Colorado Squash

Colorado Squash

Maura Bennett
Maura Bennett

This month, the Colorado Department of Agriculture is shining the light on Colorado-grown butternut squash in a recipe for the holidays or any day.

CDA Business Development Specialist Danielle Trotta says Chef Jason Morse of 5280 Culinary offered a recipe for Candied Butternut Squash.

Trotta: “Colorado does offer the perfect growing season for squash. And it is readily available in your grocery store.”

Colorado’s climate provides the vine plants the needed long, warm growing season of at least 50 to 65 days.

Uncooked winter squash keeps very well for weeks, and even months, in the refrigerator according to the Colorado Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association. Cooked winter squash freezes well and can be used in recipes throughout the year.


Trotta: “We thought that this would be a perfect add on to the Thanksgiving Day dinner table and a fun way to get a healthy vegetable in there and not have to add too much to it. It’s sweet and savory at the same time. We thought it would go great for most people’s Thanksgiving dinner.


Candied Butternut Squash

Serves 6-8 People

Prep time: 15 Minutes | Cook time: 30-45 minutes

1 medium butternut squash peeled and cut into large pieces

3 Tbs. avocado or vegetable oil

to taste: Salt, Pepper, BBQ rub

1/2 stick melted butter

1/4 cup Maple syrup

1 Tbs. Vanilla extract

1 cup dark brown sugar

To taste: Ground cinnamon, ground allspice

12 square marshmallows

Prep Directions:

Follow all prep instructions in the prep notes and store all prepped food in containers until needed

Cooking Directions:

Turn on the oven to 400˚. While the oven is heating, add a 10” cast iron skillet.

In a large mixing bowl add the large diced butternut squash pieces. Add the oil, salt, pepper, and BBQ rub and mix well.

Once the oven is hot, carefully add the seasoned squash to the skillet and cook at 400˚ for 15-20 minutes or until pieces are tender. Stir if needed to help caramelize all sides of the pieces.

While the squash is cooking mix together the butter, syrup, vanilla, sugar, cinnamon, and allspice.

Once the pieces are tender, carefully pour the butter mixture over them and mix well.

Cook at 400˚ for another 10 minutes to reduce the sauce.

Carefully top the butternut pieces with the marshmallows and cook for 5-7 minutes or until the marshmallows are cooked to your preference.


Butternut squash is also a nutritionally dense crop. It is high in vitamins A, B6, and C, folate, magnesium, fiber, riboflavin, phosphorus, and potassium.

You can find the recipe at and here at Colorado Ag Today.

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