4 Ways to Use Winter Squash Puree

4 Dec


I’ve been roasting Thai Kang Kob squashes, a variety of winter squash, for two weeks straight have been using the puree in anything and everything I can think of, including:

-Winter Squash Cookies (they’re vegan!)

-Pumpkin (aka winter squash) Spice Lattes (actually contains the squash puree!)

-Pumpkin Pie Filling Smoothies (but dietitian approved!)

-Baked Pumpkin Oatmeal (attention meal preppers!)

The recipes all call for a mix of fall spices like cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and allspice. What can I say, I’ve got pumpkin pie spice fever this year. You can substitute store-bought pumpkin pie spice if preferred, or make your own version.

Read on for a how-to on making the squash puree and for all the details on the above recipes.


To prepare the squash:

-Preheat the oven to 375F.

-Cut the squash into big hunks and scoop out the seeds (although you could just leave the seeds on and roast them and scoop them out after roasting).

-Rub with a little olive oil (maybe 2 teaspoons for one large squash) all over (I put the oil in my hands first and then rub).

-Bake for about an hour to an hour and 15 minutes (flipping the squash over midway through baking to ensure even browning), or until the inner flesh is easily pierced with a fork (the above right photo also has some sweet potatoes roasting because I was multi-tasking).

-Let cool to the touch. Using a spoon, scoop out the soft flesh from the skin (it’s ok if some skin gets in). Pulse in a blender until pureed. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

*This method works for other winter squash varieties such as butternut and kabocha squash. I have never tried using the puree of smaller squash varieties like delicata, acorn or carnival because it is harder and more of an annoyance to get the puree out of the smaller varieties.


Winter Squash Cookies

These are a great dessert or snack cookie, and are basically vegan (except I made them un-vegan by adding in chocolate chips). Feel free to add in extra spices like ground ginger, nutmeg or cloves as well, or sub in pumpkin pie spice.

Recipe (my adaptations/specifications are in parentheses) from Giada’s Feel Good Food

makes about 24 cookies 


1 cup all-purpose flour

2/3 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt (*I used kosher salt)

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

3/4 cup raw sugar (*I used raw cane sugar)

1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree (*I used my homemade squash puree)

1/3 cup safflower or grapeseed oil (*I used avocado oil, but canola or coconut could also work)

1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup raisins (*I used a heaping 1/4 cup dried cranberries and 1/4 cup chocolate chips. Note that if you want this recipe strictly vegan make sure to use vegan chocolate chips.)


Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper (or a silpat mat).

In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, oats, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and allspice. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, pumpkin puree, oil, maple syrup, and vanilla. Using a flexible rubber spatula, gradually stir the flour mixture into the pumpkin mixture. Stir in the raisins (or cranberries/chocolate).

For each cookie, drop 1 generous tablespoon of batter onto a prepared sheet, spacing the mounds about 1 inch apart (or use a mini ice cream scoop). Using moistened fingertips, flatten each to a 2-inch diameter round.

Bake the cookies until browned around the edges and no longer sticky on top, 17 to 20 minutes. Using a spatula, transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool.


Pumpkin (aka Winter Squash) Spice Latte

I love this pumpkin spice latte because it contains actual pumpkin (or in my case, squash) puree. It’s got the signature pumpkin pie spices and the cozy milky latte vibe with just the right amount of sweetness. The blender does a semi-decent job of making foamed/frothed milk. No fancy latte art here, but you still get the warm foam. First warm the milk mixture on the stove or in the microwave, then transfer to the blender to froth.

recipe adapted from Weelicious 

serves 2 (can easily be halved to serve 1 or multiplied to serve more) 


1 1/2 cups milk (I like to use 2% milk)

2 tablespoons squash or pumpkin puree

1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon ground ginger

pinch cloves

pinch allspice

1 – 1 1/2 cups brewed coffee (use more or less depending on preference)


Whisk all of the ingredients except the coffee in a small saucepan and warm slowly on the stove over medium heat. *Or, whisk ingredients in a microwave save large mug, medium bowl or glass measuring cup and microwave in 15 to 30 second increments, stirring between each interval, until desired warmth. Once warm, transfer to the blender and blend on a low-medium setting for about 30 seconds or until frothy.

Divide the brewed coffee between two mugs. Pour the blended milk mixture into the coffee.



Pumpkin Pie Filling Smoothie

This smoothie literally tastes like pumpkin pie filling, but it has the added nutritional benefits of ground flaxseeds and nut butter for fiber and healthy fat. Vanilla flavored collagen protein adds extra protein and some sweetness. For a plant based version, use hemp seeds and vanilla extract, or a vanilla flavored plant based protein powder.

I also made versions of this smoothie with a mix of hachiya persimmon pulp, squash puree, banana and frozen cauliflower.

recipe adapted from Kelly LeVeque’s Instagram 

serves 2 (can easily be halved to serve 1 or multiplied to serve more) 


1 1/2 cups milk (I like to use 2% milk)

1 cup winter squash or pumpkin puree

2 1/2 tablespoons ground flaxseed

2 tablespoons almond or mixed nut butter

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

pinch ground cloves

pinch ground allspice

2 servings (scoops) vanilla collagen protein OR 2 tablespoons hemp seeds + 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract)

1 cup ice

Optional: 3 sheets of graham crackers, 2 for blending into the smoothie and 1 for crumbling on top


Place all ingredients in a blender and pulse until smooth. Divide among two glasses. Optional: crumble extra graham crackers on top.



Baked Pumpkin Oatmeal

After baking, let cool slightly and cut into squares or scoop onto plates or bowls. Serve with yogurt or a pour of milk and sprinkle with cinnamon on top. Also tastes great with leftover cranberry sauce or a drizzle more of maple syrup.

Recipe adapted from Pamela Salzman via The Crunchy Radish 

makes about 6 


1 1/2 tablespoons butter or coconut oil, melted and cooled slightly, plus more for buttering the baking dish

3/4 cup pumpkin or squash puree

1/4 cup pure maple syrup

2 cups milk

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

1 teaspoon baking powder

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (or sub 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice for all of the spices)

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 cup chopped nuts (walnuts, pecans, or almonds), divided


Preheat oven to 375F. Butter an 8-inch square or 9-inch round baking dish.

In a large bowl, whisk together melted butter, pumpkin puree, maple syrup, milk, egg, and vanilla. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, stir together the oats, baking powder, spices, salt and 1/4 cup of the nuts.

Pour dry mixture into the wet and stir to combine. Transfer to prepared baking dish and spread evenly. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup nuts over the top (I accidentally added all of the nuts to the mixture and forgot to save some for the top).

Bake for 35 minutes, or until the oat mixture is set and wet ingredients are absorbed.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: