So if ya’ll know me at all, you would know that I am in love with kabocha squash. Actually, it’s more of an obsession. I will drive 45 minutes for some (and I really have). I get so many questions about how to make it, how to pick it, and how to track the macros because it isn’t very consistent. I’m going to break it all down for you, because trust me you need to experience the deliciousness of this squash. I basically can’t eat any other squash now because it doesn’t compare. Back off, butternut and acorn. Once you go Kabocha, you don’t go back.
Okay, so, what even is Kabocha? No, it’s not Kombucha like the probiotic drink that everyone gets confused with. Ka-bO-cha is a japanese pumpkin – basic girls unite! It doesn’t taste like a real pumpkin though, which was barely any flavor, so all you pumpkin haters don’t worry. It’s green on the outside, and orange on the inside, so it’s not a pumpkin for halloween decoration. It’s dense like a sweet potato, but is lower in calories and carbs, and yes you can definitely eat the skin.
Next step is the MOST IMPORTANT part, so pay attention. You must, and I mean must, pick the correct squash or else you will regret buying and trying the squash and then I will get a ton of hate-emails. Picking the right squash is key, and it’s kind of annoying because you will know the second you cut it open if it’s good or bad. Just like you wouldn’t want to eat an un-ripe avocado or a super un-ripe banana, you don’t want a squash that isn’t just right. The perfect squash is dry and flaky, whereas the crappy squash is very watery and just no.
There are two different things to do in order to help you pick the perfect squash:
COLOR – On the outside, look for the squash that’s deep in green color. They might have some lighter patches or orange patches but that’s fine. This color is the one you want. On the inside, if you see this deep color, it’s perfect. If it’s a lot lighter and not as deep you’ll no it’s no good.
WEIGHT – Pick up the squash and feel for the one that feels heavy for it’s size. You’ll have to use your own judgment here, but if it feels heavier than you thought it’d be, then it’s good and wasn’t picked too early.
Now, how do you make it? First I cut them in half and scoop out the seeds. Then personally, I like to just spray them with coconut oil cooking spray, sprinkle with cinnamon and bake for 25 min or so at 450. I find that it comes out perfectly at the higher heat/shorter time.
That’s it! As long as you pick the right one and don’t cook it too much, you’re set.
As for the macros, it’s a little bit inconsistent. My fitness pal says it is about 7-8 grams of carbs for about 85 grams of squash. However, apparently in Japan they say it’s about 76 calories for about 1 cup of squash (which is around 100-110g) and 18g of carbs. So, if you’re on prep or something, just stick with one and stay consistent with it.
Now just go try this squash and trust me you will thank me you did 😉
Have you tried Kabocha?
How do you like cooking it?