This super quick and easy recipe made in the Instant Pot combines butternut squash, cranberries, brown sugar and pumpkin seeds! This has to be on your holiday table.

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instant pot squash with cranberries, pecans and pumpkin seeds

If you’re like me and you love butternut squash, then this is a great recipe to focus on this holiday season! I actually found the inspiration at Costco and I knew it could be easily recreated for you guys. I love Costco but at the holidays, not so much!

making this Instant Pot Butternut Squash

I took the Instant Pot way for this tasty recipe and couldn’t believe how quickly diced butternut squash cooks in an Instant Pot. I tested it by cooking for four minutes and it was way too soft for what I was looking for. Two minutes wasn’t much better and finally I cooked it on high pressure for only one minute and it was soft but still able to hold its diced shape, which was how I needed it to look. The cooking time will depend on how large your squash pieces are, but try and keep them about an inch square.

Do I need To Still Add Liquid To the instant pot butternut squash

Yes, Instant Pots need that liquid source to create the pressure which will cook your food much faster than any other way. Water would be fine but I always like to replace water with some kind of stock like chicken or veggie just to add flavor even though it won’t be much, it’ll still be better than plain water.

butternut squash and cranberries

How To Prep The Butternut Squash.

I prefer to cut off the outer skin with a knife. You could use a vegetable peeler but It’ll take a few swipes to get through that tough peel. Slice the top and bottom from the squash and then cut the squash in half from top to bottom. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds from the inside and then cut into cubes about one inch in size.

Making The Brown Sugar Glaze.

It’s as simple as combining the brown sugar, pumpkin seeds, pecans and cranberries. It starts out more like a streusel but then the heat and the moisture from the cooked butternut squash turn that sugar into something that resembles a caramel sauce. The sweet and savory flavors are perfect to have on your plate for Thanksgiving!

Can I make this instant pot butternut squash ahead of time?

You can! To reheat, Just add it to an oven safe dish, cover with foil and warm in a 350 degree oven for about 25 minutes.

is butternut squash good for you?

Butternut squash is low calorie, and packed with fiber though this Instant Pot recipe sort of cancels the low calorie part out unfortunately because of the added brown sugar. Check out my butternut squash and chorizo tacos for a healthier dinner.

butternut squash in a dish

more butternut squash recipes

Instant Pot Butternut Squash with Brown Sugar Glaze

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 minute
Total Time: 11 minutes
Servings: 8
Author: foodnessgracious
Print Recipe


  • cup brown sugar, packed
  • cup pumpkin seeds roasted
  • ¾ cup dried cranberries
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • 1 5-6lb butternut squash
  • ½ cup veggie stock
  • 3 tbsp butter, melted


  • Combine the brown sugar, pumpkin seeds, cranberries and pecans in a bowl, set aside.
  • Peel the butternut squash and slice into one inch squares discarding any seeds as you go.
  • Make sure you have the wire rack on the base of your Instant Pot and add the stock.
  • Add the diced squash and seal with the lid.
  • Cook on high pressure for one minute and then let release naturally for 1 minute before taking off the lid.
  • Using a large spoon, gently transfer the cooked squash to a large bowl.
  • Sprinkle half of the brown sugar mixture onto the sqush and slowly fold through the squash.
  • Transfer the squash to a serving dish and top with the remaining sugar mixture.
  • Spoon the melted butter over the top of the squash and serve at once.