Can you eat raw butternut squash?

In this brief article we will find an answer to the question, “Can you eat raw butternut squash?” and discuss the different aspects of eating butternut squash, whether it tastes better when eaten raw or cooked. In addition, we’ll also shed light on the health benefits of eating butternut squash. We will also discuss the risks of eating butternut squash.

Can you eat raw butternut squash?

Yes. Butternut squash can be eaten raw; the word ‘squash’ literally means uncooked. Butternut squash contains fiber, vitamins C, and vitamin A. It is a rich source of potassium and antioxidants. It’s a common winter squash usually eaten grilled, roasted, baked, or even pureed.  When eaten raw it is usually used in salads or blended to make a smoothie or it can also be pureed and used in a dessert. Raw butternut has a nutty, sweet taste with a stringy texture.

What are the benefits of eating butternut squash?

Eating butternut squash is known to reduce the risk of asthma, and manage blood pressure by regulating the cholesterol level. Vitamin C in butternut squash can enhance hair and skin by keeping its moisture and producing collagen. It is also known to boost immunity due to its high fiber content. 

Can babies eat butternut squash?

When babies are six months old it is a good time to introduce butternut squash as one of their first solid foods in the form of a puree with a thin texture. It is easy to digest and provides all the essential nutrients for your baby. It is usually cooked in a steamer to preserve its nutrients.

Can you eat butternut squash seeds?

Butternut squash seeds are also edible. They are rich in fiber and protein. Usually roasted but they can also be eaten raw. The seed has an outer hull (shell) and an inner kernel. The hull is roasted or boiled or may be discarded. The kernel, called pepitas, is used in a variety of dishes like salads and desserts. The seeds are also pressed to extract oil which is also used in 

How to store butternut squash and what is its shelf life?

Butternut squash can be stored in an open, dry, cool place for up to 2-3 months after which it starts degrading. The puree can be frozen and kept for up to 4 months in a freezer. When kept open it lasts for about 4-5 days. 

Fruits require a curing period of about 2 months which means they should be kept for 2 months after harvest and then they are ready for consumption. During the consumption period, they may easily last for about 4 months. It is kept at a temperature of 10 degrees Celsius and 50% humidity.

In what conditions does butternut squash go bad?

Lack of nutrients, extreme heat, drought, extreme cold, and pest infestation are different conditions that cause an increase in the levels of cucurbitacin, which makes the taste bitter. If the whole squash starts leaking the juice, or if there are any rotten spots, it is an indicator of a squash gone bad.

What is toxic squash syndrome?

Butternut squash along with other members of the squash or cucumber or pumpkin family contains a compound called Cucurbitacin, which is toxic and may cause cucurbit poisoning. This is also called ‘toxic squash syndrome’. It usually appears in people who ingest the compound.

What are the risks of eating butternut squash?

Because of its high potassium content, consuming a high amount of butternut squash may cause Hyperkalemia. People with kidney problems should not consume butternut in excess quantities. It may also cause heart failure in some cases where the patients are on a low potassium diet.

Is butternut squash healthier when eaten raw or cooked?

Raw butternut is rich in nutrients and low in calories. Cooked butternut loses its nutrient content when boiled or roasted. It usually depends on what diet and flavor you need to make. Butternut skin is hard to peel when it is raw but gets softened once roasted or boiled. On a diet, the healthiest way to eat butternut is when raw, otherwise cooking or boiling will give a better taste. 

Other FAQs about Butternut Squash that you may be interested in.

How to tell if butternut squash is bad?

How long does butternut squash last?

Can you steam butternut squash?


In this brief article, we have addressed the question “Can you eat raw butternut squash?” and discussed the answer in detail. We have also discussed other related questions on the subject such as the storage, and health benefits of consuming butternut squash raw as well as eating cooked. We also touched upon the risks and adverse effects of eating butternut squash.


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.