Apple, Sausage, and Cranberry Stuffed Acorn Squash

Thanksgiving morning. That is what your house will smell like when making this dish. And is there anything better than that?! I absolutely love the aroma of celery, onions, butter, and garlic sautéing on the stove. It brings me back to my childhood and memories of my Mom cooking up a storm every Thanksgiving.

My mom was a great cook and she always went all out for the holidays. I remember the one year, she ordered a goose for Christmas from the local farm. She was so excited to make us a Christmas goose! I’ll never forget the screams and crying we all heard from the kitchen when she unwrapped the goose from the butchers paper! The goose still had its neck and head attached and my poor mother was horrified!! Needless to say, we never had goose again.

This dish is a twist on my mom’s famous stuffing. She always made the best stuffing, full of apples, raisins, and walnuts. For this version, I decided to use dried cranberries, tart apples, and sage sausage. I love the combination of the sweet tart apple paired with cranberries and savory sage sausage. I top it all off with a generous sprinkling of fresh Parmesan cheese. The salty cheese adds the perfect finishing touch!

Acorn squash is so abundant this time of year and partners so well with all of the flavors of the stuffing. Not to mention it’s a great source of vitamin C and potassium. And it’s really easy to prepare! Just cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, brush with some olive oil, salt and pepper, and roast. It’s that easy!

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I usually serve this Apple, Sausage, and Cranberry Stuffed Acorn Squash with a nice simple salad and some crusty bread. One half of the stuffed squash is plenty for one serving. Although my husband has been known to have seconds when I make this. Which is amazing since he is a known squash hater! My sister says it’s a squash miracle!

This recipe encompasses all the flavors of fall and the holidays that we all love in one simple dish. It’s a complete meal that is not only easy and delicious, it’s healthy too!

Enjoy!
Jenn xoxo

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Apple, Sausage, and Cranberry Stuffed Acorn Squash Recipe 

3 acorn squash cut in half and seeded
1 pound sage sausage
3 Tbs butter
1 C diced peeled apples (2 medium)
1/2 C diced onion
1/2 C diced celery
1 clove minced garlic
1/4 C dried cranberries
1 1/4 C chicken stock
2 1/2 C  seasoned cornbread stuffing
Salt and pepper
1 Tbs olive oil
1/2 C freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Line baking sheet with parchment paper

Cut each acorn squash in half and scoop out the center and the seeds. Cut off a little bit of each side of squash so it will lay flat on the baking sheet.

Brush inside of each half of squash with olive oil and add salt and pepper.

Roast squash face down for about 45 minutes

While squash is roasting make the filling

In a large sauté pan or skillet cook sage sausage and then set aside.

In same skillet you cooked the sausage in, add the butter, onion, celery, and apples and over a medium-low heat until tender then add the minced garlic.

Add the chicken stock to the vegetable mixture and bring to a boil.

Remove from heat and add the cornbread stuffing, let stand for about 5 minutes and then fluff with fork. And in the dried cranberries and the reserved sausage.

Once squash is cooked remove from the oven and turn over. Fill each cavity with equal amounts of the stuffing mixture.

Return squash to the oven and bake for another 20 minutes.

Sprinkle each acorn squash with some Parmesan cheese and return back to oven and bake until Cheese is melted.

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