Learn how easy it is to make Instant Pot Butternut Squash! Cook a whole butternut squash or butternut squash halves in the Instant Pot. You're just 20 minutes away from a perfectly tender, buttery squash that's easy to scoop out and use in soups, casseroles, and more.
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Where are all my squash lovers at? Heyyyy-o!!!
Personally, I love a good butternut squash. I love ‘em in soup (see: Miso Roasted Butternut Squash Soup), I love ‘em in salads (see: Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash Salad) and I love ‘em Hasselback (see: Hasselback Butternut Squash).
But you know what? They are a pain in the butt-ernut to peel and chop! Because of that long, thick neck, butternuts can be particularly hard to cut into. And with them rolling around on the cutting board, your fingertips are shaking in their boots.
Let me introduce you to a better way: Instant Pot Butternut Squash. Get this - you can throw a WHOLE squash into your pressure cooker, and 20 minutes later you’ll have a perfectly tender squash that you can use in soups or stews or burritos or whatever you like.
The skin just slips off, and with a mere flick of the wrist you’ll have the seeds removed. It’s like magic.
What do I need for this recipe?
Just one ingredient, my friends. It seems silly to even type it out, but here goes:
- Butternut squash
Does that qualify as two ingredients? I think not.
I think it goes without saying that you’re going to need an Instant Pot (or other electric slow cooker) in order to make Instant Pot Butternut Squash.
How do I make this recipe?
It’s as easy as pie. Scratch that, it’s waaaaaaay easier than pie. But I love pie.
Step 1: Place the whole butternut squash in your Instant Pot, on the trivet.
Step 2: Add 1.5 cups of water to the Instant pot.
Step 3: Put the lid on the Instant Pot, and flip the valve to “sealing”
Step 4: Set the Instant Pot to Manual / High Pressure for 20 minutes
Step 5: Once the pressure cooking cycle is complete, let it naturally release for 10 minutes, and then release the remaining pressure by flipping the valve to “venting”.
Step 6: Remove the squash from your Instant Pot, and allow it to cool until you can handle it.
Step 7: Slice the squash in half, scoop the seeds, out, and either peel the sink away or use a spoon to scoop the flesh out.
Step 8: Mash the squash and serve as a side dish (I like to mash it with butter) or use it in any delicious recipe.
Pro tips / Recipe notes
Did you know that you can use butternut squash in pretty much any recipe where you'd ordinarily use pumpkin purée? That means muffins, cookies, or even pumpkin pie can be made with butternut squash purée instead!
What if my squash is too big for the Instant Pot?
No problem. Then you can cut it in half (see the photos above) or slice it into neck and trunk, and cook the halves.
Note that halves take less time to cook – about 7 minutes on high pressure rather than 20.
My squash is too firm / too mushy
Let me be real with you: one of the drawbacks of Instant Pot cookery is not being able to stop and check the food along the way.
Much like my experiments with Instant Pot Mung Beans, it definitely took some trial and error to get a handle on Instant Pot Butternut squash.
I definitely recommend cooking your squash in the Instant Pot when you’re making a soup or planning to mash it. If you’re looking for a firmer squash, like making my Hasselback Butternut Squash, you can try a shorter cook time but it’s a bit of a gamble.
If your squash is not tender enough, you can always add a bit more water to the Instant Pot and pressure cook it for another 2-3 minutes. However, you can’t take it back if your squash is too mushy. So proceed with caution.
Other recipes you might enjoy:
Instant Pot Butternut Squash
- 1 medium butternut squash About 2 pounds / 900g
- 1.5 cups water
- Start by giving your squash a good rinse.
- Place the trivet into the Instant Pot insert, and then place your whole butternut squash or squash halves on the trivet.
- Add 1.5 cups of water to the instant pot.
- Add the lid, and flip the vent to sealing.
- Set the instant pot to Manual / High pressure to 20 minutes for a whole squash, or 8 minutes for squash halves.
- When the pressure cooking cycle is complete, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes, and then flip the vent to "venting" to release the remaining pressure.
- Carefully remove the squash from the Instant Pot, and allow it to cool.
- Split the squash in half, scoop the seeds out, and either peel the skin away or scoop the flesh out with a spoon.
- Use cooked squash as desired.
- Nutrition values are an estimate only.
- Note that cooking times can vary with squash size.