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The other day, I was going to roast a butternut squash in the oven to then cube and use in a stew. I noticed on the squash, there was a sticker suggesting to cook it in the microwave, with the following directions:

Cut in half and remove seeds. Place cut side down in dish and add 1/2" of water. Cook on high 8 min or till tender. Let set 5 min.

I saw that, and I was very hungry, so thought "Why not try it -- 8+5=13 minutes sure beats waiting for the oven to preheat + 50 mins of baking time", so I gave it a shot.

I was cooking that sucker for darn near just as long -- it never seemed to get soft. I think I finally got it tender after putting it back in the microwave for 8 mins at a time like 5 times, and even then it was really spotty in its doneness - a few spots were very cooked and mushy, others still rock hard.

Any ideas of what I could have done wrong? Anyone had success in cooking a butternet squash in the microwave?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I suspect the problem was the 1/2 inch of water, which would have absorbed a goodly amount of the microwave energy, preventing it from heating the flesh of the squash.

For very slightly more detailed instructions, which are not too far off from what you have tried, you might try this recipe from the Food Network, which recommends 5-7 minutes for 1/2 of a squash, but no water.

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Agreed, too much water. I used to nuke them on a plate. Takes too long, and the top of the squish is likely to be underdone. A covered casserole dish or bowl with a plate on it, no water, gave me more uniform results. Not as good as oven-baked, but still pretty tasty. –  Wayfaring Stranger Jan 13 at 20:24

I love butternut squash!! When I am making a small amount, I cook it in the microwave. When I am making a large amount, I put it in the oven. For the microwave, I peel the butternut neck, slice it into rounds, then dice it in 1/2" squares. I peel the apples and dice them. I toss both in a microwave container along with crasins and apple juice, cider, or water. I microwave it--maybe 5 minutes. Take it out and poke the squash and see if it needs more time. I am addicted to this combo. I serve it hot as a vegetable, cold in a fast salad, and I even add it to my morning oatmeal.

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