In this brief guide, we will answer the question, can you eat an acorn squash raw? We will weigh the benefits of eating acorn squash raw versus cooked. We will also discuss some interesting and easy ways to prepare acorn squash.
Can you eat an acorn squash raw?
You can eat acorn squashes raw even though; they taste better when cooked. You can eat acorn squash in both; raw and cooked forms to reap most of its health benefits. Raw acorn squashes are safe and, if you eat them, you will get optimum benefits from the vitamins and minerals.
Eating vegetables raw or semi-cooked have health benefits that cooked ones get ripped off. Vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants are sensitive to heat and, cooking reduces the nutritional value of most vegetables.
If you cook acorn squashes, they become more appetizing. There are various ways to cook acorn squash ranging from broiling, sautéing, grilling, and steaming.
What are the health benefits of Acorn Squashes?
Acorn squashes have Potassium, Thiamine, Manganese, and Magnesium as the mineral content. The Vitamins in acorn squashes are A, C, and B.
Raw acorn squashes also have a higher value of antioxidants; beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin.
Let us explore the in-depth health benefits that acorn squashes have to offer:
Beta carotene, changes to vitamin A by the body, is known to benefit the eyes; however, it also protects skin, breast, lung, and prostate cancer.
Vitamin A also promotes good skin and hair and delays aging.
If you eat acorn squashes raw, the antioxidants promote eye health and prevent macular degeneration. Good eye health maintains the retina of the eyes and protects from night blindness, vision impairment, and clears the cornea.
The body needs antioxidants to fight the free radicals that harm the cells. The free radicals also cause cancer by cell mutations; hence, cancer also gets ward off by antioxidants in the body.
Metabolic syndrome is linked to heart diseases, diabetes, and stroke. A poor diet or heredity conditions can cause a person to have high cholesterol, blood triglycerides, blood glucose, and blood pressure.
Acorn squashes promote metabolic health by regulating metabolic conditions. High-fiber foods such as acorn squashes can help regulate eating habits and prevent metabolic syndrome. Not only do acorn squashes have high fiber but, they provide you with healthy calories that fill you up and discourage unhealthy eating habits.
Let us discuss some aspects and characteristics of the acorn squash:
Acorn squashes are winter squashes that closely resemble the gourd in respect to the shape. Acorn squashes have a dark green color with a hint of orange at the top. Acorn squashes also come in a white and golden-yellow color.
Winter squashes usually need to be cooked. Winter squashes are characterized by their thick and hard rind and, they store for a long time.
How to incorporate acorn squash into your diet?
The best way to eat acorn squash is to alternate cooking and eating raw. Acorn Squash is a versatile vegetable and, you can experiment with the cooking techniques. Acorn squashes can be cooked on a flame, in the oven, or the microwave. The flesh, seeds, and skin all carry significant nutritional value, so try to consume as much of it as you can.
Acorn squash is high in starches which means you can eat it as a carbohydrate source. Similar to potatoes, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, and pumpkin, acorn squash can be a healthy carbohydrate source for you.
Some methods to cook acorn squash:
If you plan to steam acorn squash, you will need to peel them first. Then, cut in half and remove the core that comprises stringy flesh and seeds. Put the seeds aside which, are also edible and packed with health benefits.
Cut the peeled acorn squash into cubes, put them on a steamer rack and let it cook in the oven. If you intend to bake instead of steam acorn squash, you do not need to peel the squashes.
To bake, you can split the squash into two halves and drizzle with olive oil. Let it cook in the oven for 35–45 minutes at 200 Celsius.
You can also roast the acorn squash in a pan and, use them as a puree in soups, or bake into desserts like pie.
There are other creative ways to prepare acorn squashes;
- mashed acorn squash
- A healthy smoothie with coconut milk, cinnamon, almond butter, and frozen banana chunks.
- Make a salad together with pomegranate seeds, sliced avocado, and arugula.
- Make stuffed acorn squashes with goat cheese, cranberries, and cooked quinoa.
In this brief guide, we answered the question, can you eat an acorn squash raw? We weighed the benefits of eating acorn squash raw versus cooked. We also discussed some interesting and easy ways to prepare acorn squash.