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Stuffed maple acorn squash for a Thanksgiving holiday side recipe

So after releasing my wild rice recipe on Canadian Thanksgiving it occurred to me the next day while at the grocery store to stuff it in an acorn squash. By the time I made my post it would be bit late for Canadian Thanksgiving so I’m sharing this upgraded version of cranberry pecan wild rice stuffed in an acorn squash for American Thanksgiving and Christmas as a rustic plant based side! Of course you can stuff the squash with other foods like quinoa with cranberries and nuts, I just did the wild rice with cranberries.

1 acorn squash

2 Tablespoons maple syrup

2 Tbsp Nutiva’s butter flavor or regular coconut oil or ghee

1 cup wild rice

Cup each cranberries and raw nuts (pecans and walnuts) (i also threw in a few mulberries)

Coconut flakes

2 tbsp Lemon or orange zest

3/4 tsp Pumpkin pie spice (see this easy diy recipe)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place squash on a lined baking sheet flesh side up.

Cut acorn squash in half into to heart shapes, down the depression line (disclosure, acorn squash is harder to cut than a pumpkin so I had a family member help me here, but if you prefer a simple version without acorn squash see this wild rice recipe).

Season the squash generously with sea salt. mix together a tbsp of maple syrup with a tbsp or (butter flavor) coconut oil and a 1/2 tsp pumpkin and/or lemon pepper seasoning. Spread in cavity of squash. Acorn squash is bland so really be generous with those or sub your favorite all purpose seasoning or a little thyme. Drizzle with melted coconut oil or melted butter flavor coconut oil or ghee. If not using pumpkin spice olive oil can be used with herb varaiation

Bake for approx 33-45 min or until a fork can go in easily.

In the meantime make the rice. Put the cup of wild rice into a pot with 2 1/3 cups/590 mL of water. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat. Add a tablespoon of of Nutiva’s naturally butter flavoured coconut oil or ghee. Stir in generous sea salt (the coconut oil is not salty like ghee). Cover and simmer for 47-50 min.Remove from heat but keep the lid on for 10 minutes until the water is absorbed. fluff with fork. Mix in cranberries.

In a seperate bowl mix together a tbsp of maple syrup and a tbsp butter flavor coconut oil or coconut oil or vegan butter, and some sea salt and 1/4 tsp pumpkin spice. Drizzle over pecans and walnuts. Toss into the rice. Top with zest.

Stuff squash with the rice and fixings then bake at 325 degrees another 5-8 minutes or until golden, coconut burns fast Specially if your oven is still hot from baking the squash so check often and don’t walk away. top with extra zest. Serve hot and enjoy!

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