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vegetarian lentil stuffed squash

Vegetarian Stuffed Acorn Squash

Andrea Toole
This vegetarian stuffed acorn squash is a beautiful and delicious meal perfect for the colder season. Stuffed with herbs, rice, lentils and parmesan cheese, this is the plant based dinner equivalent of a hug!
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 5 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings


  • 2 medium acorn squash
  • Drizzle olive oil
  • Pinch salt & pepper
  • 1 medium yellow onion, small diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 cup cooked brown rice *See notes
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 19 oz can lentils, drained and rinsed
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, divided


  • Preheat the oven to 400F and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  • Cut both of the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the pulp and seeds. Using a fork pierce the skin side of the squash in a few places to allow the steam to release while cooking.
  • Drizzle the cut side of the squash with some olive oil and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Place the squash cut side down on the baking sheet and bake for 45-50 minutes, flipping halfway until the flesh can be easily pierced with a fork.
  • While the squash cooks, prepare the rest of the recipe. Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat drizzle with olive oil.
  • Once hot, add in the onion, garlic and bell pepper. Saute for 3-5 minutes until soft. Remove from heat and mix in the rice, parsley, lentils, red pepper flakes, thyme, ¾ cup of the parmesan cheese
  • Once the squash are out of the oven stuff generously with the rice mixture. Top with parmesan cheese and return to the oven for an additional 15 minutes until the cheese is melted and nicely browned.
  • Allow to cool for about 10 minutes. Garnish with more fresh parsley, parmesan cheese, pomegranate seeds if desired. Enjoy!


*If your squash are very large, add more cooked rice to the mixture so you have enough to stuff each squash generously. 
Store refrigerated in a covered container for up to 5 days.
Optional garnishes:
  • Fresh parsley
  • Extra cheese
  • Pomegranate seeds (if you're feeling festive)
Keyword acorn squash, dinner ideas, holiday meals, plant based meals, squash recipes, stuffed squash, vegetarian stuffed squash