Ina Garten’s Butternut Squash Gratin


A fabulous new Thanksgiving recipe from Ina Garten’s new cookbook “Cook Like a Pro” (available at Hammertown). Note from Ina: “I know I use butternut squash in many of my recipes, but I love it. In the fall, this is an easy dish to dress up a simple roast chicken or pork loin. I cook the squash with garlic and a little nutmeg, then put it in a gratin dish with a topping of crunchy bread crumbs and Gruyère cheese. This is serious comfort food on a cold winter night.”

Photo by Quentin Bacon from “Cook Like a Pro”

(Serves 6 people)


  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter divided
  • Good olive oil
  • 3 cups halved and thinly sliced yellow onions (2 large)
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
  • 2 pounds butternut squash peeled, halved, seeded, and sliced crosswise 1/8 inch thick
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 cups coarse fresh bread crumbs from a country loaf
  • 1/2 cup grated Gruyère cheese (2 ounces)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Use 1 tablespoon of the butter to grease an 8-½ × 11-½-inch oval baking dish.

2. In a large (12-inch) pot or Dutch oven, such as Le Creuset, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6 to 8 minutes, until tender. Stir in the squash, nutmeg, 2 teaspoons salt, and ¾ teaspoon pepper, cover, and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Spoon the squash mixture into the prepared baking dish and smooth the top, making sure all of the squash slices are laid flat. Pour the cream over the mixture. In a medium bowl, combine the bread crumbs and 2 tablespoons olive oil and mix in the Gruyère. Sprinkle evenly over the squash. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until the top is browned and the squash is very tender when tested in the center with a small knife. Sprinkle with salt and serve hot.


  • Dianne Atkins says:

    Can I freeze the butternut squash gratin?

    • Auntie M says:

      We did a little research in general (not on this specific recipe) about freezing a squash gratin. Here are couple of opinions:
      1) The gratin assembled and ready for baking can be prepared 2 days in advance or frozen as it is for 2 weeks before baking (just bake for 5 mins longer). Or bake the gratin and when it’s cooled down, freeze it and later reheat it in the oven.
      2) (from another website comment section)
      Q: Is this freezable – perhaps at the before baking stage?
      1st reply: Should be ok, without the topping.
      2nd reply: I’ve found butternut squash to get quite waterlogged when frozen. At least that’s when I’ve tried to thaw it and then cook. I’d say freeze, top and cook from frozen so your resulting gratin isn’t too squishy. Squashy, yes. Squishy, no! 🙂

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