Food for Fuel: Another Stuffed Acorn Squash…This Time with Pesto!

December 4, 2008 at 10:03 am | Posted in Food, Nutrition, Pasta, Poultry, Rice, Quinoa, and Other Grains | 7 Comments

Well, the wind turned cold again last night and got strong and scary. I almost made soup because it was a soup kind of night, but I had a big bunch of cilantro going bad on me in the crisper. This always happens to me–I buy cilantro for a recipe, use a little, and then the rest goes bad. Not this time! I used this recipe for cilantro pesto, chosen for its simplicity and lower amounts of oil. I added a little (ok, quite a bit) jarred minced garlic for some more flavor. It turned out well and the walnuts and olive oil give me those healthy, unsaturated fats that I need this week!


I already planned to mix the pesto with quinoa, but when the weather gets colder and I have more time, I like to make dishes that take a long time in the oven and make the house nice and warm. I did this by baking a sweet potato on Tuesday, and last night I baked an acorn squash to stuff with my quinoa/pesto mixture. I baked it at 375* for about 50 minutes. I didn’t have much quinoa left, so I added wheatberries. I also added chicken breast (grilled quickly on my George Foreman), black beans, red and green bell pepper, mushrooms, onion, and tomato. I scooped the mixture into the acorn squash halves, topped them with feta cheese, and returned them to the oven for less than 10 more minutes.


Yum! I liked all the different flavors present in this dish. Sometimes I eat the skin of the acorn squash, but it tasted weird to me last night and I didn’t. The flesh, however, was moist and tender and perfect.

Nutrition of this Meal

This meal contains 14 ingredients from the World’s Healthiest Foods list:

  • Bell peppers
  • Garlic
  • Mushrooms
  • Onions
  • Winter squash
  • Tomatoes
  • Low-fat cheese
  • Black beans
  • Chicken
  • Olive oil
  • Walnuts
  • Quinoa
  • Whole wheat
  • Cilantro


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  1. That looks so good… clean-up after all of that must have been daunting. Though at least you were properly fueled for it 🙂

  2. I have the same cilantro issue! What a great solution. You are really outdoing yourself with the healthy fuel this week– it’s fun to watch!

  3. That looks so good – and reminded me that I have two acorn squashes sitting in my kitchen waiting to be devoured. I guess I know what dinner will be tonight!! 🙂

  4. i get so intimidated by messy appliances. i only have 1 blender and i use it for smoothies so i have yet to make my own hummus or pesto. i also don’t have a dishwasher, really wish i did. it actually uses less water in the long run than washing by hand, or so i’ve been told. i guess if you are a really good handwasher it’s a diff story.

  5. Yes, the kitchen was a mess!
    Lacey, I would die without a dishwasher.

  6. I just love pesto, but I’ve never tried with cilantro. Good idea!

  7. I just love pesto, but I’ve never tried with cilantro. Good idea!

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