Looking for winter squash recipes? This one is a stand-out and provides many health benefits. The preparation time is only 15 minutes and the total cook time is 45 minutes. Since it makes 10 servings, you will have plenty to freeze for later or take to work for lunch.
What Are the Health Benefits of Winter Squashes?
Winter squashes are more nutrient-dense than summer squash, which is telling by their bright orange color that signals high vitamin and mineral content.
As far as vitamins and minerals go, the nutrients found in every type varies. They are all high in beta-carotene (the reason why most winter squashes have bright orange flesh), vitamin C, vitamin B6, fiber, magnesium, and potassium.
Winter squashes pack a punch when it comes to health benefits.
To give a few examples, the body converts beta-carotene (an antioxidant) into vitamin A, which benefits the immune system and eye health. Vitamin C helps boost immunity and it aids in the absorption of iron. Vitamin B6 helps the body absorb vitamin B12 and it helps turn food into energy.
Take advantage of winter squash when they’re at their peak. Eating a vegetable-rich diet can help lower the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and certain forms of cancer. Pick a squash that’s firm and check the stem for signs of mold. You’ll know squash is ripe if you knock on it and it sounds hollow.
Healthy Winter Squash Recipes
This recipe makes a healthy, low calorie, belly-filling, tasty soup that’s perfect for a chilly fall or winter day. It’s nicely spiced with ginger.
Squash Bisque with Ginger
Ingredients (makes 10 servings)
• 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
• 2 cups sliced onion
• 2 pounds winter squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 2-inch cubes (4 generous cups)
• 2 pears, peeled, cored, and diced, or 1 can (15 ounces) sliced pears, drained and chopped
• 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
• 2 Tablespoons peeled and chopped fresh ginger, or 1 teaspoon powdered ginger
• 1/2 teaspoon thyme
• 4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth*
• 1 cup water
• 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
• 1/2 cup plain nonfat yogurt
1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat.
2. Add onions and stir until softened, 3 to 4 minutes.
3. Add squash, pears, garlic, ginger and thyme; cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
4. Add broth and water; bring to a simmer.
5. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until squash is tender, about 35 to 45 minutes.
6. Purée soup, in batches if necessary, in a blender. (If using a blender, follow manufacturer’s directions for puréeing hot liquids.)
7. Return soup to pot and heat through. Stir in lemon juice.
8. Garnish each serving with a spoonful of yogurt.
9. Refrigerate leftovers within 2 hours.
• *No broth? Use 1 teaspoon or 1 cube bouillon dissolved in 1 cup water for each cup of broth.
• Freeze extra lemon juice to use later.
Nutrition (per 1 cup serving)
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