This vegan stuffed acorn squash recipe is bursting with seasonal flavor. It features a wild rice, cranberry and walnut filling that includes plenty of herbs and spices.
It’s an easy recipe to make and perfect for your next vegan holiday meal. Impress vegans and non-vegans with this tasty and nutritious dish!
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Is Stuffed Squash Vegan?
Stuffed squash recipes aren’t typically vegan as their stuffing often contains some type of meat. Dairy products (often butter) and/ or meat-based broths are often used to cook the filling too.
You could certainly use vegan substitutes for any of these non-vegan stuffed squash recipes. However, you can also start with a recipe designed to taste amazing while already being vegan!
This recipe uses roasted acorn squash with a flavor-loaded wild rice filling. It’s a delicious way to prepare this classic autumn meal and enjoy squash while it’s in season!
Vegan Acorn Stuffed Squash Ingredients
Don’t be alarmed by the long ingredient list for this recipe! They’re mostly delicious herbs and spices that blend perfectly to create a flavor-packed wild rice stuffing. You can adjust the flavors based on your taste preferences or what you have available.
- Acorn squash: You’ll need 2 acorn squashes for this recipe to create 4 servings. Any squash or pumpkin that’s roughly the same size as an acorn squash can work. Cook times may vary for different types of squash.
- Olive oil: Use some olive oil for delicious flavor when roasting the squash and sautéing the stuffing vegetables. Any type of oil can work. You could also use a vegan butter substitute. Different oils or butter alternatives create unique flavors.
- Salt and pepper: Season your squash and stuffing with these classic flavor boosters!
- Wild rice: As this is a wild rice stuffed squash, you’ll need some type of wild rice. I use a wild rice blend, but you can use straight wild rice, red rice, brown rice or whatever type of rice you like. Quinoa would also work. Cook times vary between rice options so make sure to cook until the rice is softened.
- Vegetable broth: To add flavor while the rice cooks, I use vegetable broth. Select a low sodium or no salt added broth as this gives more control over your meal’s salt content. You can add extra salt to taste (but I find fully salted vegetable broth overwhelmingly salty).
- Celery, onion, carrots: Cook these tasty veggies into your stuffing for extra flavor, color and nutrition.
- Lentils: Some lentils are a great way to boost the protein content of your stuffing. You could use any type of cooked bean or legume!
- Herbamare: This is a sea salt and vegetable/ herb blend. It has a lovely flavor that works well in many savory recipes (I use it in most of my soups too)! If you don’t have this ingredient and don’t want to buy it, replace it with ¾ teaspoon salt and ¾ teaspoon herb blend of your choice. For this recipe, I’d use extra thyme and maybe some sage or rosemary!
- Dry cranberries: For seasonal flavor, dry cranberries are a tasty addition to the stuffing. They bring a brightness and some sweetness to the recipe.
- Walnuts: Add a tasty crunch to the squash filling with chopped walnuts. Any nut or seed can work, but walnuts and cranberries are a classic combo.
- Fresh parsley: Fresh parsley adds an amazing layer of flavor to this recipe. It brightens the other flavors which can be heavier. If not parsley, add any fresh herb you like!
- Garlic powder: This is one of the many dry spices I use for the stuffing. You can also mince fresh garlic; if you do, cook it with the other vegetables.
- Ground sage: Sage is a classic autumn flavor that works amazingly with squash and pumpkin recipes!
- Dry thyme: As with sage, thyme is an amazing fall-focused herb that adds earthiness to any recipe. You can also use fresh thyme if you have that available.
- Ground nutmeg: I love nutmeg in savory recipes, especially with squash or pumpkin. It adds an amazing flavor!
- Celery seed: This is optional, but I love the added flavor of using celery seed in this stuffing recipe.
How to Make Roasted and Stuffed Acorn Squash
This recipe is simple to make, just roast the squash and prepare some wild rice stuffing. Read the detailed directions below to see how it’s made!
Step 1: Roast Acorn Squash
Preheat the oven to 400 °F.
Start by washing the outside of your squashes. Then carefully cut them in half from top to bottom. I find this the hardest part of the recipe!
Once cut in half, scoop out the seedy insides of your squash. Use a fork to poke holes in the orange flesh of each squash half. Poke around the edges and through the center of the squash.
Place your poked squash halves onto a baking tray that’s lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Brush olive oil onto the orange parts of each squash, then sprinkle with salt and pepper to your taste.
Place in the preheated oven for 40-50 minutes, until all parts of the squash are soft. You can let them roast a bit longer if you want some browning. This adds delicious flavor to the squash!
Once cooked, remove from oven. They should be done roasting around the same time as you finish cooking the wild rice filling!
Step 2: Prepare Wild Rice Stuffing
While the squash roasts, prepare your wild rice stuffing.
There’s a fair amount of vegetable chopping to do before you cook. I like to finely chop all the vegetables, but you can cut them into any size or shape you like. The larger your vegetable pieces are, the crunchier they’ll be (unless you cook the filling for longer).
When you’ve chopped the vegetables, warm some olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion, celery and carrot, then cook for 3-4 minutes until they start to soften.
Add lentils and dry herbs and spices, including Herbamare, garlic powder, ground sage, dry thyme, ground nutmeg, celery seed, salt and pepper.
Toss the lentils and herbs/ spices with your softened vegetables, then add the wild rice and vegetable broth. Stir to combine and place a lid on your pan.
Cook over medium or medium-high heat until the rice fully softens and no liquid remains. This takes anywhere from 15-25 minutes, depending on the type of rice you use. You may need some extra liquid to fully cook the rice. Use extra splashes of vegetable broth or water if needed.
Once you’ve cooked the rice, remove the pan from heat and stir in cranberries, walnuts and chopped fresh parsley.
Taste the mixture and add extra salt and/or black pepper to taste if needed.
Step 3: Assemble and Serve
To serve, just add the wild rice stuffing to your roasted squash! Top with extra chopped parsley and/or walnuts if you like.
How to Create a Balanced Vegan Meal
I consider a balanced meal one that contains a good source of plant-based protein, carbohydrates, fats and lots of vegetables or fruits.
This recipe covers all those bases, although it’s lower in protein and fat while being higher in carbs.
The protein comes from lentils and walnuts, and to a lesser extent, the wild rice. The fats come from oil used to sauté the vegetables and the walnut.
While this recipe is higher in carbs, those carbs are all coming from very nutritious foods like squash, wild rice and lentils (mainly). These carb sources are also high in fiber and other nutrients which makes for a tasty and nutrient-packed meal.
Feel free to add some extra protein to the recipe if you like. Cooked TVP or even vegan sausage would be tasty added to the filling! You can also serve the stuffed squash as a side dish to a seitan roast or store-bought vegan roast.
How to Store Leftover Stuffed Squash
Let your leftover squash and filling cool to room temperature, then refrigerate in an airtight container for up to a week.
Use a microwave or the stove/oven to reheat. The squash is best reheated by oven (at 350 °F until warmed through) while the stuffing is best to reheat in a pot (medium heat until warm).
I’ve never tried freezing this recipe but wouldn’t recommend it. The squash is likely to become watery once thawed.
If you make this recipe, please rate and comment below to help others benefit from your experience!
Vegan Stuffed Acorn Squash (with Wild Rice Filling)
- Silicone baking mat (or parchment paper)
- Large pan (with lid)
Wild Rice Stuffing
- ½ cup wild rice , uncooked
- 1 ⅓ cups vegetable broth
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (I use olive or avocado oil)
- ¾ cup celery , finely diced
- ¾ cup onion , finely diced
- ¾ cup carrot , finely diced
- 1 cup lentils , drained and rinsed (if from a can)
- 1 ½ teaspoons Herbamare seasoning (or ½ teaspoon salt + ¾ teaspoon herb blend)
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon ground sage
- ½ teaspoon dry thyme
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon celery seed
- salt (to taste)
- black pepper (to taste)
- ¼ cup dry cranberries
- ½ cup walnuts , chopped
- ¼ cup fresh parsley , chopped
Step 1: Roast Acorn Squash
- Preheat your oven to 400 °F.
- Cut the acorn squash in half and scoop out all its seeds, then wash the squash pieces.2 acorn squash
- Use a fork to poke holes in the squash’s orange flesh. Poke all around the squash (edges and center).
- Place the squash halves on a baking tray lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper for easy clean up.
- Brush the orange flesh of your squash with oil.2 tablespoons olive oil
- Sprinkle with salt and black pepper.salt, black pepper
- Bake for 40-50 minutes or until the squash is tender throughout.
- While the squash roasts, prepare your wild rice filling.
Step 2: Prepare Wild Rice Stuffing
- Wash and chop all the wild rice stuffing vegetables (onions, celery, carrots). Chop the parsley and walnuts.¾ cup celery, ¾ cup onion, ¾ cup carrot, ¼ cup fresh parsley, ½ cup walnuts
- Warm some olive oil in a large pan.2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- Add the onion, celery and carrots and sauté for 3-4 minutes, until they start to soften.
- Next, add the lentils, Herbamare, garlic powder, ground sage, dry thyme, ground nutmeg and celery seed.1 cup lentils, 1 ½ teaspoons Herbamare seasoning, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon ground sage, ½ teaspoon dry thyme, ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg, ¼ teaspoon celery seed
- Stir until everything is well combined.
- Add the wild rice and vegetable broth to your pan. Place a lid on the pan and cook until your rice absorbs all the liquid (about 15 minutes for my wild rice blend; cook your rice to package directions).½ cup wild rice, 1 ⅓ cups vegetable broth
- When your rice is fully cooked, add the cranberries, walnuts and parsley. Stir to combine, then remove your pan from heat.¼ cup dry cranberries, ½ cup walnuts, ¼ cup fresh parsley
- Taste this mixture and add extra salt or black pepper to taste.salt, black pepper
Step 3: Assemble and Serve
- Scoop your wild rice filling evenly amongst the pieces of squash.
- Top with extra chopped parsley if desired.
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About Nicole Stevens
Nicole is a vegan Registered Dietitian (RD) and founder of Lettuce Veg Out.
She helps people thrive on a vegan diet with balanced recipes and easy-to-understand nutrition science.