Irresistible Mashed Potato Squash Recipe!

Pumpkin and butternut squash may be the king and queen of fall vegetables but in the past few years, there’s been an explosion of other types of squash at your farmers’ markets and grocery stores. Kabocha, buttercup, delicata, acorn, and spaghetti squash are just a few of the different edible gourds you may have seen, but I have a new one for you to get excited about: mashed potato squash. As a chef and farm owner, I’d never heard of mashed potato squash until I realized it’s another name for white acorn squash.

Yes, the same acorn squash that you typically see with green skin and orange flesh is now available in a white variety that when cooked, looks a lot like mashed potatoes.

Here’s everything you need to know about white acorn squash, aka, mashed potato squash.

What Does Mashed Potato Squash Look Like?

Mashed potato squash is about 6 inches wide and 4 inches tall and weighs approximately 2 3/4 pounds. They often are confused for a small white pumpkin and in fact, many people use mashed potato squash as much for fall decoration as for eating since the thick skin allows for a long shelf life. On the inside, the flesh is a semi-spongy pale yellow and there’s pulp and seeds to be scooped out just like a pumpkin.

What Does Mashed Potato Squash Taste Like?

Mashed potato squash is starchy and slightly sweet with notes of hazelnut, black pepper, and brown butter. It’s not as sweet as a sweet potato but not as starchy as a white potato, it’s kind of like the perfect in-between.

If you’re already a squash and potato fan, mashed potato squash is an easy sell. You just might be able to serve it to your family without even knowing that you’ve switched out the starch. Or, mix it into your next batch of regular mashed potatoes to reduce the carbohydrates and add some extra nutrition.

How Do You Cook Mashed Potato Squash?

Since the skin on mashed potato squash is fairly thick and not easily peeled, it’s best to roast the squash before scooping out the flesh. To do this, trim the stem end before cutting the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and pulp, then brush the squash will a little oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast, cut side down, in a 375 degree F (190 degrees C) oven until easily pierced with the tip of a sharp knife, 35 to 45 minutes.

Once the squash is cooked, you can scoop out the flesh and mash it just like a potato. Because squash is softer than potatoes, you can just use a fork or hand masher for ease instead of a ricer. For a classic taste, go with milk (or cream), butter, and salt like in a basic mashed potatoes recipe. Or for more ideas on how to enjoy roasted mashed potato squash, check out these roasted acorn squash recipes and make the swap.

Alternately, you can use the roasted squash halves like boats and fill them with grain salads or a sausage filling, just as you would other types of squash. You can also use the mashed or puréed squash in place of pumpkin in baked goods, like pumpkin bread or other pumpkin desserts.

Is Mashed Potato Squash Healthy?

Mashed potato squash, like almost all autumn squash, is a good source of vitamin A, magnesium, and potassium, and is high in vitamin C. It also provides vitamin B6, thiamine, and dietary fiber. Compared to regular potatoes, 1 cup of mashed potato squash has 22g of carbohydrates while mashed potatoes have 35g (not counting the butter and cream), according to the USDA.

Where to Find Mashed Potato Squash

You’re most likely to find mashed potato squash at farmers’ markets, co-ops, or specialty grocery stores. Or maybe you have a neighbor that is an avid gardener who gifted you one since each plant generally produces 8-10 squash.

Now you just have to pick a favorite recipe and try it out, right after you double-check your fall decorations to see if you have one hiding in plain sight amongst your other seasonal gourds.