These easy air fryer butternut squash cubes are tender, crispy, and ready in under 20 minutes. You can pick from three delicious flavor variations: garlic sage with pine nuts, cinnamon maple glazed, or rosemary. The perfect side dish for any meal!
The best crispy air fryer butternut squash cubes
Air frying vegetables is seriously the best way to cook them. They are always super tender and crispy. But, best of all, air frying takes half the amount that roasting in an oven does. I love these air fryer baby carrots and these air fryer sweet potato cubes, too – if you’re on the hunt for more recipes.
These air fryer butternut squash cubes are super delicious and easy to make! You can pick from three flavor variations: warm cinnamon maple glazed, classic rosemary, or crispy garlic sage with toasted pine nuts. I love all three and keep them on rotation in our house.
From start to finish, air frying butternut squash takes 20 minutes. This is much quicker than waiting 40 minutes for them to roast it in the oven. Plus, you can use frozen or pre-cut butternut squash cubes to bake this recipe even faster and easier.
I love serving air-fried butternut squash cubes as a side dish and adding it to salads. It’s perfect for busy people, moms, and meal preppers! We love this four ingredient, quick, and simple healthy side dish. It’s vegan and gluten-free too!
Why you’ll love this easy air fryer recipe:
- Crispy & Tender. These butternut squash cubes are air-fried to crispy and tender perfection.
- Quick & Easy. Air fryer butternut squash takes under 20 minutes to make.
- Healthy. This recipe is healthy, gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo, and vegan!
- Customizable. I offer three different flavor variations in the recipe card below.
- Flavorful. The spices and herbs take these air-fried butternut squash cubes to the next level.
- Vegan. This air fryer side dish is 100% vegan.
- 4 Ingredients. You only need four base ingredients plus your choice of seasoning!
- Holiday Side Dish. It’s perfect for family dinners, Thanksgiving, or even Christmas lunch.
- Try these top-rated Air Fryer Green Beans or this Air Fried Parmesan Zucchini next!
Ingredients & substitutions
Air fryer butternut squash cubes are made with four ingredients, and you can pick between three flavors: classic rosemary, garlic sage, or cinnamon maple glazed. Here is a list of all the ingredients so you are prepared. Please scroll to the bottom of this blog post to see the entire recipe card with measurements.
- Butternut Squash: You need one large butternut squash or store-bought pre-cut butternut squash. You can even use frozen butternut squash cubes if needed – I left instructions below!
- Olive Oil: This ensures the butternut squash cubes are crisp and tender when air-fried. You can use avocado oil.
- Salt & Black Pepper: For seasoning, just adjust it to your preference!
- Garnishes: Depending on the flavor you pick, you’ll need cinnamon, maple syrup, sage, pine nuts, and/or rosemary. Get the measurement at the bottom of the post!
How to make air fryer butternut squash cubes
Air frying is the easiest way to prepare butternut squash cubes: they are tender on the inside, crispy on the outside, and ready in less than 20 minutes. Here are step-by-step directions and pictures for visual reference:
First, preheat your air fryer to 380°F and lightly grease the basket with non-stick olive oil spray. Then, decide which flavor variation you want.
If you make the classic rosemary or garlic sage variation, toss the cubed butternut squash in a mixing bowl with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
If you are making the cinnamon maple version, toss the cubed butternut squash in a mixing bowl with olive oil, salt, pepper, maple syrup, and cinnamon.
Then, add to preheated air fryer and cook for a total of 18 – 20 minutes. Shake the basket at the 10-minute mark to ensure they are cooking evenly.
Finally, if you make the garlic sage flavor, heat ½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil in a small saute pan over medium. Add minced garlic, sage, and pine nuts. Saute for 2 – 4 minutes until the pine nuts are lightly browned. When the squash is done, pour this sauce over them in a mixing bowl and toss to coat.
Garnish your tender, crispy air fryer butternut squash cubes, serve immediately, and enjoy!
Expert recipe tips
These are my expert air frying cooking tips since I have 50+ air fryer recipes on my blog:
- Peel the butternut squash. Make sure to peel the squash before air frying! When air-fried, butternut squash skin is tough to eat.
- Use dried herbs. I use my air fryer daily and found that using dried herbs to season your vegetables is best. Fresh garlic or rosemary will burn from the high and very concentrated heat.
- Shake the basket at the 10-minute mark. Every air fryer is different, so I recommend shaking the butternut squash cubes around at the 10-minute mark to ensure they cook evenly.
- Save extra time. You can save 10 minutes of prep time by buying prepared squash cubes from the supermarket. You’ll need about 400g to 450g.
- Don’t skip out on the olive oil. You only need one tablespoon, and it is super important. The olive oil helps crispen the cubes as they air fry while also making them tender.
- Use frozen butternut squash. Trust me, this is the best recipe because you can use frozen butter squash cubes, too. No need to allow them to thaw; simply season them and throw them into the air fryer. You may need to increase the cooking time by 2 – 4 minutes.
- Make them sweeter. Substitute brown sugar for the maple syrup if you want something a little sweeter.
Air fryer butternut squash variations
This is the best air fryer butternut squash recipe because it is super customizable. Here are three flavor variations you need to try:
- Rosemary or Parsley: Garnish your air fryer butternut squash cubes with fresh rosemary or parsley for that classic herb flavor. This combination is perfect for Thanksgiving!
- Cinnamon Maple: Nothing is better than tender roasted butternut squash coated in a maple cinnamon glaze. This is perfect for Christmas or any holiday!
- Garlic Sage: My favorite flavor variation! Toss your air fryer butternut squash in a crispy sage, garlic, and pine nut coating. So delicious!
What to serve with butternut squash
Butternut squash is perfect for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinners, family dinners, or meal prep. It goes well with so many dishes! Here are a few ideas broken out by protein type:
- Salads. Air-fried butternut squash is perfect on or alongside salads! Here are my favorites kale crunch salad, strawberry goat cheese salad, or on the side with this broccolini salad.
- Chicken. Serve your air fryer butternut squash with one of these fall chicken recipes: air fryer chicken thighs, Greek yogurt chicken, or feta stuffed chicken breasts.
- Pork: Roasted pork loin or pork chops are excellent choices. The sweetness of the squash contrasts nicely with the savory flavors of pork.
- Fish. For all my pescetarians, here are a few ideas: air fryer tilapia, salmon with pesto and vegetables, and grilled bbq shrimp.
- Beef: If you enjoy beef, consider serving roasted butternut squash with a well-seasoned steak or beef tenderloin.
- Pasta. Butternut squash goes super well with all your favorite cozy pasta recipes. I love lemon caper pasta and chicken broccoli pasta bake.
- Stuffed Peppers or Mushrooms: For a great vegetarian meal, try serving it with stuffed roasted peppers or portobello mushrooms.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you have to peel butternut squash before air frying?
I recommend removing the skin so each bite is tender and crispy. The air fryer will make the skin too hard to enjoy.
Can I air fry frozen butternut squash cubes?
Yes, you can certainly air-fry frozen squash cubes. Do not allow them to thaw before air frying. Simply season them and throw them into the air fryer. You may need to increase the cooking time by 2 – 4 minutes.
Is butternut squash low-carb?
Butternut squash is much lower in carbs compared to sweet potatoes. It has about 10g of net carbohydrates per 100g, whereas sweet potatoes have about 18g of net carbs per 100g.
Does this keep for meal prep?
Air fryer butternut squash is perfect for meal prep. You can make a batch on Sunday and store it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Is it gluten-free?
Yes, this recipe is 100% gluten-free. Butternut squash is naturally gluten-free.
What temperature should I air fry butternut squash?
You should air fry butternut squash at 380 degrees Fahrenheit.
How long does it take to roast butternut squash in the air fryer at 380°F?
It takes 18 to 20 minutes to air fry butternut squash cubes at 380 degrees Fahrenheit.
What does butternut squash taste like?
Butternut squash has a nutty, sweet flavor. Once the butternut squash is air-fried or oven-roasted, it is tender and soft on the inside and crispy on the outside. If I have to compare it to another vegetable, it tastes most similar to a sweet potato.
How to store and reheat butternut squash:
Storing: Store leftovers in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Reheating: You can reheat butternut squash cubes in an air fryer or microwave. For best results, reheat in an air fryer at 350ºF for 3 – 6 minutes until warm and crisp. If you made the garlic sage flavor, do not air fry to reheat – microwave them for 30 – 45 seconds until warm.
If you loved this recipe, try these next!
- Air Fryer Baby Carrots
- Air Fryer Green Beans
- Air Fryer Broccoli and Cauliflower
- Air Fryer Sweet Potato Cubes
- Air Fryer Smashed Potatoes
Did you make this recipe?
If you make this recipe, be sure to comment and rate it down below. Also, don’t forget to tag me @healthfulblondie on Instagram and use the hashtag #healthfulblondie so I can see your delicious creation and share it with my followers!
Air Fryer Butternut Squash Cubes
- 1 butternut squash, peeled, seeds scooped and cubed (OR 3 cups of store-bought butternut squash cubes)
- 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tbsp fresh sage, finely chopped
- ¼ – ⅓ cup pine nuts
Classic Rosmary or Parsley:
- Garnish: 1 – 2 tbsp fresh rosemary or parsley, chopped
- 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
- ¾ tsp ground cinnamon
- Garnish: 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped
- Preheat your air fryer to 380°F and lightly grease the basket with non-stick olive oil spray. Decide which flavor variation you want.
- Classic or Garlic Sage: Toss the cubed butternut squash in a mixing bowl with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
- Cinnamon Maple: Toss the cubed butternut squash in a mixing bowl with olive oil, salt, pepper, maple syrup, and cinnamon.
- Add to preheated air fryer and cook for a total of 18 – 20 minutes. Shake the basket at the 10-minute mark to ensure they are cooking evenly.
- Garlic Sage: While the squash is air frying, heat ½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil in a small saute pan over medium. Add minced garlic, sage, and pine nuts. Saute for 2 – 4 minutes until the pine nuts are lightly browned. When the squash is done, pour this sauce over them in a mixing bowl and toss to coat.
- Garnish, serve immediately, and enjoy!
I only recommend products I love and use myself. In full disclosure, I may receive a small compensation for purchasing a product I recommend. Thank you for supporting Healthful Blondie!
Sharing is caring!