Butternut squash fries are a healthy alternative to traditional french fries derived from potatoes. This take on the squash is sometimes referred to as vegetable fries, and they are preferred by some people over sweet potato fries. The recipe is relatively easy to make, with the cutting process being the most challenging aspect. Butternut squash fries are either baked or fried. Other ingredients can be added to the squash before cooking the fries in order to maximize their taste.
The most difficult task in making butternut squash fries is the carving process. The large squash is first cut in half, and then the seeds are scooped out of the middle. Before cutting the butternut squash into sticks, the skin must be peeled from each half. For best results, the fries should be thin even-sized sticks so that they will cook properly and evenly.
Baking is the easiest way to cook the fries, and is done so on a baking sheet in an oven set at 400° Fahrenheit or higher. The baking sheet may be coated with olive oil if desired, and salt can be sprinkled on top of the fries. After baking for 10 minutes, the fries are turned over on the baking sheet and cooked for another 10 minutes. Browning of the butternut squash fries indicates that the baking process is complete.
This dish can also be fried on the stove in oil. For a healthier process, cooks might consider using olive oil instead of a vegetable oil version. The oil is preheated in a pan at medium heat before the fries are added. Butternut squash fries must be turned over halfway through the cooking process, or when they are crisp on one side. Salt may be added after the frying is complete.
These types of fries are best served immediately so that consumers can enjoy the crispiness. Like other types of fries, butternut squash versions do not keep well as leftovers in the refrigerator. To avoid cooking too many at once, the cook might consider cutting up one half of the squash and saving the rest for another meal.
Butternut squash is a type of winter squash best known for its nutty taste. Compared to summer squash, this vegetable has a thickness to it that makes cooking versatile. Butternut squash contains high levels of vitamin A, similar to sweet potatoes. Unlike other types of fries, butternut versions pack in high levels of other nutrients such as vitamins B and C, as well as omega-3 fatty acids and fiber. Plain butternut squash fries are also low in calories, with approximately 100 calories in four fries.