It's fall and people tend to crave the comforts of warm food.  It's natural, but we don't need to turn to cheesy casseroles and loads of pie for the effect.  The comfort of a warm meal or sweet treat can be created with a wonderful fall star, Butternut Squash.  Read on for some great ideas to incorporate butternut squash into any meal of the day.


1.  Saute with Pasta--Any short pasta with butternut squash, kale, sage and toasted walnuts is a wonderful combination.


2.  Bake it into a Pie--Use pureed squash as a replacement to the canned pumpkin.  Go crustless and you have a simple butternut squash custard.


3.  Puree it in a Shake--It will be creamier than pumpkin and just as good!  Try combining butternut squash puree with Vanilla Shakeology.


4.  Make Soup--Take it a step up from a basic puree by adding vegetable stock

Click to see Kelly demonstrate how to prep a butternut squash!

to create a soup so rich and comforting there's no need for added fat.  The squash itself is enough.


5.  Toss it in a Salad--Warm, just-tender chunks of sweet squash make a wonderful addition for a spicy arugula salad and fall is the perfect time for cold weather-loving greens like arugula, spinach, baby bok choy and kale.


6.  Make a Dip--Squash makes a great appetizer!  Blend pureed squash with 1/3 cup low-fat cream cheese and 1/4 cup of grated parmesan cheese.  Warm in the oven for 15 minutes.


7.  Simply Roast It--And of course you can just roast the squash and enjoy it with a little salt and pepper, or roast alongside another vegetable, as it is here in my recipe of the week!

This recipe was created for a lunch hiking trip where I hosted Adventure Club participants on a 5 mile hike through Chippewa Hills in Ossineke.  It was a perfect day, the colors were beautiful and the sun was out.  Adventure clubs were always fun, a little nerve racking and always delicious.  You would not expect cooking out in nature to be described as gourmet, ever, but really, for a wrap these are pretty much spot on.  Roasted root vegetables offer a complex base, wine simmered pears give tang and tart, caramelized onions show off their sweet side and heady blue cheese gives that amazing umami flavor essential for delish food.  Take these little wraps with you on your next adventure.  The list of ingredients is longer, but don't let that be a deterrent. These wraps can be made ahead of time (even frozen), wrapped in foil and reheated, perhaps on a camp grill like we did back in the woods for a day of adventure.  Enjoy.

Ro0t Vegetable Roll-Ups



-1 small rutabaga, diced

-1 small butternut squash, diced

-3 large carrots, peeled and diced

-1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced

-1 large sweet onion, chopped

-2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced

-4 TBSP olive oil

-4 TBSP good balsamic vinegar


-4 Bosc pears, peeled

-1 bottle of dark red wine (a blend or table red are my favorites to use)

-1 sprinkle or nutmeg


-2 large sweet onions, sliced into rings

-2 TBSP olive oil

-1 TBSP raw sugar

-salt and pepper


-4 to 6 oz of blue cheese crumbled, goat cheese or sharp cheddar (your choice)

-8, 8-inch whole wheat tortilla shells



Heat oven to 400.  Mix all root vegetables, onion, garlic, olive oil and balsamic vinegar in a roaster.  Add 1/4 cup of cold water and salt and pepper to taste into pot and roast uncovered for 45 to 60 minutes until tender.


Peel Bosc pears and place standing into a sauce pot with the wine, 1 cup of water and nutmeg.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered until liquid is evaporated.


Place sliced onions, olive oil, raw sugar and a pinch of salt in a saute pan.  Bring to a simmer; reduce heat to low and cook partially covered until caramelized.


Combine all room temperature ingredients into a tortilla, wrap up in foil and place on the grill or under your broiler.  Heat on both sides for three to five minutes and enjoy!

Kelly Bowlin
Kelly Bowlin
Administration Director & BAC Foodie :) 
Bay Athletic Club
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