Mustardy Kale and Butternut Squash

Mustardy Kale and Butternut Squash | Cookie Monster Cooking

Let’s chat about a simple side dish today.  This mustardy kale and butternut squash quickly became one of my very favorite sides last fall.  We ate it pretty often for quite a few months, but then forgot about it once all the wonderful summer produce came along.  But it’s time to unforget.  I’ve already made this twice so far in the last month.  It’s quick, it’s simple (did I mention it all cooks in one pot?) and full of good for you veggies.  And now it’s time for you to make it too.

Mustardy Kale and Butternut Squash | Cookie Monster Cooking

This dish makes a great side for dinner or can be eaten alone for lunch.  The mustard makes it a little special (although it’s not super overpowering) and the red pepper flakes give it a little kick.  The chopped walnuts add some crunch and you get some saltiness from the cheese.  A perfect side dish in my book.

Mustardy Kale and Butternut Squash | Cookie Monster Cooking

Plus it’s nice and healthy.  Just what you need when you’ve been eating a few too many apple or pumpkin treats this time of the year.

Mustardy Kale and Butternut Squash
Yield: about 4 servings as a side dish
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small (2 pound) butternut squash, seeded and cut into ¾ inch pieces
  • 10 cups chopped kale
  • 1 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ½ cup walnuts, chopped
  • ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  1. Set a stockpot or dutch-oven over medium heat. Add in the olive oil. When hot, add in the butternut squash chunks and cook for about 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until it begins to soften. Add in the kale, broth, mustard, salt and red pepper flakes and cook for about 8 to 10 minutes longer, stirring occasionally, until the veggies are tender.
  2. Turn off the heat and stir in the walnuts and cheese.
If you’re feeling lazy, you can use about 4 cups of the pre-cut chunks of butternut squash that you can find at the grocery store.

1 medium bunch of kale should give you the 10 cups. Remove the thick stems and then cut/tear the leaves into bite-sized pieces.

Adapted from Erin’s Food Files. Originally from Real Simple.


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  1. says

    My daughter and I will be eating this as a main dish and my husband can have it as a side. :) I love the sound of all the flavors and textures, Ashley! I will need to substitute something for the walnuts (allergies) but I don’t want to give up the crunch. How about pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds?

  2. says

    This kale-butternut squash combo looks fantastic! We’re always getting tons of kale from our CSA, and I needed a few new ideas. This will definitely be something we try. I can’t wait to try pairing it with butternut squash (another of my fall favorites!)

  3. says

    Ooh! This would make a wonderful lunch, wouldn’t it? Or a side. I love recipes that can go either way. Thank you for sharing. We all need more kale in our life, don’t we?

    • Ashley says

      I would definitely eat this for dinner too – it’s my husband who will only consider it enough for a side! haha

  4. says

    I’ve just discovered butternut squash recently and now I think I’m a bit addicted to it haha. This looks like a wonderful recipe to try and I’m definitely loving the walnuts and cheese addition. What a perfect side dish :)

  5. says

    I love kale; I love butternut squash; I’m sold! Ashley this looks like a perfect side fish for any autumn meal, and the kale at the farmers’ market has looked so good the past few weeks; I’ll have to try this for sure!

  6. says

    Ah, a nice way to balance things with all of those delicious apple treats! 😉
    Brandon would love this recipe. He is a mustard and red pepper freak. I, on the other hand, am a little funny about mustard- sometimes I like it, sometimes I don’t. But it looks pretty awesome in this dish with the kale, parm, and walnuts. Yum!
    I’ll have to pin this for a future dinner!

  7. says

    This is exactly the type of food I want to eat all the time now and try to make time to do. Love the combo and the walnuts are top sound perfect with it. Thanks for the inspiration! I think it’s time for me to get another butternut squash…

  8. says

    Mmmm…that dish has such bright and vibrant colors. Amidst all the pumpkin goodies I’ve been making lately, I did make a butternut squash soup last week. Not to brag, but it was pretty much the best ever (and my hubby can vouch for that…lol). Love your blog, by the way!

  9. says

    This looks like such a great fall veggie dish Ashley :) I love kale and butternut squash and love that this combines them both. Simple and healthy – love this perfect side dish!

  10. says

    I could definitely eat this for dinner. I’ve been looking for some healthy vegetarian recipes that are WARM because I am getting way sick of salads since the temperatures have gotten cooler. This one looks so perfect, thank you!! Pinned

  11. says

    Butternut squash is one of my favorite fall veggies. I tend to buy the pre-cut ones at the store because sometimes they’re so hard to cut into. This dish sounds amazing and I could definitely eat it all on its own for lunch!

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