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Squash with Brussel Sprouts and Chestnuts

fall vegetable medley recipe
Squash with Brussel Sprouts and Chestnuts is a festive, quick and easy dish to make for Thanksgiving or Christmas.

Squash with Brussel Sprouts and Chestnuts is a classic Thanksgiving recipe. I make it year after year. It’s festive enough to make both a healthy Thanksgiving side dish as well as a wonderful vegetable dish for Christmas.

I love Squash with Brussel Sprouts and Chestnuts because it is an especially wonderful combination of fall vegetables. Sweet butternut squash (any winter squash is likely to work in this recipe), along with tender brussel sprouts and nutty chestnuts, combine to make a wonderful Paleo Thanksgiving vegetable dish that your guests will not forget.

Squash with Brussel Sprouts and Chestnuts


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • ½ pound butternut squash, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • ½ pound brussel sprouts, cut in half (about 3 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 cup cooked chestnuts, cut in half
  • ¼ teaspoon celtic sea salt
  1. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat
  2. Caramelize onion, sautéing 10-15 minutes until golden brown
  3. Add brussel sprouts and squash to skillet, cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally
  4. Add water to skillet, cover, and cook for an additional 4-6 minutes, until vegetables are fork tender
  5. Stir in chestnuts and salt
  6. Serve

Makes 6-8 servings

When I make this dish each year I go on a massive hunt for shelled, pre-cooked chestnuts. Usually I can find them at one of our local health food stores, but trust me, I am relieved each year when I locate the chestnuts. Thanksgiving just wouldn’t be Thanksgiving to me without one dish that contains chestnuts on our table.

Which Thanksgiving side dishes do you make a tradition of serving each year? Leave a comment and let us know what your favorite Thanksgiving vegetable dishes are!

Here are some other Paleo vegetable recipes that I like to serve as Thanksgiving side dishes:

posted on November 20, 2013, 18 comments

  1. i’m not a paleo person, but nonetheless this is one fabulous dish!

  2. Johanna

    Costco carries Gefen roasted and peeled chestnuts. The box comes with 4 packages, and it’s a great time saver from having to boil and peel them.

  3. Oge | healthy food delivery @ foodieforall.com

    Thanks for another great recipe Elena! I am a big fan of brussel sprouts, but in most recipes they are cooked with bacon fat, etc. This is a refreshing change. For thanksgiving, we usually do a variation of a pumpkin dish, either roasted as a side dish, in a salad, stuffing, soup or dessert.

  4. Lynnette

    So you’re the one buying out the chestnuts right before i get there ;-) Thank you Elana for this refreshing recipe idea!

  5. This recipe sounds wonderful, but I would not want to use chestnuts imported from China. Perhaps there are no USA harvested chestnuts due to the disease which killed off the trees(?), and I’m at a loss to suggest a substitute with the same taste as chestnuts. But other whole nuts, like pecans, might give the recipe a nutty crunch, or freshly harvested Jerusalem Artichokes are another possibility – still keeping the recipe paleo. Thanks for sharing your traditional favorite Elana!

  6. Squash and sprouts are favorites of mine–now I’ll have to hunt down some chestnuts too!

  7. Alisa

    Judy, there are several farms in the US that grow chestnuts and sell them online. However, the ready made ones in a bag all seem to be from China.
    Elana, thank you for combining three of my favorite things into a hearty side dish. I will probably make this every week, since I regularly cook kabocha squash and brussels sprouts anyway, and my family loooves chestnuts.

  8. Stacy

    Could you roast this in the over vs on stovetop?

  9. This recipe looks great. Brussels sprouts are probably my favorite thing on the planet. I included a link to this on my most recent blog post about recipes to serve at Thanksgiving. I can’t wait to try it.

  10. GiGi Eats Celebrities @ gigieatscelebrities.com

    All the foods I adore, in ONE dish! This will be happening on Thursday.

  11. Brussel sprouts are a classic Thanksgiving side dish for my family. I’ve never tried it with chestnut, but it sounds really good.

    Pre-peeled chestnuts are the best. It just takes far too long to roast it and peel it on my own.

    I live in Canada, and it’s too bad that Thanksgiving has already passed. Otherwise, I would have probably incorporated this into the meal!

    I think this dish could be suitable for Christmas… so maybe I will just wait until then.

  12. Yvette

    Thank you for this recipe. We made this yesterday for Thanksgiving and it was a hit! Nice light dish compared to the heavy recipes that we always eat. Every one loved it!

  13. Debra

    Thank you so much, for this fabulous recipe. I made it for our Thanksgiving dinner, and it was a huge hit. It will definitely be going into my regular side dish rotation.

  14. Elsa

    I live in South Korea, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen brussel sprouts. But cabbage was pretty good in this as well! I plan on making this for my parents when I go back to the States this winter, but this time I’ll use brussel sprouts. Thanks for sharing!

  15. Bob

    Wonderful! And sooooo simple…..Made it for 30 people by roasting the squash pieces with olive oil sea salt and pepper and boiling the sprouts for a few minutes in water, with the onions done on the stovetop–put it all together with the chestnuts and then warmed it up later in the oven to serve—came out perfect.

  16. Canned chestnuts from France are available on amazon. Do a search: chestnuts France.

  17. Julia

    Hi Elana, thank you for the recipe. I came across it a couple of weeks ago and tonight at the grocery store I remembered when I spotted precooked organic chestnuts.
    As it was supposed to be a main course for us, I adapted it slightly. It turned out pretty good so I figured I’d share with you:
    I followed the recipe, except I didn’t add plain water in step 4. Instead I separately prepared and then used a mix of three tablespoons of water, one tablespoon of Dijon mustard, 1/4 tsp ground cumin, 1/2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper, 1/8 tsp grated nutmeg and a few dashes of each cayenne pepper and Aleppo pepper. At the end of the cooking time I also added the juice of half a lemon and 2 tbsp of chopped fresh parsley.
    We had it with a side salad of lambs lettuce and raw mushrooms in a whole grain mustard / balsamic vinaigrette.
    Great comfort food – also after the holidays :-)
    All the best from one of your followers in Germany

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