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Squishy Squashy Cake

November 16, 2010

You thought I had finished experimenting with butternut squash in desserts after my Squashy Apply Pies, didn’t you? Well, my friends, you weren’t anticipating that I’d be sent home from work with yet another leftover butternut squash. Yes, yes, I agree. Some butternut squash risotto with crispy sage sounds like a perfectly practical and delicious dish to make. But that’s just too obvious for me. Besides, I had a butternut squash cake recipe calling out to me from my (enormous) recipe stash.

This cake called for pureed squash and I was excited to use it in this form rather than the cubes I used in my pies. As per Alton Brown’s suggestion, I steamed the squash rather than baked or boiled it because he claims you retain more of it’s natural flavors and nutrients (makes sense to me!). After ten or so minutes of steaming, the cubes were fork-tender and I whirred them up in my food processor. What a gorgeous color! One thing I can say for Mr. Butternut, he has a much truer, brighter orange hue than pumpkin. Don’t you agree?

The finished cake was extremely moist, mildly spiced, and delicious. The inversion process went much more smoothly this time as well…

If I were to make this cake again, I would omit the pineapple and increase the amount of pecans, and have made that change in the recipe below (along with some other alterations). It made the topping a little too wet and felt a little out of place with the other flavors. However, go for the pineapple if you want to! I served it at a dinner gathering and it was very well received as-is. Serve it warm with whipped cream, ice cream, or (my favorite) caramel sauce!

Squishy Squashy Cake

(Adapted from this recipe from

Yield: 9 servings


  • 3 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
  • 10 oz butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp grated nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt (nonfat is fine)
  • 1 medium apple, peeled, cored and coarsely grated (I used Granny Smith)


  1. Place a steamer basket in a medium saucepan and add about 1 inch of water to the pan. Add the peeled, cubed squash, cover and steam for about 10-15 minutes or until the squash is very tender. Remove the squash to a food processor and puree until smooth. (If you don’t have a steamer basket, you can definitely boil the squash. You can also mash by hand if you don’t have a food processor). You should have 1 cup of puree. Set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a 9×9-inch pan with aluminum foil (this will make it easier to  invert the cake).
  3. In a small bowl, combine the melted butter, 1/4 cup brown sugar and the chopped pecans. Sprinkle over the bottom of your baking dish. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugars, flour, oats, salt, spices, and baking soda. In another bowl, combine the egg, oil, vanilla and yogurt. Add to the dry ingredients, along with the squash puree, and mix gently to combine.
  5. Use a box grater to grate your apple. Fold into the batter, then pour the batter over the pecan mixture. Bake for 30 minutes, rotating the pan 180 degree after 15 minutes. Let cool at least 15 minutes before inverting onto a plate.

What’s up next? Other than the Thanksgiving pies I’ll be making, I’m curious to work with some persimmons and quince. Also, ever heard of sugar pie? I’m intrigued.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. November 16, 2010 4:06 pm

    Interesting recipe for a butternut, I havent tried using it for dessert yet and this one would be my start, That recipe looks delicious


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