The perfect bridge between summer and autumn, delicious grilled acorn squash is seasoned to perfection with a cinnamon-and-nutmeg butter, then finished off with a drizzle of maple syrup and a sprinkle of toasted pumpkin seeds. Tender, sweet, and savory, this easy squash recipe is ready to eat in less than 10 minutes!
What Makes This Recipe So Good
- Grilling acorn squash is perfect when you’re not quite ready to say goodbye to summer but you’re still getting excited for fall flavors! When all the different varieties of squash start to show up at the grocery stores, you know it’s almost time for pumpkin season. Odds are good, though, that despite the seasonal selection, it’s still full-on summer, with blistering sunshine and 90°F temps. Since we’re still grilling well into September around here, why not throw some acorn squash on the grill, too?
- This recipe is incredibly flavorful! The acorn squash is seasoned with a mouth-watering cinnamon-and-nutmeg butter, and then it’s topped with a drizzle of maple syrup and a dusting of toasted pumpkin seeds. On top of all the flavors from the ingredients, the grill gives the squash an amazing smokiness you don’t get with other cooking methods. (check out this super easy recipe to cook the pumpkin seeds in the air fryer). The squash turns out tender, sweet and savory with grilled and char flavors.
- You may be able to find already-toasted pumpkin seeds at your grocery store, but if not, don’t worry. Toasting them yourself is super easy! You can pop them in the oven, like we do in our pumpkin seed butter recipe, or you can use the air fryer, like we did over at 40 Aprons.
- Don’t let the acorn squash intimidate you. Cutting it is easier than you think! You’ll just need a really sharp knife, and a large spoon or ice cream scoop to take out the seeds. Start by carefully cutting the squash in half, then scoop out the innards. From there, cut each half in half, and then cut each quarter into half-moon slices that are roughly a ½-inch thick. The thinner the slices, the faster they’ll cook, but don’t go too thin – you don’t want to burn them.
- You might be wondering, “is acorn squash skin edible?”, and I’m here to tell you – yes. Yes, it is. Whether grilled or some other method, acorn squash skin gets super soft and tender as it cooks, making it super easy to eat with a fork. If you don’t want to eat it, though, you don’t have to. The meat of the squash will separate from the skin nicely after it’s cooked.
More Hot-Off-the-Grill Recipes
- Grilled Chicken And Rice
- Foil-Wrapped Grilled Asparagus
- Grilled Broccolini
- Grilled Mango With Chili-Lime Salt
- Mesquite Grilled Chicken
- 15-Minute Grilled Mahi Mahi
- Grill gas or charcoal
- Large, microwave-safe bowl
- Preheat grill to medium heat, approximately 350° to 375° Fahrenheit.
- Once grill is preheated, melt butter in large microwave-safe bowl. Add cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt to melted butter and whisk well until ingredients are fully combined.
- Add acorn squash slices to bowl with cinnamon butter and carefully toss, flip, or stir squash until completely coated with butter.
- Carefully place buttered squash slices on preheated grill grate over indirect heat. Close grill lid and cook squash 1 to 2 minutes. Open lid and carefully flip squash over, then close lid and cook another 1 to 2 minutes. Note: if squash slices are more than ½-inch-thick, repeat process, flipping as needed, until squash is fully cooked, no more than 8 minutes total per side.
- Once squash slices have visible grill marks and can be easily pierced with tines of fork, remove squash from grill and transfer to serving platter or plates. Drizzle maple syrup over grilled squash and top with toasted pumpkin seeds if desired. Serve immediately.
- To cut the acorn squash, use a sharp knife to halve each squash. Scoop the seeds out with a large metal spoon or ice cream scoop, then cut each squash half into half again, creating quarters. Carefully slice each squash quarter into half-moon shapes approximately ½-inch thick.
- To melt the butter, microwave it in 30 second increments, stirring well between each burst until the butter is completely liquid. Be careful not to burn it.
- Make it Dairy Free: Use avocado oil or a similar neutral-tasting oil instead of butter.
To Toast the Pumpkin Seeds in the Oven
- Preheat oven to 350° Fahrenheit. Rinse pumpkin seeds well, then dry seeds completely with paper towels or dish towel.
- Toss pumpkin seeds and cinnamon together in a bowl until seeds are thoroughly coated.
- Spread pumpkin seeds out across baking sheet in one even layer. Place baking sheet in oven and bake seeds 7 minutes.
- After 7 minutes, remove baking sheet from oven and stir pumpkin seeds to prevent sticking or burning. Spread pumpkin seeds back out into one even layer, then return baking sheet to oven. Bake another 7-8 minutes until seeds are golden brown.
- Remove baking sheet from oven and let pumpkin seeds cool to room temperature before serving.
To Toast the Pumpkin Seeds in the Air Fryer
- Preheat air fryer to 360° Fahrenheit. Rinse pumpkin seeds well, then dry seeds completely with paper towels or dish towel.
- Add dry pumpkin seeds to large bowl with avocado oil, salt, and pepper, or avocado oil and cinnamon. Toss or stir until pumpkin seeds are well-coated.
- Transfer pumpkin seeds to air fryer basket. Place basket in air fryer and cook 7 minutes.
- After 7 minutes, pause air fryer and remove basket. Shake basket well to toss and flip pumpkin seeds, to prevent sticking and burning. Return basket to air fryer and cook another 7-8 minutes or until pumpkin seeds are golden brown.
- Remove pumpkin seeds from air fryer and let cool to room temperature before serving.
Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes.
Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used.
To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.