How to Make Butternut Squash Puree for Babies
Butternut has a sweet and nutty flavor, and it takes on a velvety texture when roasted. Like sweet potato puree, it's is the ideal compliment to a variety of other veggies, fruits, and meats. Here's how to make butternut squash puree.
Step 1: Select & Buy Butternut Squash
Peak growing season is early fall through winter. Look for butternut squash that is firm and free of cracks, bruises, or soft spots. If purchasing a package of peeled, cut butternut squash, choose squash with a deep orange color (the deeper the color, the riper and sweeter it is). A roasted 1.6-pound butternut squash yields about 14 ounces of puree.
Step 2: Wash and Prep the Butternut Squash
Rinse the butternut squash in cold water, scrubbing the skin with a small vegetable brush to remove dirt. If you've purchased pre-peeled and cut butternut squash, place in a colander and rinse with cold water.
Step 3: Cook the Butternut Squash
Whole squash: Cut butternut squash in half lengthwise (leave skin on). Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds. Place squash on a baking sheet that has been brushed with a bit of olive oil and roast at 400 degrees F. Check the squash after 30 minutes to see if it is soft and can be easily scooped with a spoon. If not, keep adding 5 minutes of roasting time until it is. Remove squash from oven and scoop the flesh into a bowl. Allow it to cool.
Peeled and cut squash: Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the squash pieces and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and rinse squash under cool water to stop the cooking process.
Step 4: Puree the Butternut Squash
Puree butternut squash in a food processor or blender until smooth. Add water as needed to reach the desired consistency. Once baby is ready for finger foods, typically around 10 months, you can serve her butternut squash that's been cooked and cut into tiny pieces.
Step 5: Serve Butternut Squash Puree
Butternut squash is very mild—ideal as a first vegetable by itself—or mixed with other veggies, fruits, meats, and spices. Try mixing butternut squash puree with:
- Dash of cinnamon or nutmeg
- Peaches (with or without yogurt)
Step 6: Refrigerate or Freeze Leftover Butternut Squash Puree
Cool butternut squash puree and refrigerate leftovers in BPA-free containers for up to 3 days. Freeze leftovers for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in your refrigerator.