Recipe: Asian-style Squash and Spinach

A colorful side that's bursting with flavor
recipe butternut squash and spinach

Just because the outdoors are cold and gray, doesn’t mean your plate has to follow suit! Keep things colorful with our Asian-style Squash and Spinach, a feast for the eyes and the taste buds.

Advertising Policy

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy

Gorgeous butternut squash ― roasted to creamy, caramelized perfection ― and bright-green spinach are the nourishing heart of this dish. A little sesame oil and soy sauce, and a dressing made with lime juice, rice vinegar, scallions, cilantro and jalapeno, add a tangy, spicy pop. Loaded with nutrients and bursting with flavor, this dish has it all!


For the squash:
1 ½ pounds butternut squash, peeled
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
1 teaspoon less-sodium soy sauce

For the dressing:
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
3 scallions, thinly sliced
½ of a jalapeño, seeded and chopped
⅛ teaspoon kosher salt

For the spinach:
16 cups firmly packed fresh spinach (about 4 bunches)
1 tablespoon raw, unhulled sesame seeds
½ cup fresh cilantro

Advertising Policy


  1. Heat the oven to 425°F.
  2. For the squash, cut it in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Cut each half crosswise into ¼-inch thick slices. Put on a large rimmed sheet pan. Drizzle with the sesame oil and soy sauce. Toss to coat and spread into a single layer. Roast for about 15 minutes, or until tender and beginning to caramelize at the edges.
  3. For the dressing, in a small bowl, combine the lime juice, vinegar, sesame oil, scallions, jalapeño and salt.
  4. For the spinach, in a large pot over medium high heat, bring ¼ cup of water to a boil. Add the spinach, cover tightly, and steam for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring halfway through, until wilted.
  5. Squeeze out excess water from the spinach and divide among bowls. Dividing evenly, add the squash and drizzle with the dressing. Top with the sesame seeds and cilantro.

Nutritional information (per serving)

Makes 4 servings.

184 calories, 7 g total fat, 1 g saturated fat, 6 g protein, 30 g carbohydrate, 5 g dietary fiber, 14 g sugar, 0 g added sugar, 0 mg cholesterol, 307 mg sodium

Source: Developed by Sara Quessenberry for Cleveland Clinic Wellness. 

Advertising Policy

Advertising Policy