Butternut Squash & Leek Stuffing

A colorful stuffing for your Thanksgiving dinner! This veggie-ful stuffing is made with fall butternut squash, leeks, celery, sage, and cranberries. Vegan.

Butternut Squash & Leek Stuffing

My favorite part about Thanksgiving food – the stuffing! Why soggy-baked bread tastes so good, I have no idea, but it just does. Maybe it’s because we only eat it once a year (or in my case 5 times this year after testing this recipe and consuming the leftovers), but there’s something about that combo of celery, sage, bread, and broth that’s SO tasty.

But here’s the truth – I often shy away from making stuffing for the blog because, well, have you ever google-image searched “stuffing”? If there’s an award for “ugliest holiday dish,” it goes to stuffing. Maybe ugly holiday dishes will start trending just like ugly Christmas sweaters did, but until then, here’s my attempt to “colorize” the most brown dish ever.

Butternut Squash & Leek Stuffing Butternut Squash & Leek Stuffing

First, I looked around the kitchen and saw some leftover butternut squash, so I thought – butternut squash stuffing! Next, I decided on leeks instead of onions. Then I piled in the sage, celery, cranberries, and tiny purple onions. I topped it all with just a few fresh herbs at the end to brighten it up.

Butternut Squash & Leek Stuffing

I love this stuffing – so much so that I’ve eaten it for lunch (along with this mash) every day this week. Aside from adding color because it’s pretty, all of the extra vegetables here fill this stuffing with so much more texture and flavor than regular bread stuffing.

So, this year, we can all be thankful for stuffing that’s shareable with BOTH the family and social media 🙂

Butternut Squash & Leek Stuffing

5.0 from 4 reviews

Butternut Squash & Leek Stuffing

Serves: serves 6 as a side
  • 2 cups cubed butternut squash
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 heaping cup chopped leeks, white and light green parts, rinsed well
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • ¼ cup dry white wine
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced (or 5 cloves roasted garlic from this recipe, minced)
  • Heaping ¼ cup chopped fresh sage, plus about 12 small leaves
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary
  • Heaping 5 cups cubed sourdough bread (1-inch cubes)
  • 1½ cups vegetable broth, more if needed
  • 8 tiny pearl onions, peeled and sliced in half
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the butternut squash cubes on the pan and toss with a drizzle of olive oil and generous pinches of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Roast 25 minutes or until tender.
  2. Reduce the oven heat to 350°F and lightly grease or spray a 7.5x10-inch (or similar) pan with olive oil.
  3. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the leeks, celery, and generous pinches of salt and pepper and cook until translucent, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic, chopped sage, and rosemary and stir. Add the wine, stir, and cook for 30 seconds.
  4. Stir in the bread, then 1 cup of the broth, and gently toss until the bread cubes are evenly coated. Transfer to a baking dish and drizzle on the remaining ½ cup of broth, especially over areas that may seem dry. Evenly distribute the butternut squash, pearl onions, and sage leaves through the spaces between the bread. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil on top along with a few more pinches of salt and pepper.
  5. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the bread is golden brown on top. Sprinkle on the cranberries and chopped parsley, and serve.



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Rate this recipe (after making it):  

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      ha, well I love this colorful version, there are plenty of brown stuffing recipes everywhere else 🙂

  1. Vivian from tinyteathings.blogspot.com

    Yum!!! I would love to try this!


  2. OMG I totally feel you with this one. Also, why there is no lasagna recipes on my site. More brown squares. Ha ha ha. But you definitely made this stuff (and these images!) pop with beautiful fresh ingredients. Looks delicious! Sexiest stuffing ever!

  3. Ohh this is so fall and pretty and I LOVE it! I just might have to give stuffing a try this year 🙂

  4. Pam from Innbtween.com

    You have the wine listed twice. That can’t be a bad thing but maybe a lirttle confusing. This looks delicious!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Ha, thanks – fixed that!

  5. I need a stuffing like this in my life NOW!! YUM! I’m new to your blog and was hoping it would be ok if I linked you and visited/commented often!? Swing by my place and let me know when you can! CHEERS!

  6. Hi Jeanine, this would fit perfectly in Food on Friday: November under the American Favorites theme. Hope you bring it on over to share with everybody. Cheers from Carole’s Chatter

  7. Lexi from lexiscleankitchen.com

    I love leeks! This looks SO delicious!

  8. gerry speirs

    Ahhh, I love the stuffing also!

  9. Yum, this stuffing really is beautiful! I’m not a huge fan of stuffing and you’re totally right about it looking pretty awful… I think I’d like your much better than my moms! But shhhh please don’t tell her!

  10. love the colors! But also the different flavors that each of these bring to the stuffing, thank you for this recipe!

  11. So colorful!! It will look amazing with the rest of your Thanksgiving spread

  12. Maria

    What a pretty stuffing!

  13. Erin

    Loving the flavors here!

  14. Kate

    I made this the other day and it was AMAZING! Thanks for the wonderful (and surprisingly easy!) recipe!!

  15. Cappuccino

    Yum, this stuffing really is beautiful! I’m not a huge fan of stuffing and you’re totally right about it looking pretty awful…

    Looks delicious! Sexiest stuffing ever!

  16. Joan Deschamps

    I just discovered your blog and have made note of several recipes to try this week. I’ve also begun to think about Thanksgiving dinner, and came across this recipe. But I’m a tad confused: those halved, reddish items look like shallots, but aren’t included in the list of ingredients; or are they the “tiny pearl onions” that are in the ingredient list? (And do the small red pearl onions taste the same as the white pearl onions?)

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Joan, yes they’re tiny red pearl onions – white pearl onions would be fine too!

  17. jen

    Made this for dinner tonight (auditioning Thanksgiving recipes, ha!) and served it along with a simple green salad. It was so flavorful and beautiful! I’ve never been a big stuffing fan, but this was amazing. I used half a loaf of sourdough bread since that’s what I had on hand, roasted red onions cut into chunks, and a bit less vegetable stock (just a little over a cup). The husband raved and I sneakily hid the leftovers in the fridge so I can get to them first tomorrow. And with nearly any leftover I eat for lunch, I plan to top it with a runny fried egg. 🙂
    Definitely going on the T-Giving menu!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Jen,

      I’m so glad you both loved it! Happy to hear that it made the cut for T-giving 🙂

  18. Alison

    Hi! This looks delicious- any tips for making ahead of time? Thanks!

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      Hi Alison,

      I would go through step 4, saving the 1/2 cup of broth to drizzle in before you bake it. I hope that helps!

      • Alison

        Great! Thank you- can’t wait to make it this Thanksgiving.

  19. Ethel brock

    I am on a keratosis diet I’m going to try with out the bread hope it workspaces

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.