Stuffed Honeynut Squash With Quinoa, Brown Rice & Walnut Filling

March 24, 2021

This sweet roasted honeynut squash is stuffed with a quinoa, brown rice, and a walnut filling. It is topped with a honey-balsamic drizzle. Everyone in my home loved this recipe!


This recipe is by Zena at

“I’m Zena (zeɪnə | زينة), a language nerd, dancer, Zumba instructor, pizza enthusiast, and of course, recipe innovator.Hi, I’m passionate about creating innovative, nutritious, and Mediterranean-inspired plant-based recipes that anyone could enjoy.”





CUISINE: American

SERVES: 3 people

AUTHOR: Zena at

I modified this recipe by adding the following ingredients: garlic, ginger, ground cinnamon, turmeric, applesauce, & spinach. I also substituted: honey for maple syrup, & applesauce for pear.


  • 3 honeynut squash (or small butternut squash)
  • 2.5 tbsp olive oil (optional), you can use veggie broth (for oil-free)
  • 1 cup Trader Joe’s Organic Tricolor Quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup Trader Joe’s Quick-Cook Organic Brown Basmati Rice
  • 2 cups Trader Joe’s Low Sodium Vegetable Broth
  • ⅓ cup walnuts, chopped or cashews
  • 2 tbsp Trader Joe’s Organic Sage, Chiffonade
  • 1 cup Trader Joe’s Organic Baby Spinach, Chiffonade
  • 1/2 cup Trader Joe’s Unsweetened Applesauce, or apple chopped
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp turmeric
  • 1/8 tsp ginger powder

Maple-Balsamic Drizzle (Optional)

  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp Trader Giotto’s Gold Balsamic Vinegar of Modena: ALCETO BALSAMICO DI MODENA


  • Microwave the honeynut squash for 3 1/2 minutes to make it easier to cut into.

Cut the honeynut squash lengthwise into two halves, and scoop out the seeds and pulp. Discard insides or save for later use.

  • Gather & measure ingredients: 1 cup quinoa, 1 cup brown rice, 2 cups veggie broth, 1/3 cup walnuts/cashews, 2 tbsp sage, 1 cup spinach, 1/2 cup applesauce, 1/2 yellow onion, 2 garlic cloves, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/8 tsp turmeric, & 1/8 tsp ginger.
  • Prepare & chop your ingredients: chop the onion, mince the garlic, chop the walnuts/cashews, Chiffonade the sage, & Chiffonade the spinach (see photo above).
  • Preheat oven to 400F. Drizzle squash with 1 tbsp olive oil and place face down on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 mins, until tender. (If using butternut squash, this might take 35-40 mins).

In a small pot, cook the quick-cook organic brown basmati rice (follow package instructions: bring 1 3/4 cups water to boil in sauce pan with tight fitting lid, add 1 cup rice, cover & reduce heat to a simmer, cook for 15 minutes or until water is absorbed). Remove from the heat & set aside.

In the meantime, prepare the filling. Bring quinoa and vegetable broth to a boil in a medium pot and then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook for 12-15 mins, until liquid is absorbed.

Sauté diced yellow onion and Chiffonade sage in 1.5 tbsp olive oil (or 2 tbs veggie broth) in a saucepan over medium high heat until fragrant. about 5 mins. Add cooked quinoa, cooked brown rice, chopped walnuts, applesauce, salt, pepper, cinnamon, turmeric, and ginger to the saucepan and stir to combine. Cook for 2-5 more minutes and set aside.

If desired, mix balsamic vinegar and honey together for drizzle.

Scoop spoonfuls of filling into the roasted honeynut squash. Top each squash generously, and serve the squash alongside extra stuffing. Drizzle squash with some maple-balsamic drizzle and serve immediately. Enjoy!


  • For oil-free method, simply omit the oil, and poke some holes in the squash with a fork before baking. If you want the squash to be extra tender, slightly dampen or mist the squash halves before baking.
  • If using butternut squash, the servings will be double (serving 6 people instead of 3).
  • You may wish to use dried fruit, such as: apricot, or cranberries. You could also use other fresh fruit, such as: apples, or crabapple.
  • I highly recommend the balsamic & honey drizzle! It heightens the flavors, without being overpowering.

I saved my leftover stuffing mixture, and served it over my homemade Sourdough Bread (recipe in an upcoming blog) drizzled with the delicious balsamic & honey sauce. It’s amazing!

Nutrition Facts (without stuffing):

Per Serving: 281 calories; protein 5.2g; carbohydrates 59.7g; fat 6.3g; cholesterol 15.3mg; sodium 64.9mg.

How did you modify this recipe? Please share in the comments. Thank you for sharing!

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