How to Cook a Whole Butternut Squash in the Pressure Cooker

Hate peeling and dicing hard butternut squash? Steam it in the pressure cooker instead! Perfect for any recipe that calls for pureed or mashed butternut squash.

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Photography Credit: Coco Morante

Do you hate peeling and chopping raw, hard butternut squash? Here’s another way: cut it into quarters and steam it in the pressure cooker!

After steaming, it’s really easy to scoop the squash from the tough outer skin.

This method is perfect for any recipe that calls for pureed or mashed squash. Think pasta sauces or fillings for lasagna, soups, a simple mash with butter and maple syrup, or even baby food.

How to Cook a Whole Butternut Squash in the Pressure Cooker

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  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 medium (2 1/2 to 3 pound) butternut squash

Special equipment:

Method

1 Prepare the squash for steaming: Lay the squash on its side on a cutting board — you can hold onto it with a kitchen towel for extra stability. Slice off the stem, then cut the squash in half through the middle, where the thinner neck meets the larger bottom. Cut each section in half again, then scoop out the seeds.

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2 Pressure-steam the squash: Place a wire metal trivet in your electric pressure cooker and pour in 1 1/2 cups of water. Arrange the pieces of squash on top of the trivet in a single layer. It’s fine if they overlap a bit.

Secure the lid on your pressure cooker, and make sure the pressure release valve is set to its sealing position. Select the “Steam” or “Manual” setting, and set the cooking time to 7 minutes at high pressure. (If you’re using a stovetop pressure cooker, steam the squash at high pressure for 6 minutes.)

The pot will take about 10 minutes to come up to pressure, and then the cooking program will begin.

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3 Remove the squash from the pressure cooker and cool: At the end of cooking, move the pressure release valve to its venting position. When the pressure has fully released, open the pot and use a pair of tongs to transfer the squash to a cutting board to cool.

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4 Scoop the squash from the skin: When it's cool enough to handle, use a big spoon to scoop the squash from the outer skin. At this point, it's ready to be added to any recipe calling for cooked squash.

Pressure Cooker Butternut Squash Soup Pressure Cooker Butternut Squash Soup

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Coco Morante

Author of The Essential Instant Pot Cookbook. A self-taught cook and classically-trained soprano, Coco Morante writes and sings in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she lives with her husband and their beagle. For more recipes, visit her blog, Lefty Spoon.

More from Coco

4 Comments

  1. Lana

    My Mom cuts it in half and cooks it in the microwave for 7 minutes. The skin slides right off but it is still firm enough to cube and use in recipes.

  2. Michelle Brann

    I assume the same thing could be done with similar results for a buttercup squash?

    • Adrienne

      Omg buttercup squash

      • Emma Christensen

        Does buttercup have about the same hardness as butternut? If so, I think this method would work just fine. If it’s softer or thinner, then maybe decrease the time by a minute or two. Let us know how it works out!

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Pressure Cooker Butternut Squash SoupHow to Cook a Whole Butternut Squash in the Pressure Cooker