Mouth-friendly recipe: stuffed butternut squash


Serve up the colors and flavors of fall with this stuffed butternut squash! Filled to the brim with quinoa, kale and cranberries — ingredients that benefit your oral and overall health — this vibrant and satisfying side will brighten your smile and your next autumn feast!


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    Quinoa is rich in fiber and can lower your risk of diabetes.

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    Kale is packed with vitamins A and C for healthy teeth and gums.

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    Cranberries help keep bad bacteria from sticking to teeth and gums. 


2 medium butternut squash, halved with seeds removed

2 tablespoons olive oil

Kosher salt, to taste

Black pepper, to taste

1½ cups chicken broth

¾ cup uncooked quinoa

1 bunch kale, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon dried oregano

⅓ cup fresh cranberries

15 ounces chickpeas, rinsed

Zest of 1 orange

1 tablespoon orange juice

Parmesan cheese, grated


1. Bake the squash: Heat oven to 425 F. Arrange butternut squash with the cut side up on a baking sheet. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil on squash and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake 45 to 55 minutes until squash is tender. Let squash cool before stuffing. Reduce oven temperature to 375 F.

2. Cook the quinoa: While the squash is baking, bring broth to a boil in a small saucepan, then add quinoa. Once it starts boiling again, reduce heat, cover and simmer 12 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit 15 minutes.

3. Make the filling: Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add kale to skillet and cook 4 minutes until wilted, then reduce heat to medium low. Mix in garlic, oregano, salt and pepper. Cook 30 seconds until fragrant. Stir in cooked quinoa, cranberries, chickpeas, orange zest and orange juice.

4. Stuff the squash: Once squash is cool enough to handle, scoop out some of the flesh to make room for the filling. Add filling to squash halves, then bake for 10 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese and serve warm. Enjoy!

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