Need a simple and wholesome meatless meal ready in 30 minutes or less? This fall-inspired maple roasted butternut squash taco recipe is loaded with nutritious ingredients that will get devoured in an instant!
When two incredible things collide together like butternut squash and Mexican cuisine, something tasty is bound to happen. Sometimes the simple things bring the most delight, and in this case, I’m talking about tacos. In my family, Taco Night always brings a little extra cheer, maybe because you get to be creative and have fun adding your own toppings.
With autumn nights finally giving us cooler evenings, I can’t help but want to add some seasonal ingredients and flavors for these maple roasted butternut squash tacos. Trust me. The recipe will bring joy to all, even those meat eaters!
This recipe was not something I planned. I opened up the fridge and looked at my options for creating our next meal. I had a bunch of extra ingredients from some slow cooker chicken chili I had made the day before. Then the light bulb went off in my mind, and a splendid “aha” moment occurred.
With a few quick chops with my chef’s knife, I was ready to dress the little cubes of squash with some delicious sweet ingredients to make each bite a little more exciting and festive.
How To Roast Butternut Squash
- Temperature- High temperatures of 400 degrees drive the moisture out of the squash and helps it cook in a relatively short period. The higher temperature will also add browning on the surface of some of the squash, which equals more flavor!
- Time- Depending on the size of the squash, it takes about 15 to 20 minutes to cook through with some light brown coloring. A slight char adds a nice layer of smokey flavor to the vegetable. Use a knife or fork to check the tenderness of the squash. If it’s easy to pierce, you’re ready to go!
- Seasonings- Butternut squash has a hint of natural sweetness so to enhance that element, I added savory seasonings like salt, garlic, and chili powder. A sprinkle of ground cinnamon adds warm, sweet aromas to the squash. A drizzle of maple syrup at the very end glazes the roasted squash without burning the sugar.
Let’s have some fun with toppings!
It’s anything your heart desires, but I’m a big fan of color. Not only is it visually stunning, the more variety and rainbow of colors, the more plant phytonutrients you’ll get in each serving. Let’s add food with benefits! Your cells will thank me later.
I like to fill small bowls with chopped tomatoes, sliced avocado, green onion, red onion, cilantro, lime wedges, and plain Greek yogurt and set them on the table. This healthy taco bar style meal is a big hit with my family, and it makes eating together a little more fun and interactive. My son James likes trying each of the toppings, and it’s pretty neat seeing his reaction to trying new flavors.
This recipe is a great meatless Monday option or a refreshing twist on Taco Tuesday. What toppings will you add to your meal? I’d love to hear!
More taco recipes you might like
What is the best way to peel a butternut squash?
Prepping a butternut squash can feel a little daunting with its thick skin. However, it can be easily peeled so you can use it for your favorite recipes. If you want to quickly soften the outside skin to make it easier to peel, add the whole butternut squash in the microwave and cook for 30 seconds (this step can be skipped). Make sure your chef knife is sharp, and you have a sturdy and dry cutting board. Cut about a 1/4-inch slice from the bottom and stem side of the squash. Then hold the squash in one hand and use a Y-peeler to remove the outside skin. You can also cut the squash in half, in between the more slender portion of the squash meets the wider portion. Then place the unpeeled squash cut side down on the board and use a chef knife to carefully cut the peel off in sections as you would with the peel of an orange.
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Butternut Squash Tacos
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- In a medium-sized bowl combine squash, olive oil, garlic, chili, cinnamon, pepper, and salt. Toss to combine.
- Transfer to a sheet pan covered in foil and lightly greased with oil.
- Roast squash for 10 minutes, then use a spatula to rotate and flip them.
- Roast another 10 minutes. Take the sheet pan out of the oven.
- Evenly drizzle 1 teaspoon maple syrup over the roasted squash. Use a spatula to gently mix and coat.
- Roast for another 2 minutes.
- Warm the tortillas and evenly divide the squash among the tacos.
- Topping Suggestions: Avocado, sour cream, non fat plain Greek yogurt, green onions, red onions, cheese, lime wedges, tomatoes, salsa.
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