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Butternut Squash Is The Secret To Veggie Sandwiches With Some Heft

a squash sandwich alongside butternut squash
a squash sandwich alongside butternut squash - Static Media/Shutterstock

Butternut squash is a celebrated fall and winter vegetable thanks to its sweet, nutty flavor, creamy texture, and beautiful bright orange color. It is a shame then, that it is so often relegated to familiar recipes like butternut squash soup and rich butternut squash mac and cheese. The truth is, this versatile gourd has a lot to offer in many dishes, even unexpected ones like sandwiches.

This vegetable can pack a punch when introduced to your usual sandwich stack. Butternut squash has an earthy and delicate flavor, a smooth and velvety texture, and a lot of moisture, all of which are important factors in sandwich-making. The most important contribution it makes, however, is that of making a sandwich — especially a vegetarian one — hearty and filling. Not only does the squash offer some bulk to the overall mouthfeel of the sandwich, but it also is loaded with fiber that will make you feel satisfied for longer than some lighter vegetables.

Read more: 30 Healthy Snack Ideas That Won't Ruin Your Diet

How To Prepare Butternut Squash For Sandwiches

sliced butternut squash
sliced butternut squash - itor/Shutterstock

The best way to cook butternut squash for sandwiches is by roasting it. Start by cutting the gourd into half-moon slices about one-quarter to one-half of an inch thick. You can leave the skin on or take it off, depending on your preferences. Toss the slices in olive oil and any other desired seasonings then lay them out in a single layer on a sheet pan. Bake at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes or until fork tender. Let cool slightly before adding to your sandwich and enjoying.

Butternut squash can easily pivot between sweet and savory depending on how it is seasoned. This allows you to tailor its flavor to best fit your sandwich-making plans. For a classic, autumnal taste, drizzle the squash with maple syrup and perhaps even a pinch of cinnamon, or go for a more smoky, umami taste by tossing it in cumin and chili powder. What else you include in your sandwich stack will also impact that final flavor: We recommend trying brie, spinach, and cranberry jam for a Thanksgiving-inspired sandwich, or caramelized onions and arugula for a lighter snack.

Read the original article on Tasting Table.