This butternut squash curry dish with chickpeas makes a delicious plant-based meal. Made with lite coconut milk, fire-roasted tomatoes, spinach, shallots, and spices, you will have a complete meal or a hearty side dish.
I love cooking with butternut squash. It has a creamy texture and mild flavor that easily takes on the flavors of the seasonings and other added vegetable ingredients. But make no mistake: butternut squash is the star of this recipe!
For other delicious dishes that use vegetables for the main event, try my:
- Coconut Curry Butternut Squash Soup
- Sweet Potato Brown Sugar Praline Boats
- Sweet Potato Black Bean Burgers
- Italian Stuffed Zucchini Boats
To Make this Recipe for Butternut Squash Curry with Chickpeas, You will Need:
- butternut squash
- baby spinach
- shallot – or other onion
- canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
- canned fire-roasted tomatoes
- lite coconut milk
- coconut aminos (or sub soy sauce)
- light flavored oil for roasting the squash and for sauteing the shallot. Leave out if you are eating oil-free and use a little veggie broth to saute the shallot.
- curry, cumin, cayenne, garlic powder, and salt and pepper to taste
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Tips and Tricks for Making a Delicious Butternut Squash Curry Dish:
I use canned chickpeas and canned fire-roasted tomatoes. If you want to cook your own, I don’t include directions for that, but I’m sure it would be yummy too!
I use canned lite coconut milk. I’ve made this recipe with full-fat coconut milk as well. I didn’t feel it was improved by using full-fat. The lite coconut milk is just as tasty and will not give you the added fat.
You will only be using 1/2 of the can. If you don’t want to waste the remaining coconut milk, you can pour it into a baggie or ice cube tray and freeze. Next time you make a smoothie, just throw it in!
If you are not familiar with coconut aminos, this is a very nice addition to your vegan pantry. It’s a little sweetly salty and can be used as a general seasoning over veggies and rice. I use it in my must-try Savory Tofu Crumble Recipe.
If you do not have coconut aminos, you can sub in some soy sauce. Just taste before adding in any extra salt because soy sauce will be saltier than the coconut aminos.
I use a shallot because it is the perfect size and flavor. If you would like to sub in your choice of onion, you will be using 1/2 cup chopped onion.
I have seasoned this dish to be “family-friendly” which means that the seasonings might need some adjustment for your tastes. After cooking, give a little taste and add extra curry and cumin if desired. I use sweet curry.
If you like it a little hotter, you can use a hotter spicey curry to taste.
The Butternut Squash:
This recipe uses two whole butternut squashes. Here is how to prepare and cook them:
- cut them in half lengthwise
- scoop out the seeds
- brush a little oil on the top (If eating oil-free then skip this step – the squashes just won’t brown up as well but will still be delicious.)
- Cook in a 375° oven for about an hour or until fork-tender.
- If you want to cut down on the cooking time, you can cook in the microwave for about 10 minutes first. Then cut and scoop the seeds before putting in the oven. You will still get a nicely roasted butternut squash but in half the cooking time.
- You will be scooping out some of the flesh of the butternut squash, chopping it up and adding it to the curried chickpea mixture. Ensure that the cooked butternut squash is tender enough to easily scoop out the flesh.
The Coconut Curried Chickpea Mixture:
While the butternut squash is roasting in the oven, prepare the curried chickpea mixture. (After the squash has cooked, you will add the scooped out portion of the cooked squash to the mixture.
Chop the shallot (or other onion of choice). Saute in oil (or veggie broth) until softened – about 3-5 minutes. Stir in the seasonings and continue sauteing for a short minute until fragrant.
Add in the fire-roasted tomatoes, coconut milk, and cornstarch. Continue cooking till bubbly and slightly thickened.
Add in the baby spinach and give a stir. It will wilt as the mixture is sitting.
Finishing and Serving the Chickpea and Butternut Squash Curry:
After the butternut squash has cooked, take it about of the oven and scoop out some of the flesh around the “holes” widening and slightly enlarging them. Chop the extra flesh into small pieces and add to the curries chickpea mixture. Reheat for a couple of minutes or until it is the best temperature for serving.
Spoon the mixture onto the butternut squash halves and serve immediately. This will serve four. If you want to save some for later, it’s better to just scoop out the flesh and add to the chickpea mixture. Seal tightly and use within 5 days.
The Recipe For Butternut Squash Curry with Chickpeas:
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Butternut Squash Curry with Chickpeas
- 2 butternut squash
- 1 teaspoon oil more for sauteing
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 cup shallot, chopped can sub in other onion
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 16 ounce chickpeas canned, drained
- 14.5 ounce fire roasted tomatoes NOT drained
- 3/4 cup lite coconut milk 1/2 can
- 1 Tablespoon coconut aminos can sub soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 1/2 - 2 cups baby spinach to taste
- salt and pepper to taste
Roasted Butternut Squash
- Preheat oven to 375°
- Cut each butternut squash lengthwise - so four halves total.
- Scoop out the seeds
- Brush the tops with oil (or skip), garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
- Roast for 60 minutes or until fork-tender when poked. The flesh should be easy enough to scoop.
- Widen to "holes" slightly by scooping out the flesh around them. Chop the extra scooped flesh and add to the chickpea mixture (below).
Curried Chickpea Mixture
- Chop shallot (or other onion). Saute for 3-5 minutes in oil (or veggie broth) for 3-5 minutes or until softened.
- Add in curry, cumin, and cayenne and continue cooking for about 1 minute or until fragrant.
- Add canned (drained) chickpeas, undrained fire-roasted tomatoes, lite coconut milk, coconut aminos, and cornstarch. Cook until slightly thickened and bubbly.
- Taste and add in salt, pepper, and adjust other seasonings to taste.
- Add in the baby spinach and stir. It should wilt enough when sitting in the heated mixture. Set aside.
- After the butternut squash has cooked, scoop out a little of the flesh around the holes, chop and add to the chickpea mixture.
- Reheat for a couple of minutes or until temperature is warm enough to enjoy.
- Spoon mixture into the openings of the butternut squash and serve. Enjoy!