Instant Pot Butternut Squash is the easiest and fastest way to prepare perfectly cooked, soft, and tender butternut squash.
Why Use the Instant Pot to Cook Butternut Squash
- Intensifies the Flavor. The moist heat that the Instant Pot uses to cook, steams the squash to perfection. All the nutrients are left inside the squash, instead of boiled out into the water, which intensifies the flavor of the squash.
- Two Simple Methods. You can opt to cut the squash or cook the squash whole, just like I do for my recipe for Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash.
- Super Smooth Puree. Cooking butternut squash in the Instant Pot creates the softest butternut squash. It is the best way to prepare butternut squash puree or baby food.
How to Select a Butternut Squash
You want to purchase a butternut squash that is uniform in color, without any deep cuts or bruises, and that feels heavy for its size. A few surface scratches are fine but do not purchase a squash that has deep punctures or cuts.
Two Methods for Pressure Cooking Butternut Squash
The following tips are provided to help you achieve perfect results. You will find the detailed instructions in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
Method 1: Cut the Butternut Squash Before Pressure Cooking
I prefer this method for pressure cooking butternut squash IF I can easily cut the squash. I find it much easier to remove the seeds from a raw squash verses after it has been cooked.
- Cut the squash into 6 even sections. The easiest way to cut the squash is to cut it in half lengthwise and then cut each of those in half widthwise. Scoop out the seeds in the center cavity of the squash and then cut the thicker bottom halves in half again. This will leave you with a total of 6 sections that are similar in size.
- Place those sections on the trivet and cook for 7 minutes on high pressure.
Method 2: Leave the Squash Whole
If you struggle to cut the butternut squash, you can cook it whole, but keep in mind it may be very difficult to fit a whole butternut squash in a 6-quart Instant Pot.
- If your squash fits on top of the trivet, pierce the squash several times with a sharp knife to allow steam to escape.
- Place it on the trivet, and cook for 25 minutes on High Pressure.
- As a Side Dish: Once the squash is done pressure cooking, you can simply serve the soft sections with a bit of butter, salt, and pepper for a delicious side dish! It is one of my favorite simple side dishes.
- As a Puree: Scoop out the flesh of the squash into a large bowl and mash with a fork. For a smoother butternut squash puree, place the flesh of the squash into a blender and blend until smooth. Pro-Tip: Be sure to leave the lid of the blender cracked open to let steam escape when blending.
Uses for Butternut Squash Puree
I love to use this butternut squash puree in a variety of ways. It has such a mellow, slightly sweet flavor that it blends into chilis, soups, sauces, and even quesadillas with little detection--making it a great way to add some veggies into your diet!
- Add ¼-1/2 cup to Instant Pot Spaghetti Sauce. The sweetness of the squash will also help to balance out the acidity of the tomatoes.
- Spread a thin layer of the puree on a tortilla and top with cheese for a cheesy quesadilla that everyone will love.
- Add ¼-1/2 cup of Instant Pot Chili to add a sweet flavor and balance out the acidity of the tomatoes.
- Use the butternut squash puree in place of pumpkin puree in Pumpkin Muffins or Pumpkin Bread.
- Stir into oatmeal and sprinkle with cinnamon and brown sugar.
- Mix ½ cup of puree with 1 to 2 cups of refried beans and use in Bean Burritos.
- Refrigerate: Store cooled butternut squash in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days
- Freeze: Store cooled butternut squash in a freezer-safe container in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- As Baby Food: If using Instant Pot Butternut Squash as baby food, freeze the puree in ice cube trays until solid. Pop the frozen squash out of the ice cube tray and store it in a storage bag in the freezer, pulling out cubes as needed.
More Butternut Squash Recipes
- Roasted Butternut Squash Salad
- Roasted Butternut Squash
- Instant Pot Butternut Squash Soup
- Twice Baked Butternut Squash
- Vegetarian Butternut Squash Chili
If you give this Instant Pot Squash recipe a try, be sure to leave a comment and star rating below!
Instant Pot Butternut Squash
- 1 butternut squash
- 1½ cups cold tap water
Pressure Cook Butternut Squash after Cut
- Cut the squash in half lengthwise and then cut each of those in half widthwise, for a total of 4 sections. Scoop out the seeds in the center cavity of the squash. Cut the larger bottom 2 halves in half again, leaving you with a total of 6 sections that are similar in size.
- Pour 1-½ cups of cold tap water into the inner pot of the Instant Pot. Add the metal rack/trivet or steamer basket to the inner pot and place the squash on the trivet or in a steamer basket.
- Place the lid on the pressure cooker and be sure the vent knob is pointed towards sealed. Set the cooking time for 7 minutes on high pressure. Hit manual/pressure cook and use +/- buttons to adjust until the time reads 7. Once cook time has elapsed, let the pressure release naturally for at least 10 minutes.
- Serve sections with butter and seasonings. Alternatively, remove the flesh of the squash from the skin and mash or blend until smooth.
Pressure Cook a Whole Butternut Squash
- Wash and dry a whole butternut squash. Pierce the squash 4-6 times to allow steam to escape.
- Pour 1-½ cups of cold tap water into the inner pot of the Instant Pot. Add the metal rack/trivet to the inner pot and place the squash on the trivet.
- Place the lid on the pressure cooker and be sure the vent knob is pointed towards sealed. Set the cooking time for 25 minutes on high pressure. Hit manual/pressure cook and use the +/- buttons to adjust until the time reads 25. Once cook time has elapsed, let the pressure release naturally for at least 10 minutes.
- Remove the squash from the inner pot and place it on a cutting board. Cut the squash open, discard the seeds, and scoop out the flesh into a large mixing bowl or blender. Mash or blend until smooth and serve as desired.