October 14, 2010


Squash Fest: Butternut Squash Dessert

Aubree photoAubree Cherie Pack blogs over at Living Free where she dreams up new (and sometimes random) ways to create tasty food. Although Aubree has not been tested or diagnosed with Celiac disease, gluten is something that her tummy just can't tolerate. Throw in being lactose intolerant and a long history of family diabetes, and you'll understand why Aubree's blog is gluten, dairy, and refined sugar free! With her blog, she hopes to inspire others with food restrictions to still have fun and get creative in the kitchen.

I have a confession to make. I will not be sharing an acorn soup recipe like I originally told Linda. I’d offer my apologies, but this recipe is so much better! (Don’t get me wrong, I do like my acorn squash soup, but given the choice I’d rather eat this tasty dessert!)

Butternut Squash Dessert 08
I’m all about the sweets. Yes, I do like a good savory dish, but no matter what I make, sweet wins every time! When the weather gets colder my addiction to [dairy free] ice cream starts to diminish slightly and I start baking more.

This dish came about because I wanted to do something creative and tasty for Linda’s Squash special. Although it’s one of the most common squash varieties, I love LoVe LOVE butternut squash. I think it’s naturally sweet all by itself, but I decided to challenge myself by making a ‘real’ dessert. Plus I was craving a treat. The neat thing about this dessert is that it can also just be a meal. I ate one half as my whole dinner and was stuffed! Much like the squash actually…

Butternut Squash Dessert

  • 1 large butternut squash
  • 1 cup soaked and drained raw cashews
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • ½ cup apple cider
  • 10 dates
  • 10 drops liquid stevia
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • Optional: 2 dates for garnish
Butternut Squash Dessert 22


Start by turning on the oven to 450 degrees and lining a medium cookie sheet or pan with aluminum foil.
Wash the squash and then cut it, length-wise, in half. Scoop out the seeds. Place the halves face down (so the skin shows only) on the aluminum foil pan and put in the oven. Bake at 450 degrees for 20 minutes or until the squash is becoming tender and the skin has started to brown.

While the squash is baking, put your presoaked cashews into a food processor/blender with the almond milk and apple cider. Blend on high until you reach a smooth consistency. Add the dates, stevia, and vanilla extract next. Blend on high until it’s mostly smooth. I left some of the date pieces not completely blended but very small within the cashew paste. Spoon the paste into the holes in the squash.

Slice to dates into four pieces and press softly into the cashew paste. Put the squash back into the oven to bake for an additional 10 minutes. Remove and serve!


Looks delicious -- and filling! I can see how this would happily be both dinner and dessert ;-)
It looks so pretty and appealing. Perfect for side dish for company..I love your ideas.. thanks for this great recipe.
Freaking brilliant Aubree! And I am so excited that it fits our new dietary restrictions (no dairy or eggs), woo-hoo! I think cashews just might be the #1 miracle food, with all the creamy yumminess you can create with it.

I happen to have all of the ingredients on hand so I think I will be making this soon, thank you!

Yum, Yum...this looks mighty good. Gotta try it myself. Thanks!
How long do I soak the cashews and what do I soak them in? I also LOVE butternut squash.
Aubree - you are so darned creative and inventive with your recipes. I love it. We have stuffed squash regularly - does it get any better? Well you've just told me that yes it does! I've never even thought to make it a sweet stuffing!
Thanks for the all kind words everyone! You really know how to lift a girl up :)

@oceangal - If you're patient, they say to soak the cashews in water for over an hour. But I'm certainly not patient (ha!) and so I use warm water and I soak them for about 20 minutes. It's not a perfectly smooth texture that way, but they still blend/process up nicely.

(Does anyone know differently?)
Oh my, this looks delicious! I can't wait to try it!

P.S. On the soaked cashews, I've read 20 minutes is enough to do the job. I don't know what the job is, per se, but I've seen that time on a couple sites. When I make dairy free whipped cream, that's about how long I soak them.
Oh wow, this looks GREAT! I love squash in sweet and savory recipes. This sounds amazing.
Just realized I never commented on this post, darn it! I think this dish is just gorgeous and so clever of the creative Miss Aubree. :-) I love all her recipes, and it's worth getting a butternut squash to make this one for sure. ;-)

I don't know how I missed this, but this sounds amazing! I love everything going on in this recipe!

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