Kabocha Squash

One of my favorite fall/winter vegetables is the versatile and varied kabocha squash. Kabocha is the general name for several different types of Japanese winter squash. Green skinned, orange skinned, beige… small, large, tender, crisp… kabocha comes in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and colors. We get the majority of our kabocha from Mair-Taki at the University District Farmers Market. They will quite often have samples sitting out in front of their many different varieties so you can pick the one you like the best.

Preparation Methods

You can prepare kabocha squash in a wide variety of ways. Our default method is to cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds, rub the insides with a bit of olive oil and honey. We roast it in a 400 degree oven for about 30-40 minutes, depending on thickness. Basically, just roast it until it is fork tender. Remove from the oven, add a little seasoned salt and eat.

We usually buy about a 3-4 pound kabocha, which can feed us for at least two meals. On the second day, if we’ve just roasted the squash, we’ll put the leftovers in an oven proof bowl, sprinkle some brown sugar over the top, and reheat in the oven. I love mashing the kabocha flesh with the brown sugar and sometimes even a little butter if I’m feeling indulgent.

A little known fact about the kabocha squash is that the skin is totally edible. If you roast the kabocha, the skin turns very tender. I love the taste, a little more caramelized than the flesh, with a rich flavor.

You can also use kabocha in soups. Cut the squash into chunks and simmer in your stock until tender, then blend the entire soup.

Lastly, don’t throw out those seeds! Kabocha seeds are just like pumpkin seeds. Separate them from the other innards, rinse them in water, and dry them. Toss them in olive oil and spices and roast in the oven at 400 for 20-30 minutes (depending on how thick the seeds are). Salt them and enjoy!

Need some recipes for kabocha squash? Click here.

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter
Print Friendly

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Merry October 12, 2015 at 10:31 am

I am curious what dried-out squash is like? I often oven roast and the inside of squash is soft, somewhat or more, but the outer core is stiff & hard to deal with. Too much cooking or drying out or not enough cooking? I put in water, use foil on top to keep moisture in but don’t know what is wrong. Perhaps the squash is old?
Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Patricia Eddy October 12, 2015 at 9:33 pm

What temperature are you using? I also like to use some form of fat on the squash. Butter, coconut oil, or even bacon fat.

Leave a Comment

+ nine = 17