Roasted butternut squash recipe

Roasted butternut squash recipe is a breeze to make and incredibly tasty and nutritious too. It took me just one hour from start to finish.

It is rich in beta-carotenes but less than perfect if you are banting; roasting raises the glycemic index. It is definitely one of Bernard Preston's favourite dishes but you do have to earn the right to enjoy it by keeping physically active; in general take a short walk after any starchy meal.

If it is late autumn and you are lucky enough to have them growing in the vegetable patch, then don a hat and look for a vine that's died back leaving the nutty-brown fruit exposed.

Quick roasted butternut squash

Pluck one or two and, on the way past the herb garden pick a few sprigs of thyme.

Otherwise it's off to the grocer; right now, in season, a pocket of seven butternut cost 24-rands in South Africa; that is about two dollars. It is wise to eat these foods late in autumn.

Cut one or two in half and spoon out the seeds. Note the deep orange colour of your fruit; this is one of the richest sources of beta and other carotenes. These are some of the most important phytonutrients in your diet; amongst other things they are the precursors to vitamin A.

You can collect and lightly roast those seeds by the way; they are very nutritious but it is a time-consuming business. I'm fascinated by the way our hens fight over them; it is just one of the reasons why our free range eggs have naturally golden orange yolks.

But in addition butternut have proven benefits, preventing a host of serious eye diseases like macular degeneration; and also lung tumours.

It's low in carbohydrate and perfect if you are following our modified Banting diet[2]; and full of fibre to keep your colon happy. Definitely do not discard the fibrous layer just below the skin; that is where the prebiotics lie that feed the all-important microbiome living joyfully in the gut.

Do forget the notion that a super-smooth texture is vital in our food; by removing so of the fibre you are in effect then refining your starch as in white bread and rice.

This incidentally proved a good moment for a maths lesson. My granddaughter appeared at my elbow and was asking about the roasted butternut squash recipe that she had just enjoyed. Four halves make two of the fruit; not an easy concept for a seven-year old. How much interaction do you have with the little people in your life?

It is what gives us elderly folk a reason to keep living. Family is important is a central theme in our love of life.

The Japanese call it ikigai; a central theme in all five of the Blue Zones of the world where ten times as many folk live to fit and active old age.

Roasted Butternut Squash Recipe

Roasted butternut squash recipe is so easy to prepare.

  1. Slice the butternuts in half and scoop out the seeds.
  2. Pop them into the microwave oven for ten minutes.
  3. Preheat your oven to 180oC.
  4. Meantime peel a clove of garlic for each half.
  5. Place the butternut halves onto a roasting pan and score them so the olive oil can penetrate.
  6. Drop a generous blob of butter into each butternut bowl and dribble olive oil over the whole. 
  7. Place a clove of garlic and a sprig of thyme into each bowl.
  8. Season with salt and freshly-ground black pepper.
  9. Pop the roasting pan into the hot oven.
  10. After 30 minutes test if it is tender. If you are having a vegetarian friend to dinner or you are health nuts who want to reach a zesty eighty with all your marbles intact, then place a generous scoop of hummus into one of the bowls; pop it back into the oven until done.

An alternative method

  1. Peel the butternut, retaining the fibrous layer below the skin.
  2. Cut in half and remove the seeds.
  3. Crosscut on a chopping-board using a heavy knife; roughly 15 mm thick.
  4. Drizzle them thoroughly with melted butter or olive oil; place the slices on a baking tray.
  5. Drape a few fronds of thyme over the slices. Roast in a hot oven for 30 minutes or until well browned.
  6. Remove the tray carefully, it is very hot obviously; flip the slices using a metal spatula. Roast for a further fifteen minutes.
  7. Place a large platter in the oven to get hot.


  1. Melt a goodly chunk of butter in a pan and when hot drop in a dozen or so pecan halves, stirring frequently until brown.
  2. Scrape some of the zest off a lemon or lime; peel and remove the pips from one half. Whizz it with a tablespoon of water using a stick blender.
  3. Take the pecans off the heat and after a minute or two, pour the lemon juice into the mixture; stir.


  1. Arrange the butternut slices on the hot platter.
  2. Pour the hot pecans and blended lemon pulp over the butternut; sprinkle with chopped-chives.
  3. Allow your guests to individually add their own salt.
  4. A large bowl of hummus would add to the meal.


Butternut halves

We make something of a fetish of retaining as much fibre from our vegetables and fruit as possible. Constipation is a common problem with consequent serious bowel disease. Also, more than half of the nutrients are to be found in the pulp of the lemon for example; don't toss it. It adds more texture to your cooking; and is less like baby food.

That fibrous portion is not digested, adds no calories but the teeming billions in the colon go on a feeding-frenzy producing the short chain fatty acids that are so important; they supply energy to the cells lining the gut.

Restricting the salt lessens any bloating.

Roasted butternut on baking tray

Do you have a big garden?

Oops I forgot to put the camera onto macro and it's a bit blurred; that is a lump of butter, a clove of garlic and a sprig of thyme herb benefits.

Roasted butternut with garlic thyme and butter

We are self-confessed greenies so I would never just bake a chicken or roasted butternut squash recipe. In this case I've added new potatoes and a zucchini from the garden; and an onion.

Reducing our use of electricity is an important part of saving our planet for the great grandchildren.

Thyme is one of our favourite herbs; I can't say I know of any particularly health benefits. It just adds a little something to your cooking. And of course now that butter is back[3], I am unembarrassed about the good dollop.

Garlic goes into simply everything and we use olive oil on all our salads and vegetables.

One other interesting feature is that our oven is powered entirely from the sun; he comes bearing gifts to mankind and we partake freely.

A solar generator is perhaps something of a luxury in well-governed countries with a reliable energy supply; but with our electrical network in near collapse in South Africa, having an alternate source of power is essential.

You can keep adding new generations of panels of different power with the use of diodes but rather do your planning properly and go big from the beginning; it reduces complications.

Residential solar panels

Butternut nutrients

Winter squash are probably best known for their beta carotenes because of their bright orange colour; carrots too, for example. And yes, it's true; just three tablespoons of cooked butternut contains your required daily allowance of vitamin A.

Supplement companies will try to con you into believing that you don't need a roasted butternut squash recipe; all that is required is a vitamin A pill at ten times the price but fifty times easier. But just wait; what else is there in these delicious winter beauties?

Lutein is another carotenoid found in green leafy veggies and yellow vegetables; it's particularly high in butternut. By absorbing the more destructive blue light in the spectrum, it prevents damage to the retina in the eye; it is also in egg yolks by the way.

Zeaxanthin is another of these carotenoid pigments that complements lutein, also by absorbing blue light; and giving those foods a yellow colour. It too protects the retina and is found mainly in a part near the centre; you've heard of macula degeneration, I am sure. It is particularly rich in corn and peppers but also in your butternut. Enjoy them all in season.

How to grow corn is another of my favourites, if you have a large garden.

Beta-cryptoxanthin is yet another of these vitamin A precursors found in winter squash, also giving butter its yellow colour; it too is an anti-oxidant and the most powerful substance known to prevent Alzheimer's disease. This is not small beer we are discussing.

Of particularly interest to the DC is its anti-inflammatory properties. Oncologists are doing research since it's been established that folk low in beta cryptoxanthin have a much greater risk of getting malignant lung tumours.

Are you a smoker? Make sure that this roasted butternut squash is regularly on the menu. Better still, enjoy your winter squash and quit the weed; it costs on average seven years of your life. I watched both my parents die in misery from lung disease long before their time.

  • Stop smoking permanently[5].

To add to the misery smokers are paid $5 an hour less on average; and find it more difficult to get employment. If you insist make sure you are running your own business.


Ripe and immature butternut.

Beta carotenes and flavonoids belong to a group of substances called phytochemical foods; they prevent disease and enhance our well-being. Your roasted butternut squash recipe is rich in them. Just look at the vibrant orange colour once they are properly ripe; and the anaemic appearance when reaped too soon.

Sometimes they are called phytonutrients; synonyms. Others are the lignans in flax seeds and polyphenols in fruit. Then there are flavonones in citrus and the indoles involved in tryptophan formation; several vital neurotransmitters like serotonin and melatonin. Indoles are found in your greens.

They have powerful antioxidant properties, protect our genes and are the reason why folk eating eight or more coloured foods every day have a 35% lower all-cause of death; that's massive.

My point?

My point is that it is ludicrous to start thinking you don't need to eat these brightly coloured foods; all you need is a vitamin A tablet. Your roasted butternut squash recipe and just the plain boiled vegetable with a dollop of butter have a great many other micro nutrients; and the much needed fibre for the colon. They are all important for sparkling well-being; and the taste is to die for. 

There is absolutely no virtue in fussing about whether you've had enough cryptoxanthin today; you will become a neurotic junkie. Just eat from as wide a spectrum of foods as possible and you will get plenty.


Banting uses a very low carbohydrate diet but high in fat to lose weight; not only are you not ravenous all day but the pounds really do come off. This butternut squash recipe isn't usually allowed, partly because it has got starch, albeit complex carbohydrate but also since the roasting raises the rate at which the sugars are absorbed in the small intestine.

If you have a weight problem, then think rather of boiling your butternut and turning it into a soup; it will have a lower GI.

We use pressure cooking to great effect, with solar power but of course you can use the appliance on utility electricity just as effectively.

But I have serious issues with these ketogenic diets, as they are called; you can read about it at Banting rebuttal; one of them is that butternut is strictly on the banned list because of its starch. But what's interesting is that these gourds have in the first place very little carb; and secondly have a low glycemic index. That means that they do not induce an insulin rush like potato and white rice, for example. In short they are not fattening.

I've just had a patient who decided to bant, unbeknown to me or his doctor; but a routine cholesterol test has soared over the moon. He is now on statins.

Our Banting diet modified has lots of merit without the downside.


Whilst on the subject of all the beta carotene rich yellows, we certainly mustn't forget the delicious, nutritious samples from the citrus fruit list. In my humble opinion, an orange juice press is a must in every family; once you know the facts, see below, you will never go back to drinking OJ from a carton.

After roasted butternut squash recipe, buttered gem squash is my favourite.

Citrus five jug

I timed it; it takes me exactly two minutes to halve and press seven citrus fruits. This is a mixture of oranges, grapefruit and mandarin; and a touch of lemon and a lime. Remove the strainer and make sure you enjoy the pulp too; that's where more than half of the good stuff is.

If you know how to grow corn as well as citrus and squash then you'll be getting plenty of the yellow phytochemicals.

Organic butternut

Organic butternut I fear is largely only for those who will grow their own. It's not rocket science; just look at these beauties. The largest of these monsters weighed in at nine and half pounds and was 40cm long. Unlike some giant fruit they are full of flavour and make perfect roasted butternut squash recipe.

We're going to enjoy him for our easy butternut squash soup recipe this week. A clove adds wonder to the flavour and it has a particularly strong anti-inflammatory compound in it. Herbs eugenol oil may interest you if you want to delve further.

As an aside getting daily small amounts of anti-inflammatory compounds regularly from your food means fewer painful joints and muscles.

If you have a large garden then growing butternut squash is a breeze. They have very big leaves and keep the weeds down themselves. In one bed it's fine to let them battle it out with sweet potatoes.

This summer we have 15 butternut growing; a friend has just brought me new runners, so today I'll be planting sweet potatoes amongst the vines.

We'll be having plenty of roasted butternut squash this winter; one interesting development is how the hens love them once cooked. Perhaps that's why their yolks are so orange.

Building a chicken tractor has kept Bernard Preston out of mischief for a couple weeks. We move it every week or so to a new location leaving a nicely fertilized and tilled piece of ground behind, just ready for the next crop.

Never purchase supermarket butternut squash soup. It's loaded with toxic chemicals in an attempt to preserve it unto everlasting life and bring you a lot sooner to the pearly gates; very expensive too.

Organic butternut

Another great source of these yellow carotenes is this wonderful gooseberry jam recipe[4]; they are somewhat controversial as they are among the invasive alien species but also provide many benefits to humans and birds.

Cape gooseberries

Roasted butternut squash recipes

Remember that cooking vegetables in the oven raises the glycemic index. If you're insulin resistant then these roasted butternut squash recipes may increase your blood sugar unnecessarily and contribute to weight gain; keep the portion sizes small. 

The one thing the ketogenic diet folk have got right, like those who are banting is that you can immediately halve your glucose medication including insulin if you cut out all refined carbs; and even some of the good ones. In fact you must or you'll become hypoglycemic; too low and that is very dangerous for diabetics.

Food as medicine points to interesting research that type-2 diabetics can put their disease into remission with lifestyle changes alone, requiring no medication whatsoever.

The way you cook your food is vital. In general boiling is more beneficial and better still is to let your roasted butternut squash recipes cool overnight in the fridge; and reheat them the next day. They "retrograde" which makes it more difficult for enzymes to digest in the small intestine; there is much less of a blood sugar rush.

Bernard Preston

Bernard Preston is something of a slow food, made fast junkie. He is into delicious vegetables and fruit straight from the garden; and organic eggs from his choice of a chicken tractor design. But this roasted butternut squash recipe is one of his favourites right through the autumn and winter.

Bernie's busy too with his seventh book, Priests Denied. Meantime enjoy one of the other six. Available and very cheap on your Kindle or smartphone from Amazon.

Then he likes easy to prepare healthy meals; these butternut squash soup recipes are always a favourite on a cold winter's night. Add some coconut cream and a little curry spice; or ginger and cumin for something different.

His roasted butternut squash recipes are always in demand from the family.

  1. Beta-carotenes are an excellent source of provitamin A to prevent blindness
  2. Modified Banting diet. Web:
  3. Butter is back
  4. Gooseberry jam recipe
  5. Stop smoking permanently. Web:

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