This under-30-minute cozy butternut squash chickpea curry is rich, creamy, and comforting! It’s Thai-inspired, made in one pot, and perfectly spiced. A healthy and cozy weeknight dinner or meal prep!
Cozy 30-minute butternut squash and chickpea curry
My favorite Fall tradition is making this butternut squash chickpea curry on Sunday afternoons. Nothing beats this super cozy, warm, and comforting meal on a cold day like this dairy-free tomato soup or this Greek chickpea soup.
This one-pot curry recipe is not only super easy to make, but it also yields 4 to 6 servings. If you are meal-prepping, this is the perfect recipe! However, my favorite thing about this easy one-pot meal is that you don’t have to roast the butternut squash! More curries ask you to roast the squash for at least 30 minutes.
This butternut squash and chickpea curry is also healthy. It is low in fat, high in protein, and has hidden veggies from hidden spinach. It’s also vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free. There is no heavy cream in this recipe!
Another thing I have to mention is how customizable this curry recipe is. You can use light or full-fat coconut milk, spinach, or kale, add chickpeas if you want, and use any type of onion or shallot you want. If you keep reading, I’ll walk you through any customization you wish to do!
Why you’ll love this easy recipe:
- One-Pot: So easy and straightforward.
- Cozy: This curry is cozy, spices, and perfect for fall.
- No Roasting: Just cook the butternut squash along with the other ingredients!
- Under 30 Minutes: It is quick and easy to make in under 30 minutes.
- Thai-Inspired: Full of warm curry spices and served on a bed of rice.
- High Protein: We add chickpeas for 12 grams of plant-based protein per serving.
- Healthy: This butternut squash chickpea curry is made with simple and healthy ingredients.
- Food Sensitivity Friendly: This recipe is gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan.
- Meal Prep: Ideal for family dinners or meal prep.
- Vegan: Great plant-forward meal!
- Try this cozy peanut butter curry for another flavorful recipe!
Ingredients & substitutions
This Thai-inspired butternut squash curry calls for simple ingredients like canned chickpeas, fresh onion, ginger, curry paste, coconut milk, and vegetable broth. It’s gluten-free, vegan, and dairy free! Here is a list of all the ingredients so you are prepared – scroll to the bottom of this blog post to see the entire recipe card with measurements.
- Olive Oil: Use olive, coconut, or avocado oil for sautéing the onions and shallot.
- Shallot: Adds sweetness and a slight sharpness, optional if you have yellow onion.
- Onion: I used a yellow onion which is naturally sweet and a little sharp. You can substitute it with sweet onion, white onion, or red onion.
- Butternut Squash: You need about one medium butternut squash. You will peel, seed, and cut it into 1-inch cubes. You can also use pre-cut butternut squash; in that case, add 3 cups worth to this curry.
- Fresh Ginger: Nothing beats the taste of freshly grated ginger. It really pulls everything together. If needed, you can substitute it with 1 teaspoon of ginger powder.
- Red Curry Paste: This gives this curry an authentic Thai flavor.
- Yellow Curry Powder: Another great spice to flavor this curry. I would not substitute this with anything.
- Chickpeas: You need one can of unsalted chickpeas. This adds texture and crunch to this curry. You can use dried chickpeas, too, but you will need to soak them overnight before cooking with them.
- Coconut Milk: I used full-fat coconut milk to make this curry extra creamy and filling, but you can also you reduced-fat light.
- Vegetable Broth: The liquid for this curry. You can also use chicken broth if you are not vegan or vegetarian.
- Lime Juice: Fresh is best. It adds the most delicious tang.
- Baby Spinach: I add spinach to everything! You cannot taste it, and it’s a great way to sneak in some vegetables.
Kitchen tools needed
You only need a few kitchen utensils to make this butternut squash chickpea curry. Clean-up is so easy! Here is a list of exactly what you need for this recipe:
- Dutch Oven or Large Pot
- Wooden Spoon
- Cutting Board
- Measuring Tools: 1/2 teaspoon and 1 Tablespoon.
How to make one pot butternut squash chickpea curry
This cozy butternut squash curry comes together in under 30 minutes in 5 simple steps. It’s made in one pot, and the instructions are simple. Here are step-by-step directions and pictures for visual reference:
First, heat oil over medium in a large Dutch oven or pot. When ready, add diced shallots and onion. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until the onions have softened and are slightly translucent.
Then, add in the diced butternut squash, ginger, red curry paste, curry powder, and salt. Gently stir to coat the squash in spices. Cook for another 3 minutes.
Add chickpeas, coconut milk, vegetable broth, and lime juice. Then, bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat, cover with a lid, and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until the squash is fork tender and the curry has thickened up.
Finally, turn the heat off and mix in the spinach until wilted. Carefully taste the curry and adjust the salt or seasonings to your preference.
If desired, serve with jasmine, basmati, or brown rice, and garnish with fresh cilantro and lime wedges. Enjoy!
Expert recipe tips & tricks
- Dice everything. Finely dice all ingredients, especially the onions and shallots, to ensure a smooth texture.
- Don’t overcook. Simmer until the butternut squash is tender. Check around the 15-minute mark to prevent mushy squash.
- Adjust the seasonings to your taste; everyone’s preferences vary. Do this at the end to suit your liking.
- Choose either light or full-fat canned coconut milk; both work. Full-fat will yield an extra creamy and rich curry.
- Ensure the butternut squash is fork-tender before removing it from the heat to avoid undercooked pieces.
- Serve on a bed of rice. I love jasmine rice, but you can also use brown rice!
- Add-Ins: Customize your curry with additional ingredients like bell peppers, peas, or tofu for added texture and nutrition.
- Make It Ahead: Curry flavors often improve over time, so consider making it a day in advance and reheating it when you’re ready to serve. This allows the flavors to meld together.
What to serve with butternut squash chickpea curry
I serve this butternut squash curry on a bed of brown, basmati, or jasmine rice with a sprinkle of fresh cilantro and crushed peanuts or cashews. If you want another vegetable as a side, I usually make these air fryer green beans. Here is a list of great side dishes:
- Rice (white, brown, or jasmine)
- Naan or pita bread
- Yogurt or a cucumber raita
- Roasted Vegetables
- A simple green salad
What’s the difference between spaghetti squash & butternut squash?
The main difference between the two is the texture. Spaghetti squash has a stringy texture and is relatively neutral in flavor once cooked. On the other hand, butternut squash has a creamy texture once roasted or cooked and a nutty, sweet flavor. Both are used for making soups, casseroles, pastas, and salads. However, butternut squash is better for curries.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does it taste like?
This butternut squash curry is Thai-inspired, with warm and rich flavors from the curry paste and powder. It is perfectly spiced, but not spicy with heat, and very comforting.
Can I use something other than butternut squash?
You can use sweet potato instead of butternut squash. Make sure to follow the same instructions and peel the sweet potatoes.
Is this recipe gluten-free?
Yes, this recipe is 100% gluten-free.
Is this recipe vegan?
This butternut squash curry is vegan and dairy-free.
Can I add chicken?
Sure! I have added cut-up grilled chicken before or shredded rotisserie chicken. I love using this chicken recipe. Simple added cooked chicken pieces in with the chickpeas.
How much protein is in this curry?
There are 12 grams of protein in this butternut squash chickpea curry.
Does it keep well for meal prep?
Yes, butternut squash curry is the ideal meal prep recipe. Easily store it in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Can I freeze butternut squash curry?
Yes! You can quickly freeze butternut squash curry. Portion the curry into freezer-safe bags and freeze for up to 1 month. When you are ready to enjoy it, reheat it on the stove or microwave.
How to store and reheat butternut squash chickpea curry:
Storing: Store leftovers in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Reheating: You can reheat this curry on the stovetop or microwave. Let it simmer on low on the stove for 5 – 8 minutes or heat in the microwave for 60 – 90 seconds until warm. I recommend placing a damp paper towel on top of the soup if you heat it in the microwave.
If you loved this recipe, try these next!
- Healthy Chicken Tortilla Soup
- Greek Chickpea Soup
- Dairy Free Tomato Soup
- Butternut Squash Pasta
- Pumpkin Sweet Potato Soup
- Cauliflower Leek Potato Soup
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!
Butternut Squash Chickpea Curry (One Pot)
- 1 – 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil
- 1 large shallot, diced
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 3 cups cubed butternut squash, ~1 squash peeled, seeded, and cubed
- 2 – 3 tsp freshly grated ginger
- 2 tbsp red curry paste
- 1 tbsp yellow curry powder
- ½ – 1 tsp salt, more to taste
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 15-ounce can unsalted chickpeas
- 15-ounce can coconut milk, full-fat or light
- ⅔ cup low-sodium vegetable broth
- 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
- 4 cups fresh baby spinach
- Serving Suggestions: jasmine, basmati, or brown rice, crushed peanuts or cashews, fresh cilantro, and lime wedges.
- In a large dutch oven or pot, heat oil over medium. When ready, add diced shallots and onion. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until the onions have softened and are slightly translucent.
- Add in diced butternut squash, ginger, red curry paste, curry powder, and salt. Gently stir to coat the squash in spices. Cook for another 3 minutes.
- Add chickpeas, coconut milk, vegetable broth, and lime juice. Then, bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat, cover with a lid, and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until the squash is fork tender and the curry has thickened up.
- Turn the heat off and mix in the spinach until wilted. Carefully taste the curry and adjust the salt or seasonings to your preference.
- Serve with jasmine, basmati, or brown rice if desired, and garnish with fresh cilantro and lime wedges. Enjoy!
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