Butternut Squash Gratin Casserole is a delicious and healthy side dish that’s great for a special meal like Thanksgiving, or just as at home for a busy weeknight dinner.
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Great make ahead recipe for any day
This casserole is loaded with flavor and packed with veggies. It reheats well, so it’s a great recipe to make ahead and serve for Thanksgiving.
This side dish has a great balance of flavors, filling earthy butternut squash, oniony leeks, and creamy tangy goat cheese, all wrapped up in a lovely hot gratin.
All those veggies that perfectly pair together, and make a healthy and complete side dish. Yum!
I love to bump up the herb flavors in this gratin by using some Roasted Herb Oil.
How to serve this Casserole
Butternut Squash Gratin is a great side dish for a simple homemade dinner.
Serve it with grilled fish and a lovely glass of wine, and dinner’s all set!
It’s also a great dish to take to a potluck or family dinner. Just prep it the day before, and once you get to the party, add the milk and bake it up.
How to handle leeks:
In case you aren’t familiar with leeks, here’s how you handle them:
The tasty parts of the leeks are the white and about 1 to 2 inches of the light green parts. The dark green part is very tough, and not really good to eat, but it can be added to broth or stock.
I always save the dark green parts, wrap them in freezer bags, and use them to make vegetarian broth. Read more about my broth here.
Leeks are grown in sandy soil, and need to be cleaned thoroughly. Cut the dark part (the part you aren’t going to use) and the root end off the leek, then cut the leek lengthwise.
Now you will see that there are layers in the leeks. Rinse the muddy part that’s between the layers out, rubbing with your fingers if necessary. Shake off the excess water, and the leeks are ready to be chopped and cooked.
Can this be made ahead?
This is a fantastic dish to make ahead of time. We’re all about prepping dishes before Thanksgiving and this one fits that bill.
Prep everything up until Step #4 of the recipe card instructions. Cover and chill the casserole in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve it in 30-40 minutes.
Simply pop it in the oven at 375 ° F and bake for 30-40 minutes, uncovered.
Can I freeze this casserole?
Freezing the leftovers is 100% doable as well.
It’s easiest to prepare the dish fully and freeze as a completed dish. Just defrost in the refrigerator and bake at 375° F for 30 minutes, or until dish is heated through. You can also add some fresh goat cheese on top if desired.
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Butternut Squash Gratin Casserole Recipe
Butternut Squash Gratin Casserole
- 1 large butternut squash peeled, seeded, cut into 3/4- to 1-inch cubes
- 3 tablespoons olive oil divided use
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt plus 1 pinch salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper divided use
- 4 leeks white and pale green parts only, cleaned and sliced
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 4- ounce log soft fresh goat cheese
- 1/3 cup whole milk
- Additional fresh thyme for garnish
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Place butternut squash cubes in large bowl, and drizzle with oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper, and toss to coat. Spread squash cubes onto a large rimmed baking sheet, and roast until just tender and beginning to brown, stirring occasionally, about 35 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a large heavy skillet over medium-low heat, add oil. Once oil is hot, add leeks and thyme, and sprinkle with a pinch of salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Sauté until tender but not brown, about 15 minutes.
- Coat 13×9-inch baking dish with a light drizzle of oil or cooking spray. Spread half of leek mixture over bottom of baking dish. Sprinkle with half of squash and half of goat cheese. Repeat layering with leeks, squash, and goat cheese.
- The gratin can be made one day ahead to this point, cover and chill until ready to bake.
- Preheat oven to 375°F. Pour milk evenly over gratin. Bake, uncovered, until gratin is heated through, about 30 minutes (40 minutes if previously chilled). Enjoy.
This post was originally written as a guest post for another blog back in 2015. I have updated this syndicated version of the post several times. I have recently learned that the other blog was sold by the original owner who had some medical issues she needed to attend to. I have also learned that the guest post now contains no links back or mentions of the fact that I actually wrote it. Which makes me sad. But, C’est la vie, I guess.