Butternut squash souffle is a light and fluffy side dish to add to your holiday table. Flavored with vanilla and lemon, it’s an unexpected taste your guests will enjoy. I was compensated by Nielsen-Massey Vanillas for my time in developing this recipe and post. All opinions are my own.
My husband is very attached to the idea of turkey at Thanksgiving dinner. I’ve indulged his feelings for a few years, despite never hosting a Thanksgiving dinner for more than our motley crew of four. On alternate years, we’ve made chicken, quail, and turkey breast only, and those years without the traditional big bird felt just as special as the ones with.
We place a huge importance on the food at Thanksgiving, but there are plenty of us out there who don’t have a taste memory associated with the day. Sure, I remember having all the proper dishes on Turkey Day at my grandparents’ house, but I couldn’t tell you if the turkey was good or if we perhaps had cornbread stuffing one year. I remember being among the chorus rejecting my grandmother’s mashed rutabaga but not the flavor of it.
Thanksgiving is more about the people we choose to spend it with, our blood family and our chosen family. It’s about gawking at the spectacle of the Macy’s parade and sneaking an extra sliver of pie when you head to the kitchen for “just a drink of water.” It’s about the shared laughter that erupts when you realize your helpful kids put salt in the pie filling instead of sugar.
What we make doesn’t matter; what we choose to remember does.
If you haven’t yet settled on your menu, or just want something different to add to the table any night of the week, this butternut squash souffle is something to add to the remembering list. Smooth and fluffy, it’s not like the traditionally heavy dishes of Thanksgiving, but still uses to lovely seasonal winter squash.
We all know I adore butternut squash and use it for everything from tacos to pies to lasagna. Others might be stuck on pumpkin, but I stock up on this easily available, easily stored bulbous beauty. It’s better for you than pumpkin, too, boasting more potassium, fiber, vitamins A and C, calcium, and magnesium. (And P.S., chances are your canned pumpkin is squash anyway.)
Now, souffles might seem daunting, but they’re actually quite easy. And know that pretty much all souffles sink somewhat after removing from the oven — they just don’t like that cold air hitting them in the face.
These butternut squash souffles are flavored with a bit of Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Paste as well as Nielsen-Massey Pure Lemon Extract. You might think that dishes using vanilla have to be overly sweet, but its aromatic flavor really brings out the natural qualities of the squash. Plus, using the paste means I don’t have to worry about adding too much liquid to the souffle batter, and I get those pretty vanilla flecks. Lemon extract brightens up the whole dish, and is a great stand-in for fresh lemon zest.
Get more ideas for your holiday table over on Nielsen-Massey Vanilla’s Facebook page!
- 4 large eggs, separated
- 2 1/2 cups butternut squash puree
- 4 tablespoons melted butter
- 1/4 cup grated asiago cheese, plus more for the top
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Paste
- 1/4 teaspoon Nielsen-Massey Pure Lemon Extract
- Preheat oven to 350°F and grease three 10-ounce ramekins or souffle pans. Place on a baking sheet.
- In a large bowl, stir together egg yolks, squash puree, melted butter, asiago cheese, salt, black pepper, vanilla paste, and lemon extract. Set aside.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, whip egg whites until stiff peaks form. Gently fold egg whites into the squash mixture until no white streaks remain.
- Divided batter among prepared dishes.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, until puffed and tops are browned.
- They will deflate once removed from the oven, so serve immediately.