Crispy Squash Bowl with Vegan Dill Cream

Created by Laura Wright
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This crispy squash bowl with luscious dill cream on top is a cozy and hearty vegan bowl dinner. Simple to make and delicious.

An overhead shot of a rice bowl with roasted pieces of squash and a drizzle of a creamy, light green sauce.
An overhead shot of cut delicata squash with spices sprinkled on top, pre-roasting.
An overhead shot of the Nutrition Stripped cookbook.

I get a lot of questions about meal planning and what my typical weeknight meals look like. We do the bowl food thing, pots of brown rice pasta with veggies, the cozy soups with ½ a loaf of bread each (carb lovers club). It’s honestly kinda boring? And while I do meal prep in a sense, it’s a very loose and lazy version of it.

I get whatever vegetables I want, wash and trim them down, separate the lettuce into leaves, put some carrot sticks into a little water bath, cook a grain and a pulse of some kind if I’m really on top of stuff. If I’m dealing with an influx of something like beets, I’ll boil them off and peel them to have on hand for salads. That’s the extent of it!

I still enjoy cooking in the moment too–even if I’ve had a weird or busy day. Meal prepping right up to the point of re-heat and eat would never work for me. I think there’s magic to be found somewhere in the middle of these states of preparedness.

My friend McKel is an advanced prep pro when it comes to eating and living well. Most of you probably know her site Nutrition Stripped, and how much of a goldmine it is for anyone looking to simplify and focus-up a balanced and vibrant lifestyle. Her whole body-and-mind approach is about maximizing simple habits so that you’ll feel amazing.

Her new book is a great dose of inspiration—if you cook healthy all the time or if you’re trying to get a handle on what it means to eat and live well. Tucked into the pages of Nutrition Stripped are tons of great strategies for planning ahead, shopping lists, tips for eating well on a budget, what to eat post-workout or when you’re feeling under the weather.

Here, I’ve taken her roasted squash with dill cashew cream and spun it out into a little squash bowl with some warm rice, extra dill, and a sprinkle of capers. Squash/early Fall vegetables and fresh dill is one of my favourite combinations, and this lush cream is delicious. I can see this sauce forming a nice little base for avocado toast, or drizzled over some crispy wedges of butter lettuce or radicchio, or used in place of the pepita sauce in this bowl. To start though, this particular bowl is a nice way to ease into Fall.

An up close image of roasted delicata squash half moons on a parchment lined baking sheet
An overhead shot of a cup of light green, creamy sauce in a white enamelware mug. A halved lemon is seen to the side.
Two overhead shots of a rice bowl with roasted pieces of squash and a drizzle of a creamy, light green sauce.

Crispy Squash Bowl with Dill Cream

This crispy squash bowl with luscious dill cream on top is a cozy and hearty vegan bowl dinner. Simple to make and delicious.
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crispy squash bowl with dill cream (vegan) - The First Mess
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings 4


Dill Cashew Cream

  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked for 2 hours and drained
  • ½ cup water
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh dill
  • ¼ cup chopped sweet onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • juice of 1 lemon (roughly 1/4 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ground black pepper, to taste


  • 2 acorn/delicata squash, halved lengthwise and seeded (I prefer delicata–no peeling necessary!)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • pinch sea salt
  • pinch ground cumin
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • ground black pepper, to taste



  • From Nutrition Stripped: 100 Whole Food Recipes Made Deliciously Simple by McKel Hill, MS, RDN
  • For the squash bowl, I just served portions of the squash and dill cream with warm brown/wild rice, a sprinkle of sesame seeds, and some capers. Some arugula in the mix would have been ideal, but my refrigerator inventory just didn’t allow for it ;)
  • This squash and dill cream combo would taste good with so many things though. You can totally do as McKel does and serve them up on their own, too!


  • Make the dill cashew cream: combine the drained cashews, water, dill, onion, garlic, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in an upright blender. Blend the cashew mixture on high until completely velvety and smooth. Scrape the cream into a glass jar and set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line 2 medium or 1 large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Slice the seeded squash in 1/2 inch thick wedges/half moons. On the baking sheet(s), toss the squash slices with the olive oil, salt, cumin, cayenne, and black pepper. Spread the coated squash slices out into a single layer. Place the squash in the oven, and roast for about 30 minutes, flipping at the halfway point. The slices should have deeply golden edges.
  • Serve the squash bowl warm with dill cashew cream for dipping/drizzling.
An overhead shot of a rice bowl with roasted pieces of squash and a drizzle of a creamy, light green sauce.

28/09/2016 (Last Updated 12/07/2023)
Posted in: autumn, cashews, creamy, earthy, gluten free, main course, quick, refined sugar-free, roasted, sauce, side dish, sour, sweet, vegan, winter


Recipe Rating

  • Sarah

    This was delicious! I didn’t have cashews so used Belsoy creamer instead and it was v tasty :)

  • Sarah @ Balancedbabe

    Love this! Looks so good!

  • Chelsea @ Chelsea's Healthy Kitchen

    I tried the whole meal prep thing for a little while, but it just wasn’t for me – even though I spend all day teaching cooking at work, I still like to come home at the end of the day and cook some more haha.

    This dish looks lovely! I’m so glad to have discovered lately that soaked sunflower seeds make a great nut free sub for cashews that’s safe for my allergies.

  • Jessie Snyder

    I’m right there with you on the having everything ready to assemble kind of backwards meal prep! But it sure feels good every once and a while to grab and go. McKel’s book sounds amazing, she is such a pro. Thanks for sharing this beauty with us Laura – xo.

  • Alexandra

    Wow, this is so pretty!

    Does the sauce come out very onion-y? 1/4 cup raw onion seems like a lot.

  • Sarah | Well and Full

    My meal prep skills have definitely been on the backburner lately… I need to get back on the train! I love making meals with different components, so you can mix and match them with other things you have prepared. And this dill cream sounds delicious and super versatile, too! I can see myself putting it on everything! :D

  • Allyson

    Having already cooked vegetables/beans/grains increases my likeliness of eating a healthy meal by about a thousand. I’m glad I’m not alone in this realization. This squash bowl looks like a big hug, which is everything I want from fall food.

  • McKel Hill

    This is so beautiful, Laura! Thank you so much for sharing and putting your incredible touch on the book! xx

  • Marsha

    Is the squash peeled?

    • Laura

      If you use delicata squash, it can remain un-peeled. I’ll make a note on the recipe ;)