Squash casserole is an essential dish for holidays, family gatherings, and other occasions. This wonderful dish for squash casserole, which is topped with a buttery cracker topping, is a perennial favorite.
One recipe you’ll almost always find when my family gets together for holidays, reunions, or other special occasions is squash casserole. When the squash is fresh from my vegetable garden and for Sunday suppers in the summer, I prepare it frequently.
To say that this recipe is a go-to family favorite is a severe understatement.
If you’ve ever attended a southern family reunion, you’ve probably seen the plates of squash casserole always present. And then vanish with equal speed.
HOW TO MAKE SQUASH CASSEROLE
- Good, fresh ingredients are the foundation of a good squash casserole. Smaller yellow squash is preferable since they have fewer seeds and a sweeter flavor. Although the only ingredient in this dish is an onion, Southerners know that utilizing a sweet onion will elevate your casserole to a new level. If a yellow onion is all you have, you can still use it.
- The squash and onion must first be cooked until they are soft in a large skillet with water over medium heat. This step is crucial to avoid having a watery dish by draining the extra liquid from the squash. Drain the vegetables thoroughly and reserve them once they are cooked through.
- You’ll prepare the creamy filling next. Crush buttery round crackers, then add Cheddar cheese, milk, and eggs to a bowl. Add the squash and onions after combining all the ingredients. Like bread crumbs, the crackers will serve as a binder and taste enhancer for the mixture.
- It’s up to personal preference whether you prefer a creamier or tangier flavor, although some home cooks like to add mayonnaise or sour cream to their filling.
- Then, transfer the mixture to a casserole dish after adding the melted butter, salt, and pepper.
- Finish it off by topping it with the remaining buttery round cracker and cheese mixture and butter dots, then bake it until it’s just starting to brown.
CAN SQUASH CASSEROLE BE PREPARED AHEAD OF TIME?
Definitely, yes! This entire casserole can be prepared in advance and stored in the fridge until you’re ready to bake it. Then, the casserole has just to be put together (without the cracker crust), covered and kept in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
Take it out of the fridge and let it rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes before baking. After that, bake the buttery cracker crust.
Your prepared dish can also be frozen. First, make your casserole (without the crust) in a baking dish covered with aluminum foil (allow some overhang), then cover the dish with the foil and freeze it overnight. After the frozen casserole, remove it from the baking dish, wrap it in extra foil, give it a label, and put it back in the freezer for up to three months.
The frozen dish should thaw overnight in the refrigerator before baking. After that, bake the buttery cracker crust.
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HOW TO FREEZE SQUASH CASSEROLE
Let the dish cool completely before freezing any leftover squash casserole. After that, cover it entirely in aluminum foil or plastic wrap. For up to three months, freeze it with a label on it.
Let the frozen dish thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating the leftovers. Bake uncovered for 25 minutes at 350 degrees F. Just be aware that the frozen cracker crust won’t be as crisp.
WHICH SQUASH MAKES THE BEST CASSEROLE?
The ideal summer squash for this casserole dish is yellow crookneck squash. However, the zucchini, a closely related and equally soft squash to the yellow crookneck, will also work nicely in this dish. This recipe is not meant to be used with denser winter squash, like butternut or acorn. Check out our recipe for butternut squash casserole if winter squash is all you have on hand.
HOW CAN YOU AVOID HAVING A WATERY SQUASH CASSEROLE?
Before making the casserole, the squash must be salted, partially cooked, and drained to stop it from being watery. To thicken, the combination of eggs, sour cream, mayonnaise, and cheese also functions as a binder. If you want to go the extra mile, combine the mixture with 1/2 to 1 cup of cooked white rice before baking. This creates a hearty and thick squash casserole (and turns it into a complete meal).
DOES YELLOW SQUASH REQUIRE PEELING BEFORE COOKING?
No! You don’t need to spend time peeling the yellow squash because its skin is already tender and will become even more so when cooked.
WHAT KIND OF CRACKERS GOES BEST WITH SQUASH CASSEROLE?
Ritz crackers, or buttery round crackers, are flaky and fabulous on this casserole, but feel free to use any salty, crispy cracker in their place, including traditional saltine crackers or even crackers that taste like cheese, like Cheese-Its.
HOW IS SQUASH CASSEROLE FROZEN?
Since squash is quite moist, we don’t advise freezing it. The liquid will be lost as it freezes and thaws, making the casserole sloppy and soggy. However, you may keep this squash casserole in the fridge for up to 4 days (after baking).
HOW TO AVOID HAVING A SOUPY CASSEROLE
Although squash is fantastic, it also contains a lot of water, which can make or spoil a good dinner. To avoid sadness at the dinner table, we did include a stage in our procedure. Make sure to have a sieve or strainer available to get rid of any leftover liquid from the initial sautéing of the vegetables.Print
How can you avoid having a watery squash casserole?
Before making the casserole, the squash must be salted, partially cooked, and drained to stop it from being watery. To thicken, the combination of eggs, sour cream, mayonnaise, and cheese also functions as a binder.
Do you add eggs to the casserole with squash?
Unsalted butter, three pounds of yellow squash, an onion, eggs, sour cream, three slices of cheese (Parmesan, Cheddar, and Swiss), mayonnaise, fresh thyme, and round buttery crackers are all required (like Ritz). For seasoning, you’ll also need kosher salt and pepper.
How can you prepare squash without making it mushy?
Making sure that it doesn’t steam in the oven is the trick. To do this, the zucchini must be spread out evenly and heated to a temperature that will provide dry heat.
Should the liquid be poured over the dish?
However, a general guideline is to leave the lid off if your recipe is particularly soupy or liquid-heavy. This enables the recipe’s moisture content to decrease. For less soupy recipes, you might wish to wait to remove the lid so the dish can finish with a good browning on the top.
Which meat pairs well with squash?
The mild-tasting, adaptable veggie squash complements a variety of dishes. Squash, for instance, pairs well with meats like lamb, beef, and poultry.
More Alternative Squash Recipes to try!
SUMMER SQUASH FARRO BOWL
Make this wonderful grain dish with a strong gourd-like pumpkin or kabocha squash if you can’t find any zucchini or yellow squash. Both options go nicely with the other vegetarian ingredients in this dish, including chickpeas, farro, and avocado.
WILD RICE AND BUTTERNUT SQUASH BAKE
Although this meal is the ideal Thanksgiving side, you are free to prepare it whenever the temperature drops below 60 degrees. Along with plenty of squash, the dish also includes wild rice, caramelized onions, Parmesan cheese, and mushrooms, all of which are covered in a rich cream sauce flavored with rosemary. To counteract the richness, serve it with a vegetable or low-meat main course.