knife, cut partially through the squash width ways, along the whole length, at half-inch intervals. Don’t cut all the way through each slice – leave about half an inch still uncut to keep the squash in one piece. Your aim is create large enough slits to stuff, which will open out slightly during cooking. (To be sure you don’t cut all of the way through the squash, lay a wooden spoon next to the squash so your knife will touch the spoon rather than the tray. This should give you about the right depth of slice.)

6. Using a teaspoon or small knife, push a little of your stuffing into each cut, gently easing the slices apart to create a gap. Carry on in this way until you have filled all of the cuts. (Don’t worry if the stuffing drops through the space where the seeds were, it will still cook through.) Use all of the stuffing if possible. Depending on the size of your squash, the filling may spill out of the side and the top, but this creates a lovely overstuffed appearance. Return the squash to the oven and roast for a further 10 minutes.

7. Next make the granola. Roughly chop the pecans, chestnuts and cranberries. Combine all of the ingredients, except the oil, in a small bowl and set aside until needed.

8. After 10 minutes, remove the squash from the oven. Using a pastry bush, generously oil the squash, paying particular attention to any exposed skin. Sprinkle your granola over the squash. You can cover the squash entirely or crust a wide line along the top of the squash.

9. Return to the oven for a further 12 to 15 minutes. When cooked, the squash should be soft to the touch and the granola should be crisp. Any exposed kale may blacken slightly, which gives a great charcoal flavour.

10. Carefully transfer the squash to a long serving platter or wooden board. Serve as your centrepiece with roast potatoes, vegetables, plenty of cranberry sauce and gravy.


© The Vegetarian Society