Every single year, as soon as the weather starts getting the slightest bit cooler, I start craving butternut squash. There is just something about the creamy, slightly sweet-yet-savory flavor that makes me so happy. I’d go so far as to say that it’s my favorite among all the fall produce.
One of my preferred ways to enjoy it is as a simple side dish, roasted in the oven with a little olive oil and some seasonings. That method is used as the base for this fall-inspired butternut squash burrito. A little cumin, smoked paprika, chili powder and cinnamon are added to the mix, giving the squash a hint of Mexican flair and a touch of warmth. After the squash is roasted, you’ll mash it slightly with a fork, which will give it the perfect texture for rolling up in the burrito.
As far as toppings, we’re keeping it fairly simple with these burritos. While the squash is cooling down, you’ll quickly sauté some kale to soften it up just a bit. The sweetness of the butternut squash pairs so well with the slight bite from the kale. Black beans are also added for a little protein, green onions for some extra savoriness and of course a little bit of cheese to tie it all together. These burritos are the perfect way to combine my love of Mexican food with my favorite fall ingredient.
Need a visual guide to rolling up a fantastic burrito? Be sure to check out our tutorial - it can take a little practice to get it right, but once you get the hang of it, you'll want to make burritos for every meal.
- 1 2-pound butternut squash, peeled and cut into ¾-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
- 2 ½ tablespoons olive oil divided
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- Pinch ground cinnamon
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 small bunch kale cut into bite-size pieces (about 3 cups)
- 1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 6 large flour tortillas
- 1 bunch green onions thinly sliced
- Shredded cheese of choice such as cheddar or pepper jack
- Salsa for topping (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 400ºF.
- Add the butternut squash to a large rimmed baking sheet, then drizzle with 1 ½ tablespoons of the olive oil and sprinkle with the cumin, paprika, chili powder, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and salt. Toss to combine and spread in an even layer. Bake for about 30 minutes, stirring halfway through, until tender and starting to brown. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 5 minutes. Use a fork to mash slightly (leaving some texture).
- While the squash is cooling down, set a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. When hot, add the kale and cook, stirring frequently, until bright green and slightly wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the black beans and cook until warmed through, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove from the heat.
- Assemble the burritos. Briefly warm the tortillas in a skillet or in the microwave until pliable. Set on a work surface. Place ⅙ of the mashed butternut squash in the center, followed by ⅙ of the kale/bean mixture and finally a sprinkle of green onions and the desired amount of cheese. Fold the sides over onto the middle of the burrito, then fold the bottom side up and roll up the burrito. Serve with salsa, if desired.