Easy Cumin Roasted Butternut Squash

Paleo Cumin Roasted Butternut Squash Recipe via Worthy Pause

Well, here you go — my un-recipe recipe for butternut squash.

Even though butternut squash is a very versatile gourd, I rarely do anything except dice it and roast it with a sprinkle of this and a sprinkle of that. This = cumin. That = salt.

Cumin is the little black dress of spices. Because it's used liberally in so many cuisines around the world, it pairs well with anything. And I especially love how the subtle sweetness of the squash complements spicy flavors, from grilled poblano chicken to shrimp curries. But again, this recipe is meant to taste good with whatever else you feel like eating.

Paleo Cumin Roasted Butternut Squash Recipe via Worthy Pause

The Health Benefits of Butternut Squash

This stuff is pretty healthy! Among other nutrients, it's loaded with potassium (crucial for, like, everything), Vitamin A (eyesight-assistant), Vitamin C (immuno-booster). It's also considered anti-inflammatory, and it's very filling due to the high fiber content.

How long does butternut squash last?

A whole butternut squash has the longest shelf-life ever — up to three months sitting on the counter. It's almost like a canned good! Once you peel and cut it though, all bets are off. You'll want to cook it within a couple of days.

How to Peel and Prepare a Butternut Squash

  1. Cut off the ends.
  2. Peel it carefully and thoroughly. Use whatever you use to peel potatoes. There's a tough white layer (almost like a rind) between the skin and the meat. You want to get rid of that layer too.
  3. Slice it in half, lengthwise.
  4. Scrape out all the seeds and strings out using a spoon. 
  5. Cut the squash into your desired shapes. For this recipe, that's little ~1-inch cubes.

Okay, now time for the recipe. Let's cook.

P.S. If you like squash, you might want to try this Paleo Curry-Sage Butternut Squash Soup on for size. It's made with canned squash puree (for ease), but you could also start by roasting your own like this.

Paleo Cumin Roasted Butternut Squash Recipe via Worthy Pause

Easy Cumin Roasted Butternut Squash

paleo, whole30-friendly, gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian | serves 4


  • 1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into ~1-inch cubes
  • ~2 T olive oil
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • salt, to taste
  • ~1 tsp paprika (optional)
  • ~1 tsp chili powder (optional)
  • a squeeze of lemon or lime juice (optional)
  • fresh cilantro and/or green onions (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment or foil.
  3. Toss the cubed squash with olive oil, cumin, paprika, chili powder and a big pinch of salt.
  4. Spread in a single layer on the baking sheet.
  5. Roast for 30 minutes, stirring once after 15 minutes.
  6. Sprinkle with more salt if needed. Top with lemon or lime juice, cilantro and green onions.


  • Ha, I realize half of the ingredients are listed as optional and that's weird, but this recipe really is THAT flexible. If you don't have paprika or chili powder on hand, I don't want you to not make this. Same with the citrus and the fresh toppings. Use parsley if you don't like cilantro. Or use nothing. Like I said before, baked squash tastes totally great with just cumin and salt.
  • I sometimes eat this topped with bacon pieces. Maybe you want to do that too? Your call.
  • This makes a really delicious breakfast hash. I sometimes reserve a portion of leftovers to eat in the morning with some stir-fried veggies and an egg on top.