Here’s a step-by-step guide for how to cook Instant Pot Acorn Squash and transform it into delicious acorn squash puree. Cook the squash whole and then slice it easily to make the puree.

whole acorn squash inside of an instant pot

Recipe Highlights

  • By cooking the squash whole in the pressure cooker, you can slice through its thick skin very easily and safely. If you don’t cook it in the Instant Pot, you’ll have a very hard time cutting it, even with a sharp knife.
  • Acorn squash is an under-appreciated winter squash (it is also known as pepper squash or Des Moise squash). It is flavorful and delicious, and can be served in a variety of ways.
  • Like most squashes, acorn squash is incredibly high in nutrition. The flesh is usually light yellow. Its texture is similar to that of a pumpkin or other winter squashes, but it has a slightly nuttier flavor.

Picking a Good Squash

  • For the best acorn squash, buy one during the season (roughly October through May in North America). Acorn squash is considered a winter squash.
  • Most acorn squashes weigh between 1-2 pounds. However, if you plan to cook your squash in the Instant Pot, then you’ll need to make sure it is not wider in size than 8 inches for a 6-quart pressure cooker.
  • A quality acorn squash should have a smooth outer skin with no blemishes or soft spots.
  • The color should be a dark green on the outside (the inside will be yellow).

Recipe Steps

Step One

Place a whole, uncut acorn squash into the steamer basket of the Instant Pot with one cup of water. Lock on the lid and set the time to 10 minutes at high pressure.

cooked whole acorn squash inside a pressure cooker

When the cooking time is up, carefully quick release the pressure. Remove the lid and use tongs to remove the squash to a bowl or cutting board.

Step Two

After the cooked squash has cooled for a few minutes, cut the acorn squash down the middle. Do your best to scoop out the seeds.

acorn squash cut in half with seeds

Then, use tongs to place the two halves of the squash back in the Instant Pot. Add another 1/2 cup of water to the bottom of the pot.

acorn squash cut in half with seeds scooped out

Step Three

Lock the lid back on the Instant Pot and set the time for 10 more minutes at high pressure. Then, when the cooking time is up, use the quick release again to get rid of the remaining pressure. Remove the lid and transfer the cooked squash to a cutting board.

instant pot acorn squash cut in half

Use a spoon to scoop out the flesh of the acorn squash. You can discard the skin, or at it to the puree. I chose to just use the flesh.

labeled photo with ingredients for instant pot acorn squash

Step Four

Lastly, add the cooked acorn squash flesh to a bowl and stir in your choice of butter, ghee, olive oil, or coconut oil, plus some salt, black pepper, and ground cinnamon. Some people also like to add a tablespoon or two of brown sugar.

This dish makes an excellent side dish that is high in vitamin C. Serve hot.

Please see the recipe card at the end of this post for exact measurements.

cooked acorn squash puree served in a bowl

Top Tips

  • Pick a small to medium-sized acorn squash to make sure it will fit inside your pressure cooker pot. Ideally your squash will be less than 8-inches in length to fit inside a 6-quart Instant Pot.
  • Serve immediately or store the cooked squash in a bowl with an air-tight lid in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • You can also blend your cooked acorn squash puree with broth to make soup, or freeze it into cubes and add it to a smoothie.

FAQs

Do I need to poke holes in the acorn squash to keep it from exploding?

No, you do not need to poke holes in the squash prior to cooking it in the pressure cooker. If you cook the squash in a regular oven, though, you will need to cut it in half prior to cooking it.

Can I cook more than one acorn squash at a time?

Yes, as long as both squashes fit in the pot below the “max” line.

Can I cook acorn squash in the regular oven instead of an electric pressure cooker?

Yes, but you’ll need to place it on a baking sheet and cut holes in the squash until it is soft enough to slice open.

Other Easy Instant Pot Recipes You May Like

Don’t miss my round-up of the best Instant Pot Vegan recipes.

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acorn squash cut in half in instant pot

Instant Pot Acorn Squash


Description

Here’s a step-by-step guide for how to cook Instant Pot Acorn Squash and transform it into delicious acorn squash puree. Cook the squash whole and then slice it easily to make the puree. This is a delicious autumn recipe that is gluten-free and vegetarian.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 acorn squash
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons ghee, butter, or coconut oil (for vegan or dairy-free diets, use vegan butter or coconut oil)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Place a whole, uncut acorn squash into the steamer basket of the Instant Pot with one cup of water. Lock on the lid and set the time to 10 minutes at high pressure.
  2. When the cooking time is up, carefully quick release the pressure. Remove the lid and use tongs to remove the squash to a bowl or cutting board.
  3. After the cooked squash has cooled for a few minutes, cut the squash down the middle. Do your best to scoop out the seeds. Then, use tongs to place the two halves of the squash back in the Instant Pot. Add another 1/2 cup of water to the bottom of the pot.
  4. Lock the lid back on the Instant Pot and set the time for 10 more minutes at high pressure. Then, when the cooking time is up, use the quick release again to get rid of the pressure. Remove the lid and transfer the cooked squash to a cutting board.
  5. Use a spoon to scoop out the flesh of the acorn squash. You can discard the skin, or at it to the puree. I chose to just use the flesh.
  6. Lastly, add the cooked acorn squash flesh to a bowl and stir in your choice of butter, ghee, or coconut oil, plus some salt, pepper, and ground cinnamon. Serve hot.

Notes

  1. For dairy sensitivities, use ghee or coconut oil instead of butter. For dairy allergies, use coconut oil. Vegans should also use coconut oil, coconut butter, or vegan butter.
  2. Store any leftovers in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat before serving.
  • Category: Side dish
  • Method: Instant Pot pressure cooker
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: how to cook an acorn squash in pressure cooker, acorn squash puree

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