Butternut Squash Tacos

Butternut Squash Tacos




  • 8 oz. tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic diced
  • 1 jalapeño pepper diced
  • 1/4 cup sliced white onion
  • 1/2 ripe avocado diced
  • 3 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste


  • 4 cups diced 1/2-inch peeled butternut squash
  • 3-4 small dried red chiles
  • 2 cloves garlic unpeeled, smashed and left whole
  • 1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 tsp dried oregano preferably Mexican, divided
  • 1/2 tsp salt divided
  • 1/4 tsp cumin seeds plus 1/2 tsp ground toasted cumin seeds (see Tip), divided
  • 2 cups cooked pinto beans drained (see Tip)
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 8 6- inch corn tortillas
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded and chopped red or green cabbage
  • 8 tsp crumbled queso fresco or feta cheese


  • To prepare salsa: Toast garlic cloves, jalapeño and onion in a dry medium skillet over medium heat, turning occasionally, until browned, fragrant and soft, 5 to 7 minutes.
  • Combine the tomatoes, garlic, jalapeño, onion and avocado in a blender or food processor. Process until smooth. Stir in cilantro, salt and pepper. Set aside for topping the tacos.
  • To prepare tacos: Preheat oven to 400°F.
  • Put squash in a medium bowl and add garlic, oil, 1/2 tsp oregano, 1/4 teaspoon salt and whole cumin seeds; toss to coat. Arrange on a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake until soft and beginning to brown, 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, combine beans in a small saucepan with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon oregano and 1/4 teaspoon salt, ground cumin, chili powder and pepper. Heat over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes.
  • Warm tortillas one at a time in a dry large cast-iron (or similar heavy) skillet over medium heat until soft and pliable. Wrap in a clean towel to keep warm as you go. Spoon 1/4 cup of the warm beans into each tortilla; divide the roasted squash evenly among the tacos and top each with cilantro, cabbage, 1/2 cup of the salsa and cheese. (Refrigerate the remaining 1/2 cup salsa for up to 2 days.)
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