We all love butternut squash for its versatility and amazing flavor- it can be used in roasted dishes, soups and casseroles.
But when you have a whole squash to work with, what are some of the best sides that will really bring out the sweetness of this beloved vegetable?
The good news is there are many options – from grains and proteins to vegetables and greens!
Here we’ve rounded up 10 of our favorite accompaniments to any butternut squash dish – each one guaranteed to complement the star ingredient perfectly.
Get ready for your taste buds to do a happy dance; get set… let’s dive into all that awaits you on the menu!
What to Serve with Butternut Squash? 10 BEST Options
1. Beef Stew
Beef stew is a wintertime classic that is hearty, filling, and oh-so-comforting.
The best beef stews are packed with chunks of tender beef, loads of veggies, and a rich, flavorful gravy.
And while beef stew might seem like a dish that’s tough to screw up, there are actually a few things you can do to take your stew from good to great.
First, let’s talk about taste and texture.
When it comes to beef stew, you want the beef to be nice and tender.
That means choosing a cut of beef that’s meant for slow cooking, like chuck roast or brisket.
For the veggies, we recommend using a mix of potatoes (for creaminess), carrots (for sweetness), and celery (for a bit of crunch).
As for the gravy, it should be thick and rich without being too heavy.
A simple combination of beef broth, red wine, and tomato paste will do the trick.
Now let’s talk about how to elevate the dish.
One way to do this is by browning the beef before adding it to the stew pot.
This will give the beef more flavor and prevent it from turning gray during cooking.
Another way to add more flavor is by deglazing the pan with red wine after browning the beef.
This will help to create a deeper, more complex flavor in your gravy.
Finally, don’t forget to season your stew generously with salt and pepper.
This will help bring out all the flavors in the dish.
2. Macaroni and Cheese
There are few comfort foods more classic than macaroni and cheese.
This dish is the perfect combination of creamy, cheesy goodness with starchy pasta.
And while it may be tempting to just go for the boxed stuff, making homemade mac and cheese is not as difficult as you might think.
Plus, it tastes so much better.
When it comes to the cheese, you really can’t go wrong.
Sharp cheddar is always a good choice, but feel free to mix it up and use whatever type of cheese you like best.
As for the pasta, elbow macaroni is the most popular choice, but again, you can use any type of small pasta shape that you prefer.
One way to elevate this dish is to add in some extra vegetables.
Sautéed spinach or kale make a great addition, or you could even stir in some roasted butternut squash for an extra dose of flavor and nutrients.
No matter how you make it, macaroni and cheese is always a winner.
3. Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Looking for a new side dish to add to your repertoire? Why not give roasted Brussels sprouts a try? These little green veggies are packed with flavor and texture, and they’re surprisingly easy to make.
When roasted properly, Brussels sprouts should be slightly browned and crisp on the outside while remaining soft and tender on the inside.
The key to getting this perfect balance is all in the cooking method.
First, slice the Brussels sprouts in half (or quarters if they’re particularly large).
Then, toss them in a bit of olive oil and sea salt.
Roast in a preheated oven until they’re fork-tender and slightly browned around the edges.
There are endless ways to elevate this simple side dish.
For example, you could toss the roasted Brussels sprouts with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese or crumbled bacon bits.
Or, try drizzling them with a balsamic glaze or maple syrup for a touch of sweetness.
No matter how you serve them, roasted Brussels sprouts are sure to be a hit at your next dinner party.
4. Kale Salad
Kale salad is a great way to get your greens in, but it can sometimes be a little bit bland.
That’s why we’ve put together this guide on how to make the perfect kale salad.
First of all, you need to make sure that you’re using the right type of kale.
We recommend using lacinato kale, also known as dinosaur kale, for this dish.
It has a slightly sweeter taste than other types of kale and a softer texture, making it easier to eat.
To make the salad more interesting, we suggest adding some roasted butternut squash.
The sweetness of the squash pairs perfectly with the bitterness of the kale.
You could also add some crumbled goat cheese or roasted nuts for an extra bit of flavor and texture.
Finally, don’t forget to dress your salad.
A simple vinaigrette made with olive oil, lemon juice, and salt and pepper will do the trick.
Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, you could try making a creamy tahini dressing.
Whichever dressing you choose, make sure to give your salad a good toss so that everything is evenly coated.
5. Roasted Sweet Potatoes
There’s nothing quite like roasted sweet potatoes.
The taste is sweet and savory, and the texture is soft and fluffy.
They’re the perfect side dish to any meal, and they’re also a great way to elevate a dish from ordinary to extraordinary.
When it comes to roasted sweet potatoes, there are a few things to keep in mind.
First, make sure that you select sweet potatoes that are of similar size so that they cook evenly.
Second, cut them into even slices so that they roast evenly.
Third, be sure to drizzle them with olive oil or melted butter before roasting so that they get nice and crispy on the outside.
Here are some tips for making the perfect roasted sweet potatoes:
- Cut the sweet potatoes into even slices, about 1/2-inch thick.
- Drizzle with olive oil or melted butter.
- Season with salt, pepper, and any other desired spices.
- Roast at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 20-25 minutes, or until tender and cooked through.
6. Cornbread Stuffing
When it comes to fall comfort food, nothing quite hits the spot like a big plate of stuffing.
And while there are tons of different ways to make stuffing, one of our absolute favorites is cornbread stuffing.
This dish is packed with flavor, has the perfect mix of textures, and is relatively easy to make.
Plus, it’s pretty darn versatile – you can dress it up or down depending on your mood or what you’re serving it with.
As far as taste and texture go, cornbread stuffing hits all the right notes.
It’s slightly sweet from the cornbread, savory from the herbs and veggies, and has a great crispy crust on top.
The inside is soft and pillowy, making it the perfect base for all those delicious flavors.
And if you want to take things up a notch (which we always do), there are a few easy ways to do so.
First, try adding some chopped bacon or sausage to the mix.
This will give the dish an extra boost of flavor and make it even more hearty.
You could also add in some shredded cheese, diced apple, or dried cranberries.
Really, the sky’s the limit when it comes to cornbread stuffing – so get creative.
Finally, don’t forget about the presentation.
Cornbread stuffing looks just as good as it tastes, so be sure to transfer it to a pretty serving dish before bringing it to the table.
A little garnish never hurt anyone either – we like to top ours with fresh parsley or sage leaves.
Trust us, your guests will be impressed.
7. Vegan Wild Rice Stuffing
This vegan wild rice stuffing is the perfect holiday dish.
It’s packed with flavor and has a great texture.
The best part is that it’s really easy to make.
Here are some tips on how to make it even better:
- Add some chopped nuts for a crunchy texture.
- Sautee the vegetables before adding them to the stuffing. This will give them a nice flavor.
- Add some dried fruit for sweetness.
- Use vegetable broth instead of water for more flavor.
- Add some fresh herbs for a pop of flavor.
8. Lentil Soup
Lentil soup is a delicious and hearty dish that is perfect for wintertime.
This soup is packed with nutrients and has a rich, earthy flavor that is sure to please.
The texture of lentil soup can be somewhat thick and creamy, or thin and brothy depending on how it is prepared.
There are many ways to elevate this simple dish and make it even more flavorful.
One way to do this is to add in some aromatic vegetables such as onions, garlic, and carrots.
Another way to add flavor is by using different types of lentils.
For example, red lentils will give the soup a slightly sweet flavor, while green lentils will add a bit of bitterness.
You can also experiment with different herbs and spices to find the perfect combination for your taste buds.
If you are looking for a hearty and satisfying meal, look no further than Lentil Soup.
This dish is easy to prepare and can be made in large batches so that you have leftovers for the week.
9. Green Bean Casserole
Green Bean Casserole is a classic dish that has been around for decades.
It’s simple to make and can be easily tailored to your own taste.
The dish is typically made with green beans, cream of mushroom soup, and fried onions.
Some people also like to add cheese or bacon to their casserole.
The dish is usually pretty bland in terms of taste and texture.
The green beans are soft and mushy, and the cream of mushroom soup can be quite thick and heavy.
However, there are ways to elevate the dish and make it more interesting.
One way to do this is to use fresh green beans instead of canned.
This will give the casserole a more earthy flavor and a slight crunch.
You can also roast the green beans before adding them to the casserole.
This will add a bit of depth and smokiness to the dish.
Finally, using a different type of mushroom soup can also change up the flavor.
Consider using a creamy porcini mushroom soup or even a vegan version made with cashew cream.
10. Chicken and Rice
When it comes to comfort food, chicken and rice is a classic dish that always hits the spot.
This dish is simple to make and can be easily customized to your liking.
The best part about chicken and rice is that it can be made in one pot, making for an easy cleanup.
The key to making a great chicken and rice dish is all in the seasoning.
Be sure to use plenty of salt, pepper, and other herbs and spices to give the dish flavor.
Another tip is to brown the chicken before adding it to the pot – this will give the dish a deeper flavor.
If you’re looking for ways to elevate your chicken and rice dish, try adding some chopped vegetables like carrots, celery, or onions.
You could also add some shredded cheese on top for an extra cheesy flavor.
Whatever you do, be sure to enjoy this classic comfort food.
So, these are the 10 best options of what to serve with butternut squash.
I hope this blog has helped you with what to serve butternut squash dishes.
If you have any questions or suggestions, leave them in the comments below.
And don’t forget to share this post with your friends and family.
Carrie is a food writer and editor with more than 15 years of experience. She has worked for some of the biggest names in the food industry, including Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, and Martha Stewart Living.
As the Editor in Chief of IntroChicago.com, Carrie oversees all of the content on the site. She also manages the team of contributing writers and editors, who help to create delicious recipes, helpful tips, and informative articles that you’ll find on the site.
A native of the Chicago area, Carrie is passionate about all things food. She loves trying new restaurants and experimenting with new recipes in her kitchen. She’s also a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, so she knows a thing or two about food!