Butternut Squash Curry with Mixed Grains (vegan)

Does anyone else find butternut squash incredibly awkward to prep? I feel like it doesn’t matter how I do it, it’s awkward to cut and peel. It’s worth it though, I mean butternut squash is delicious, so I can take a bit of hard work to get there. It’s really the perfect autumn vegetable, isn’t it? Cozy, healthy and delicious!

There are a million things you can do with butternut squash from risotto to pie and beyond. This curry is an easy meal – it’s almost one pot (we have to roast the squash, so one pot plus a roasting tray – sorry guys!), it feeds a group, great for meal prep, and super versatile.

We start off by roasting the butternut squash. Trust me, cutting and peeling the squash is the hardest part of the meal. So if you do it first then you get it out of the way and it’s smooth sailing from there. While it’s roasting, we’re going to make the easiest, one pot, cheat curry in the whole world. No joke the rice cooks in the pot! Sautéed onion and garlic, garam masala, cinnamon & ginger make a fragrant flavour base for this easy weeknight meal. Add in some veggie stock, coconut milk and some Glico curry (Japanese curry brick) – boil – then add in your wild rice blend and quinoa and let cook! Stir in some frozen peas, sweet apricots, raisins and almonds at the end and top with your roasted butternut squash and cilantro! It’s honestly that easy….and that delicious.

If you want to cut back on time, you can add the butternut squash at the beginning and sauté it with the onion and then let it cook with the curry. I’ve never made it that way, so it may taste different, but roasting is definitely the best if you have the time – it gets wonderful crispy edges on it. But if you’re in a pinch – cooking it with the rest of the dish will still be delicious! I don’t normally toss it in since butternut squash is a bit delicate, so I’ve always been too afraid that I would smash up the squash – but feel free to mix it in with the rest of the pot. You can also throw in your own add – ins, more vegetables, more protein – whatever your fancy is!

The Glico can be found in the Asian aisle at most grocery stores, especially here in Vancouver, and it comes in mild, medium and hot. I normally prefer the medium. If you’re into spice – use the hot and add in extra red chili flakes! Make it your own! It also freezes well and works great for meal prep lunches!

This dish is great served with cilantro, a lime wedge, extra almonds and my homemade vegan naan!

This one pot(ish) butternut squash curry is a perfect autumn meal. It’s:

  • Cozy, comforting and warm;
  • Vegan but can be switched up;
  • Versatile – add in your favourite veggies, proteins (tofu or chicken would be good!), use your favourite grains or make it spicy!;
  • Sweet apricots and raisins compliment the curry;
  • Full of fragrant, inviting spices;
  • Creamy;
  • Serves a crowd and perfect for meal prep;
  • Full of quinoa and wild rice which is high in protein;
  • Easy and quick to throw together (a lot of the time is hands off!);
  • Delicious and shareable!

Butternut Squash Curry with Mixed Grains (vegan)

Serves 6.

  • 1 small-medium butternut squash, peeled and cubed (about 1 inch cubes)
  • Olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 – 3 tsp. garam masala (or to taste)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. fresh grated ginger (or to taste)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon (or to taste)
  • 4 1/2 – 5 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • Half a brick of Glico Curry (whatever spice level you like)
  • 3 cups wild rice blend
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups frozen peas (or any other veggie you like!)
  • 1 cup of raisins
  • 1 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 3/4 cup slivered almonds, plus a bit extra for garnish
  • Red chili flakes, optional
  • Cilantro, for garnish
  • Lime wedges, for garnish
  • Salt & Pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 400 fht. Peel and cube the butternut squash and toss with olive oil, salt & pepper. Bake in the oven for around 30 – 40 minutes, until tender. The timing really depends on your oven and how big you cut your cubes!

While the squash is roasting, heat olive oil up in a large dutch oven over medium heat. Dice onion and sauté until tender and translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Add in garlic, garam masala, cinnamon, salt, pepper and ginger and cook until garlic softens and spices have toasted. Add in vegetable stock, coconut milk and half a brick of Glico curry. Let the curry brick melt and bring to a boil.

Once boiling, add in wild rice and quinoa and cover. Simmer over low on the stove until grains are cooked. This may take between 30-40 minutes again depending on your stove and how well done you like your rice cooked! If you find that the rice is still too crunchy for you and the liquid is soaking up too fast, add a 1/4 cup of stock so the pan doesn’t dry out. We want our curry to be creamy.

Once rice is almost cooked, add in peas, raisins, apricots and almonds. Stir in and let finish cooking. The raisins and chopped apricots will get all nice and plump, and the Glico curry will have thickened up your dish! If you want more spice, add in red chili flakes.

Once the rice is cooked the curry is done! Spoon into bowls and add the roasted butternut squash on top. Garnish with chopped cilantro, more almonds and a lime wedge. Serve with vegan naan and a dry white Riesling or Pinot Gris…or whatever box you have open in the fridge! 🙂

Leftovers stay good in the fridge for a couple days and this dish freezes well.

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