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An overhead view of a bowl of butternut squash stuffing with bread, celery and herbs.

Vegetarian Butternut Squash Stuffing with Apple

  • Author: Deryn Macey
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 90 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Yield: 8
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan


Tender roasted butternut squash is the perfect addition to this twist on traditional Thanksgiving stuffing. Paired with sourdough bread, apple and fresh herbs, this delicious stuffing makes a wonderful addition to holiday meals.


  • 5 cups cubed butternut squash (743 g)
  • 2 tsp oil (10 mL)
  • 89 cups cubed sourdough bread (375 g)
  • ¼ cup vegan butter (60 g)
  • 1 large white onion, chopped (2 cups, 250 g) 
  • 34 celery stalks, chopped (about 2 cups, 235 g)
  • 1 small tart apple, like granny smith, diced (1 ¼ cups, 150 g) 
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 2 tbsp fresh sage leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, stemmed and chopped (or 1 tsp dried thyme)
  • ½ cup parsley, finely chopped
  • 23 cups low-sodium vegetable broth (750 mL)
  • ¼ cup pecans, optional (30 g)
  • salt and pepper


  1. Prep the bread: The day before you make the stuffing, place the bread cubes on a sheet pan and leave them out overnight, uncovered, to dry out. Alternately, you can place them on a sheet pan and bake at 300 F for about 10-15 minutes, until bread cubes are dry at the surface, but still soft in the center.
  2. Prepare: Preheat oven to 400 F and grease a 9×13-inch casserole dish. 
  3. Roast Squash: Transfer the cubed squash to a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with 2 tsp oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Roast the squash on the middle rack of the oven for 25-30 min, stirring halfway through, until tender and golden-brown. 
  4. Saute Aromatics: Meanwhile, in a large, deep skillet, melt butter over medium heat. When the butter is melted, add onion, celery, apple and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Some vegan butters and vegetable stocks are saltier than others, so make sure to season and taste as you go. Cook for 8-10 min, stirring occasionally, until onions are tender.
  5. Add Fresh Herbs: Add sage and thyme. Cook for 1-2 min, stirring often, until fragrant. 
  6. Mix Stuffing: Add the dried bread, parsley, onion mixture and roasted squash to a large bowl or add everything to the cooking pot if it’s large enough. Add 1.5 cups of the vegetable broth. Mix well. Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed. Assess the amount of broth needed. The stuffing should be completely moistened but not soaking or soggy. I used 2 cups of broth in this step and another 1/2 cup over top before baking.
  7. Transfer to Baking Dish: Transfer the stuffing to the prepared baking dish, spreading out in an even layer. Drizzle with additional broth. Sprinkle with pecans if using. Cover the baking dish with foil.
  8. Bake Stuffing: Reduce the oven heat to 350 F. Bake covered for 25 min. Uncover and bake for another 25-30 min, until top becomes golden-brown and lightly crisped.


To make ahead you can dry out the bread 1-2 days ahead. Store the bread in a sealed bag or container until you’re ready. You can cook the onion mixture 1-2 days and advance and store it in the fridge. You can bake the stuffing ahead of time, cover with foil then reheat in the oven at 350 F for 10-15 minutes before serving. You can assemble the entire casserole, up until the point of baking, then cover and place in your fridge tightly covered for 1-2 days. Remove from fridge 45 mins before baking (to come to room temperature). 

Leftover stuffing will keep in an airtight container or tightly wrapped in the casserole dish for up to 4 days in the fridge. Reheat in the oven for a crisp texture or in the microwave if you don’t mind it being softer.


  • Serving Size: 1/8th of recipe
  • Calories: 223
  • Sugar: 8 g
  • Sodium: 548 mg
  • Fat: 5 g
  • Carbohydrates: 40 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Protein: 6 g

Keywords: butternut squash stuffing