Roast Acorn Squash with Holiday Stuffing

Roasted Acorn Squash with Holiday Stuffing makes a delicious appetizer or side. Truly a tasty dish of contrasts, it's surprisingly light. Chewy sweet fruit, crispy almond slices, crunchy golden cornbread and gooey cheese all wrapped up in creamy sweet roasted acorn squash.
I like to make cornbread to go with a nice bowl of chili in the fall so I usually have some leftover cornbread that makes it's way into this yummy holiday stuffing. The stuffing can be used to fill many things but in this dish it's quite special. The bright, tart dried cranberries and the salty golden cheese go so well with the creamy sweet squash and then, of course, there's the brittle crunch of the sliced almonds. 
If you don't have any dried cranberries on hand you could certainly use any other dried fruit you like. If you like your stuffing a little more fruit forward, you might soak the dried fruit first in a bit of hot water to re-hydrate it some and bring out more of it's juicy flavor.
I roast the acorn squash rings before filling them with the stuffing to be sure the squash is roasted thoroughly before the holiday stuffing has become too dry.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees then pop the rings into the oven for 20-30 minutes until they are easily pierced with a fork. This will depend on the thickness of the squash rings. I like to cut mine on the thinner side, close to 1/4 inch thick for an appetizer. You may want to cut them thicker to serve as a side dish.
This easy acorn squash sheet pan recipe is dressy enough for your holiday table but feel free to make it anytime. It's a healthy delicious addition to any meal or perhaps a light meal on it's own. I think this would be a lovely addition to brunch.
Happy Holidays!
~Melisa

Roast Acorn Squash with Holiday Stuffing

Ingredients

1 acorn squash

2 cups cornbread torn into 1 inch pieces

1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

2/3 cup chicken stock

3 tablespoons dried cranberries

3 tablespoons almond slices

1 teaspoon dried minced onion

1 teaspoon celery salt

1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon rubbed sage

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Method

Slice the acorn squash into rings then remove the seeds. Place the rings on a parchment lined bake sheet and spray lightly with oil. Roast in a preheated oven at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes until they are easily pierced with a fork.

Break up the corn bread into large chunks. Mix the almonds and cranberries into the torn corn bread then stir in the seasonings, 2 tablespoons shredded mozzarella and the chicken stock.

Fill the baked squash rings with the stuffing and top with more shredded mozzarella then return the stuffed acorn squash to the oven until the stuffing is warmed, toasted and the cheese on top is golden and bubbly.

 

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