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Butternut Squash Chili

The fall weather has been pretty up and down lately – we’ve brought in as many peppers as we can before the frost last week and now it’s supposed to be in the 70s today! This is a good recipe to have ready for a chilly night. Omnivores and vegetarians will enjoy it, and it comes together really easily. When tomato season is over I always keep fire roasted tomatoes on hand, but if you can’t find them regular will do. This chili can be made in a large batch (pictured) or a smaller 4 – 6 serving batch. The leftovers will freeze well.

Butternut Squash Chili

Sweat the onions, garlic, and pepper while you break down the butternut squash. I like to peel the whole thing with a Y-shaped vegetable peeler, then separate the bulb shaped bottom and longer “neck”. The solid neck of the squash is easy to dice. Cut the bulb shaped end in half, scoop out the seeds and dice the what’s left. Add the squash after the spices.

Butternut Squash Chili

After the butternut goes into the pan, just simmer everything with the tomatoes, stock, and black beans. We often cook beans from dry on the farm, but it’s worth having a few cans around for easy weeknight meals. Serve this chili with sour cream or greek yogurt, shredded cheese, and any other chili fixings!

Butternut Squash Chili (serves 8 -10)

1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cubed
1 onion, diced 1 bell pepper or sweet Italian pepper any color
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
28 oz can fire roasted crushed tomatoes (or crushed tomatoes)
28 oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes (or diced tomatoes)
4 cups vegetable stock
28 oz can black beans ( or 2 14.5 oz cans)
2 tablespoons lime juice or apple cider vinegar salt and pepper shredded cheese, sour cream, etc. to serve

Heat the olive oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, and peppers and cook until the onions are softened. Add the spices and combine with the onion mixture, cook for 2-3 minutes. Put the butternut squash in the pan, and cook for a few minutes until the squash starts to soften. Add the tomatoes, stock, and beans with  a large pinch of salt. Simmer for 20 – 30 minutes until squash is soft. Add vinegar or lime, and adjust seasoning if necessary.

Note: To make a smaller batch that serves 4 -6 use the smaller size cans of tomatoes and beans, half the stock, and half the squash. Adjust spices if necessary.

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