Adobo Roasted Squash with Jalapeño Cilantro Pesto

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This warm, buttery squash is tinged with smoky flavors and just the right amount of heat!

Dig into this scrumptious adobo roasted squash with jalapeno Cilantro Pesto with zero guilt.

If you’re looking for a unique and delicious roasted squash recipe, this side dish will hit the spot. Sweet and tender squash is coated with a smoky, sweet rub and roasted to perfection. It’s then topped with a spicy, flavorful pesto and some creamy goat cheese. If you don’t eat a lot of winter squash, you’re missing out. It’s loaded with vitamins, minerals, and fiber. You can use any type of squash you like in this recipe, or even sweet potatoes! This roasted squash makes a nice side dish to grilled chicken or fish. It can also be served as a delicious vegetarian entrée when paired with the whole grain of your choice.

The Health Benefits Of Adobo Roasted Squash

This vegetarian dish is chock-ful of spicy flavor.

When it comes to discussing health benefits of vegetables, we particularly love them for cancer fighting properties. With its over-the-top amount of beta carotene and Vitamin A (one serving provides an entire RDAs worth), squash can help boost immunity. Just like its other orange colored cousins, one serving of this really does the body good.

Additionally, squash provides a healthy dose of potassium. Because less than 2% of adults in the US consume the recommended amount of potassium, everyone should eat more squash. In fact, squash contains more potassium than bananas. Who knew? 

Spicy Side Dishes Increase Weight Loss

A yummy and filling meal that's great for lunch or dinner.

You don’t have to douse your side dishes with cayenne to achieve the great effects spicy foods offer in terms of weight loss and maintenance. Adding any kind of pepper to your diet helps suppress the appetite and also can literally create a calorie burn. If you can handle the heat, your body will actually thank you for it. 

Although it may sound counterintuitive, both chipotle and jalapeño peppers contain anti-inflammation properties. The heat provided by these spicy little jewels helps to clear clogged mucous membranes. That kick you get from the first bite also jump-starts your metabolism, so this adobo roasted squash is a perfect dish to master.

How To Make The Squash With Pesto

Roasted squash and jalapeno pesto are a match mde in heaven.

So, first things first, process the butternut. Use a good peeler or very sharp knife for this. You may cut and quarter the pieces for ease of preparation. When that part is all said and done, you are so ready. Alternatively you can purchase those expensive bags of pre-cut butternut. I’ll admit, they’re awesome. If you do decide to go that route, just make sure the expiration date isn’t looming and the squash doesn’t look watery around the cuts. 

From there, the rub for the roast is a breeze and the blitz in the blender for the pesto is easy. To ensure the squash is cooked all the way through, use a sharp fork to pierce a few pieces. Like comparing the pieces to a baked potato, they should be very soft and not hard. Depending on your oven, you might need to rack up another 15-30 minutes.

I served this adobo roasted squash with marinated portobellos and sauteed rainbow chard. You can also top any grain with it or serve this spicy dish as a side to your protein of choice. A glass of milk on the side or more goat cheese on top provide immediate cooling qualities. Ready? Set? Bring the heat to the table! 

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Adobo Roasted Squash with Jalapeño Cilantro Pesto

A superfood recipe worthy of your tastebuds, this sweet and spicy dish will have you coming back for more.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Yield 4 people
Serving Size 0.5 cup squash and 1/4 cup sauce
Course Dinner, Side Dish
Cuisine Universal
Author SkinnyMs.



  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 acorn squash peeled, seeded, and diced or butternut squash
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt


  • 2 jalapeños
  • 1/2 onion small
  • 1 cilantro small bunch, fresh
  • 1 parsley small bunch, fresh
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • goat cheese crumbled, for serving
  • brown rice quinoa or other grain for serving (optional)


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Combine the spices in a small bowl and mix well. Toss these with the squash and yogurt. Lay the squash in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Roast for 20 minutes, or until squash is tender.
  • To make the pesto, combine all of the ingredients in a blender or food processor. Pulse until well combined. Add a few drops of water to thin it out if necessary.
  • Serve the squash topped with the pesto and goat cheese. Serve with your favorite whole grain for a complete meal.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 0.5cup squash and 1/4 cup sauce | Calories: 126kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 247mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 3g |
SmartPoints (Freestyle): 4
Keywords Diabetic-Friendly, Low-Carb, Quick and Easy, Vegetarian

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If you enjoyed this adobo roasted squash, we think you might also like to try our Chickpea Stuffed Acorn Squash!

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The SkinnyMs. team believes that all people, regardless of age, size, and fitness level, have the power to transform their lives — they just need the resources to do so. The SkinnyMs. method promotes healthy living through a combination of clean eating and regular exercise. We offer everything you need to be successful.

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