Chipotle Glazed Squash and Sweet Potato Skewers

I’ve been on board the Food Matters Project train since just about the beginning of this year.  It escapes me how I learned of it but I do remember one thing—when I saw the first posts I was hooked.  The first week of the FMP saw its contributors making chipotle-glazed squash skewers and since that week (which I missed) I have wanted to make them, in large part due to the drool-worthy photos Sarah posted on her blog, 20 Something Cupcakes, to kick off the project.

Lucky for me, this week was a ‘wild card’ week, where FMP’ers will have the opportunity to go back and choose a recipe they missed posting.  I’ve only missed a few (yes, I am patting myself on the back for being dedicated!) so I had to choose from these skewers, cabernet sorbet, or a tomato tart.  This was, hands down, my choice.  I had everything I needed and, like I said, I’ve been thinking about making them since January.

Now, just because I had everything I needed it doesn’t mean I had the best ingredients to work with.  I had a butternut squash I had been hanging onto for a few months.  I think I actually stopped ‘seeing’ it, sitting in the fruit bowl, just like I have stopped ‘seeing’ the one mismatched drawer pull in my kitchen that I cannot remove from the drawer without sawing off the front of the drawer.  Now, this squash looked pretty durned normal from the outside so no issues there.  But when I opened that sucker up, I realized that things had been happening on the inside.  The squash was still okay but instead of a great deal of flesh with some strings and seeds in the center, I found about 50% flesh, 45% stringy stuff, and 5% seeds.  Oops!  Lesson learned…squash changes over time.  Well, I was still able to salvage quite a bit but couldn’t make 1-inch cubes out of the squash so cut it into long strips, which were impossible to skewer.  Because I wanted the skewer effect, I also cubed some sweet potato and a little bit of extra-firm tofu (I love the China Rose brand—wonderful texture and taste).  The prettiest of the three by far was the butternut squash—you can’t beat the color.  All went into the oven on a large sheet tray.

40 minutes later, the result was a hodgepodge of smoky-sweet veggies and tofu.  Good on their own or (as I found out later–see photo below) tossed into a salad.  After the first round of snacking, I took leftover quinoa, black beans, and corn from the fridge and tossed together a quick salad, adding some thinly shredded spinach for a pretty pop of color.

One note:  next time I make this (and there will be a next time) I will add some more honey.  I felt it needed a little more sweet to balance the heat.  Not that the recipe didn’t yield great results…I can just picture it being even better like that!

Chipotle-Glazed Squash Skewers

{total time}: 55 mins; {serves}: 4 – 8

Sweet, starchy winter squash takes well to the smoky heat of chipotle chiles, especially when you concentrate the flavors by roasting slowly. Use any winter squash here, or even sweet potatoes – in either case, these kebabs are drop-dead gorgeous.

  •  1 1/2 pounds butternut or other winter squash (you can also use sweet potatoes), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch cubes
  •  1/4 cup olive oil, plus some greasing for the pan
  •  1 or 2 canned chipotle chiles, chopped, with 2 tablespoons adobo sauce
  •  1 tablespoon minced garlic
  •  1 tablespoon honey
  •  Salt and black pepper
  •  Lime wedges, optional
  •  Chopped fresh cilantro, optional

1.  If you’re using wooden skewers, soak them in water for 20 – 30 minutes. Heat the oven to 300 degrees F. Grease a large rimmed baking sheet or roasting pan with oil. Thread the squash tightly on 8 to 12 wooden or metal skewers and put them in the roasting pan.

2.  Combine the 1/4 cup oil, 1 chipotle chile, the adobo sauce, garlic, honey, and some salt and pepper in a small bowl. (A mortar and pestle is ideal here.) Taste and add another chile if you like.

3.  Brush the glaze evenly over the squash skewers and roast for 45 to 60 minutes, turning once or twice and basting with any pan juices. When the squash is tender and deeply colored, remove the skewers from the oven. Serve hot or at room temperature with lime wedges and cilantro if you like.


  1. I’m so glad you liked them, Aura! Can’t wait for butternut to come back…

  2. These look really good Aura! We had a monster growth last year of butternut squash and stored a lot in the wine cellar. I think we had over 100. What we found out is that the sugars concentrated over the months and they were almost too sweet. We still have about 20 down there and are finally ready to cook some again. I’ll be curious to see what they are like on the inside.

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