Last updated: April 2023
Last weekend, while grocery shopping, I was searching for cubed sweet potatoes, but instead I ended up with cubed butternut squash. I often purchase pre-prepped vegetables (and sometimes fruit) to save time. I was uncertain how my family would respond to the new vegetable; to my delight the squash was a huge success! In a moment of excitement, I decided to share my recipe creation with the Type2Diabetes.com community.
What is butternut squash?
- Butternut squash is technically a fruit, as it contains seeds, but is more traditionally served as a vegetable.
- Squash belongs to the Cucurbitaceaeplant family (gourd family), which also includes cucumbers, pumpkins, and melons.
- Squash is slightly sweet with a nutty flavor. It has been described as a good cross between a pumpkin and sweet potato.
- Squash has been sold commercially since 1944 and is now readily available at most grocery stores.
A lower carb starchy vegetable
- Squash has often been labeled, along with potatoes and sweet potatoes, as a “starchy" vegetable. However, by comparison butternut squash has nearly 40 percent less carbohydrates than potatoes and sweet potatoes. This makes squash a great alternative for those following a lower carb diet.
Benefits for people with type 2 diabetes
- Butternut squash gets bonus points for being rich in antioxidants, Vitamin A and Vitamin C.
- “Antioxidants protect the body from damage caused by harmful molecules called free radicals. Many experts believe this damage is a factor in the development of blood vessel disease, cancer, and other conditions.” 1
- According to researchers, Bajaj and Khan, “Hyperglycemia promotes auto-oxidation of glucose to form free radicals.”2
- Learn more about antioxidants and free radicals
- Butternut squash is a good source of dietary fiber. It has 3 grams of dietary fiber per 1 cup serving.
- Fiber has a number of health benefits; one of which is the ability to slow down the absorption of other digestible carbs, thus resulting in less of a blood sugar spike following a meal or snack.
- Learn more about dietary fiber
Healthy butternut squash recipe
- 3 cups butternut squash, cubed
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Place cubed butternut squash on paper towel for approximately 5 minutes. This will help soak up extra moisture.
- Combine butternut squash, olive oil, salt, pepper, and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl.
- Spread butternut squash evenly on a large baking sheet.
- Roast squash in oven, at 400 degree Fahrenheit, for 30 minutes.
- Once out of the oven, drizzle butternut squash with balsamic vinegar.
- Serve immediately.
Nutrition (per ½ cup serving)
- Calories: 83
- Carb: 11 g
- Fiber: 3 g
- Protein: 1 g
- Fat: 5 g
- Sodium: 199 mg
Do you have a favorite squash recipe? Please share your creations with the Type2Diabetes.com community!
This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Type2Diabetes.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.
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