Indian Butternut Squash Curry (Easy + Delicious)

This Indian Butternut Squash Curry recipe is a delicious vegan curry simmered with fragrant spices and rich coconut milk.

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This squash curry is a recipe that I make on the regular. I like that the ingredients are easy to find in the local grocery store and the fact that it’s a healthy, perfect weeknight dinner option.

Not only is it a vegetarian dinner recipe that’s perfect for Meatless Monday but it’s also vegan, dairy-free and totally healthy.

It’s also great for meal prep since the leftovers heat perfectly the next day.

I like to use light coconut milk in this recipe to cut down on calories. Plus, I find that the butternut squash is rich and creamy on its own, meaning that we don’t need the full-fat coconut milk to add more body and silkiness to the sauce.

Butternut squash curry in dutch oven.

Ingredients needed

  • Olive Oil
  • Butternut Squash – You’ll want about 4 cups of cubed squash.
  • Shallots – If you can’t find shallots, you can swap in a small onion.
  • Fresh Garlic + Ginger – To make things easy, I like to use the fresh ginger that comes in tubes. It’s often sold near the fresh herbs in grocery stores.
  • Spices – Cumin, coriander, mustard seeds, turmeric (or try one of these turmeric substitutes) and cayenne.
  • Lite Coconut Milk – Coconut milk is sold in cans and you’ll find it in the Asian foods section of your grocery store.
  • Baby Spinach – You can also use kale or arugula.
  • Fresh Cilantro – If you’re not a fan of cilantro, you can leave it out. Or, swap in parsley.

How to Make It

  • Peel and cut the butternut squash into small cubes.
  • Cook cubed butternut squash until slightly softened.
  • Add shallots.
  • Add ginger, garlic and additional spices.
  • Add coconut milk and simmer.
  • Stir in spinach.
  • Enjoy!


  • Try swapping in some sweet potatoes for the butternut squash.
  • Make a chickpea butternut squash curry by adding in a can of drained garbanzo beans when the coconut milk goes in.
  • Add some heat by adding in some red pepper flakes or minced jalapeno or serrano pepper. Or, cut back on the heat by omitting the cayenne.
  • Add in extra vegetables like kale, green beans, zucchini, etc.
  • Add extra protein by adding some cubed tofu.
  • For a pop of flavor, add in a squeeze of lime juice at the end.
Bowl of butternut curry with rice and spoon.

How to make ahead & store

  • Refrigerator: Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-5 days.
  • Freezer: You can freeze this curry. The texture of the coconut milk may turn a bit grainy after thawing, but the amazing flavor will remain the same. Store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to three months.

What to serve with it

I like to serve this curry with instant pot white rice, rice cooker coconut rice, basmati rice, brown rice or quinoa. It also is great served with some naan bread on the side.

Wine pairings

  • Dry Riesling is a great match for this squash curry. It’s hint of sweetness will tame down the heat while its acidity stands up to the bold blend of spices.
  • Gewurztraminer is another lightly sweet wine that pairs nicely with this dish.
  • Or, check out these wine pairings for Indian food.
Close up of bowl of butternut curry.

More vegetarian dinners

More butternut squash recipes

More curry recipes

Did you make this Indian Butternut Squash Curry?

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PS – If you have leftover coconut milk, try out one of these 45+ recipes that use coconut milk.

Bowl of butternut curry with rice and spoon.

Butternut Squash Curry

This Indian Butternut Squash Curry is a delicious vegetarian squash curry simmered with fragrant spices and rich coconut milk.
4.97 from 29 votes
Print Pin
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4 people


  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 pounds butternut squash (peeled and diced (about 4 cups))
  • 2 shallots (minced)
  • 8 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 Tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 – 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 13.5 ounce cans light coconut milk
  • 4 cups baby spinach leaves
  • Salt and pepper (to taste )
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro (for garnish)
  • 1/4 cup chopped peanuts (for garnish)
  • Rice (for serving)


  • In a large skillet heat olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add squash and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 6 to 8 minutes, or until slightly softened.
  • To the skillet add the shallot, and cook until softened, 1-2 minutes. Add garlic, ginger and spices. Cook, about 1 minute, until fragrant.
  • Add the coconut milk to the pan. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer, stirring occasionally, 10-15 minutes, until squash is tender. (Be careful not to boil, as the coconut milk may separate.)
  • Add spinach and stir until wilted. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Serve curry on top of rice, topped with chopped cilantro and peanuts. 
Did you make this recipe?Mention @platingsandpairings or tag #platingsandpairings!


Calories: 594kcal | Carbohydrates: 110g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Sodium: 185mg | Potassium: 1539mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 40130IU | Vitamin C: 82.5mg | Calcium: 235mg | Iron: 4.3mg

This post was originally published in 2016. It was updated in 2022. The original butternut squash curry recipe remains the same. Enjoy! 

38 thoughts on “Indian Butternut Squash Curry (Easy + Delicious)”

  1. This looks so delicious! I love vibrant dishes like this – it makes eating even more enjoyable 🙂 I’ve never tried Blue Apron, but I have tried most of the other services. They’re so helpful during the holidays especially!

    • 5 stars
      Holy crap, this is unreal. I can’t get enough. I added a little bit more cayenne for a dash more heat, used celery leaves for boldness, and added 1 tsp fenugreek for extra curry flavor. I also made a “coconut milk” by mixing 1.5 cups coconut flour with 3 cups water (vigorously shaken time to emulsify). I think this made is thicker/richer.

      Anyway, this will be an absolute go to as a serving dish for company. So good. Flavor explosion.

    • Im looking forward to making this recipe. Ill probably be using canned squash. Im excited to try it anyway. I bought a whole case of canned blended squash. Gotta do something with it. Thank you sincerely, denise king

  2. Your tag line says “Can I pour you a glass of wine”. Yes, I’m sure you can; as in you are able. You really should ask, “MAY I pour you a glass of wine”.

  3. 5 stars
    The recipe looks great, but blue apron is a terrible choice for vegetarians. You get three meals of their choice and if you don’t like any of the meals, that’s too bad. I’ll stick to my grocery store.

  4. 4 stars
    My husband and I agreed that the curry is missing something, we are just not sure what it is! Maybe it’s because we spent ten days in India last month and I’m trying to copy some of the things we ate while there. I thought the texture of the squash (once it softened) made the curry a bit too much like a thick sauce. We ate two helpings with rice, and I pureed the rest. We will consider it a soup.

  5. 5 stars
    I’m so in love with all curries, and also anything with butternut squash! So this looks like a recipe that is right up my alley. I’m not vegetarian but we love to cook vegetarian every once in a while just for a change. Totally making this!

  6. 5 stars
    Oh goodness this sounds so good, and a great use for butternut squash (I generally get stuck in a soup rut with that squash). Definitely going to give one a shot!

  7. 5 stars
    I did not have celery–but used shredded carrots instead. This was so good! The coconut milk takes it to a new level.

  8. It tasted exactly as I thought it would and I loved it. I will include it in my frequent recipes. Thanks for sharing and greetings from Mexico City.

  9. Changed the order and sauteed the spices in peanut oil in the instant pot, added the shallots, garlic and celery, and then a cup of dry chick peas and squash with some water and cooked them in the instant pot for 40 minutes. Added the coconut milk after. Very yummy.

    • I couldn’t find where I was supposed to add the shallot. I ended up not using them. Felt like the curry was missing something, but it was tasty. The squash got too mushy so I ended up making a “soup”


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