Every cook has one — that very special recipe they treasure and keep a carefully guarded secret, and selfishly decline to share. Today, because I’ve decided that life is just too damn short to be stingy, I’m sharing my Top Secret Special Recipe, right here and now.

Squash muffins.
Now, don’t run off! It’s not at all what you think…

Here’s how I described these muffins to Tammy, over at Food on the Food, who seems to have more squash than she knows what to do with:

More cake-ish than breakfast-ish, even squash-haters love those gorgeous muffins. They’ll be buying up industrial-sized bags of squash to drop at your door, begging for “spontaneous baked goods” and bringing round friends to taste the vegetable miracle…

“Gorgeous Squash Muffins” are my secret weapon, guaranteed to bring college-age nephews (and their girlfriends, and their roommates, and their roommates’ girlfriends) around the house on a regular basis to brighten up the kitchen with lively gossip and philosophical debate and requests for advice both social and domestic.

And when Emily was a little tyke, she urged her doubtful-looking visiting chum to “just try” a squash muffin. “They don’t taste like squash,” she said. “They taste just like muffins. Really good ones!”

Buttercup quash, butternut squash, acorn squash or Hubbard or turban-top, it doesn’t matter — cook it and mash it and you’re ready to make some muffins. You can even use pumpkin, if you’ve had enough pumpkin pie for one holiday season…

Gorgeous Squash Muffins Recipe

¾ cup white sugar
½ cup shortening
1 egg, beaten
1 cup cooked squash
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cream of tartar
1½ cups flour

Pre-heat the oven to 350°F.

Grease a muffin pan large enough for 12 muffins, or line with paper muffin cups.

Cream together the sugar and shortening, until very light and fluffy.

Beat in the egg and squash.

In a small bowl, sift together the dry ingredients.

Add this to the creamed mixture very gradually, beating well after each addition.

Spoon into 12 muffin cups.

Bake at 350°F for 15 to 20 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack.

If you’re really doubtful about your family’s acceptance of squash in a dessert muffin… go ahead and add a dash of nutmeg and a sprinkle of cinnamon to the dry ingredients. It gives the squash that little extra “pumpkin pie” kind of flavour that is so very very popular…

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Karen

    Oh these are so good! Thank you for sharing. We bake these every chance we get. The kids love them!

  2. Yvonne

    These are so light & wonderful! I added the usual pumpkin pie type spices, plus chopped dates, pecans, & grated orange rind. Yum!!!
    P.S. I bought a can of squash by mistake, thinking it was canned pumpkin, like the other can on the shelf was. Now what do I do with this, I thought. I googled squash muffins-and, luckily your recipe popped up. :-)

  3. Courtney

    I too came across these after a web search and I’m SO GLAD I DID! My husband just called me to ask if I could make a side dish for all the guys at his work cause his boss is bringing in lunch. He wanted something that guys would like that is “easy to pick up” so I immediately thought of muffins. I have three acorn squash I need to use and wondered if anyone knew of a good recipe. Thank you so much for sharing this one! I will definitely be a regular reader of your blog now :)

  4. joanna

    i’m looking forward to try this recipe since my father has been requesting for squash muffins this past few days.

    thanks a bunch! :D

  5. Jessica

    I just randomly came across this recipe on the web after searching for a way to use up some leftover acorn squash. The muffins are delicious! I substituted 1/3 cup butter for the shortening and added some nutmeg and cinnamon, and they’re so yummy. Thanks for a great recipe!

  6. Mitchell Allen

    LOL! I did the whole vegetables as muffins thing back in the mid ’80s. I never tried squash, but I did follow a zucchini recipe out of the newspaper. It was okay, but I preferred carrots. (Ehhh. wassup, doc?)

    There is something about flour and sugar that help transform the most unlikely foodstuffs into delectable treats.

    Like those bits of chocolate that come in a yellow bag…



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