Chipotle Chicken Stuffed Brown Sugar Roasted Acorn Squash

Say ‘Chipotle Chicken Stuffed Brown Sugar Roasted Acorn Squash’ quickly and over and over again… OR just make and eat it! Okay, so I used this amazing looking recipe and changed it due to the size of my squash and because I was very, very hungry..but what else is new, huh. I omitted the spinach and couscous and used leftover pulled buffalo chicken (recipe below). End result, it was scruptious. I know it would be way yummier with the couscous and spinach and the chipotle chilies in adobo chicken but, alas, it was not meant to be this time. Please try the actual recipe and describe how delicious it was. Half Baked Harvest is one of my favorite blogs and Tieghan has these amazing looking dishes and desserts!

Onwards we go to squash land! Say hello to Mr. Acorn squash, which I have discovered is one of my favorite gourds. I love the texture and taste and best of all, you can fill this baby up with just about anything!

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All you have to do, ladies and gentlemen, is simply chop it in half. No wrestling, pieces flying everywhere and heaving and grunting. Take a pretty, sharp, long knife and do like so.

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Scoop out the innards and toss away.

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Next we brush the insides with a good amount of butter, some brown sugar, salt and pepper and stick in the oven for 45-50 minutes. Keep checking to see if the squash is tender as it may take less time depending on the size. I think I left mine in for 40 minutes.

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I had some leftover pulled buffalo chicken, which I had used as a topping on pizza (oh boy was that good pizza!). If its good enough for pizza it would work wonders in squash. It looked better than this after it had cooked for hours and hours in the slow cooker but this is the leftover thawed from the freezer so, it kinda lost its oomph 😦 You can make this pulled buffalo chicken and just eat it with rice or as is straight out of the slow cooker 🙂

Recipe taken from A Family Feast

Ingredients:
  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • 1 medium onion, sliced thick
  • 1 pound skinless boneless chicken breast
  • 1 pound skinless boneless chicken thighs
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons Franks original hot sauce
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
Instructions:
  1. In a large slow cooker, spray the bottom and sides of the insert. Add sliced onion and top with chicken in single layer.
  2. In a microwave safe bowl or saucepan, melt butter. Add 1 cup of hot sauce and cumin and stir to combine. Pour over chicken.
  3. Cover and set on high for four hours.
  4. When done, remove chicken and shred with two forks and place in bowl. Stir liquid from pot and add ¼ cup to shredded chicken. Add two tablespoons (or more if you like it hotter) of Frank’s hot sauce and mix well.

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Carefully remove the baked squash without burning your fingers even though you have oven mitts on.

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Fill it up, stuff it well and stick it back in the oven so the cheese melts all wonderfully on top.

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It’s looking better and better! Don’t stop here–sprinkle with breadcrumbs and butter and cilantro and prepare to be squashified!

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Enjoy to your heart’s content 🙂

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Recipe taken and adapted from Half Baked Harvest

I used one acorn squash, skipped the chicken part (used the cooked chicken I had) and whatever shredded cheese I had in the fridge. I did do the breadcrumb butter topping and cilantro.

Ingredients:

    • 2 acorn squash, halved and seeded
    • 2 tablespoons butter, softened to room temp or melted
    • 4 tablespoons brown sugar
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
    • 1/2 pound boneless skinless chicken tenders or breast
    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • 2 tablespoon lime juice
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced or grated
    • 3 whole canned chipotle chilies in adobo, minced (use less for less heat)
    • 2 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped
    • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
    • 1 teaspoon cumin
    • 2 teaspoons chili powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
    • 1/2 cup cooked couscous (may sub rice or quinoa)
    • 1 cup fresh spinach, chopped
    • 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
    • Browned Butter Bread Crumbs
    • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
    • 2 tablespoons butter

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Brush the insides of each acorn squash with 2 tablespoons melted butter and then sprinkle on the brown sugar, salt and pepper. Place in roasting pan and bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until the flesh of the squash is fork tender. Remove from the oven and swirl the liquid around the flesh of the squash and coat it well, trying to use up all the sauce/butter that formed while baking, then discard any remaining liquid.

While the squash the squash is baking also bake the chicken. Place the chicken in a baking dish and toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the chicken is no long pink in the middle. During the last 10 minutes of cooking add the chopped spinach to one side of the baking dish and toss with a drizzle of olive oil. Place back in the oven until the spinach is wilted, about 5 -10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool 10 minutes, then shred the chicken with two forks or your hands.

In a medium size bowl combine the remaining olive oil, lime juice, garlic, chipotle peppers, fresh cilantro, oregano, cumin, chili powder, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Set aside.

Mix the spinach, chicken, cooked couscous and chipotle sauce together. Now grab the acorn squash halves and stuff with the chicken mixture, top with shredded cheese and bake for 10 minutes or until the cheese has melted and acorn squash is crisp.

While the squash bakes make the brown butter bread crumbs. Heat a heavy-bottomed sauce pan over medium heat, add the butter. Melt butter over medium heat until just browned. Butter will melt, foam, and froth, then begin to brown along the bottom. Quickly remove from the stove and whisk about 30 seconds longer. Let sit 2 minutes and them stir in the Panko bread crumbs.

Remove the acorn squash from the oven and top with fresh cilantro and the browned butter bread crumbs. Devour!

The squash can be made ahead, stuffed and then refrigerated until ready to eat. Just bake as directed.

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