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Butternut Squash Wild Rice Pilaf

Butternut Squash Wild Rice Pilaf is a tasty and unique ONE-PAN meal! Roast seasoned wild rice, smoked chicken & apple sausage, maple butternut squash, and perfectly caramelized Brussels sprouts and then drizzled in an irresistible maple-orange vinaigrette. (That's right -- even the wild rice cooks on the sheet pan along with everything else!)
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American, Healthy
Keyword Butternut Squash Wild Rice Pilaf
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 32 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 2 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 829kcal
Cost $12.63

Ingredients

Sheet Pan

  • 3 cups (427g) butternut squash cubed
  • 1-1/2 cups (185g) red onion chopped (~1/2 large onion)
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • Olive oil, fine sea salt, and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 package (12 oz.; 340g smoked chicken sausage, coined (Note 1)
  • 2 packages (8.8 oz.; 250g each) pre-cooked Wild Rice Pilaf (I use Uncle Ben's Ready Rice Long Grain & Wild Rice)
  • 2 cups (185g) halved Brussels sprouts
  • 1/3 cup (45g) coarsely chopped pecans
  • 1/3 cup sweetened dried cranberries
  • Optional: goat or feta cheese and fresh herbs (we like green onions and flat-leaf Italian parsley best!)

Dressing

  • 1-1/2 tablespoon juice of clementine (or orange)
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup (55g) olive oil

Instructions

  • PREP: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Set out a very large (I use a 15x21-inch pan) or 2 smaller sheet pans. Peel the squash and cut into small 1/2 inch cubes, cut the red onion into 1-inch chunks, trim and then cut Brussels sprouts in half. Thinly slice chicken sausage into coins. The recipe timing depends on veggies cut to these sizes.
  • ROAST SQUASH AND ONIONS: On the large sheet pan, add the squash, red onions, 2 tablespoons (25g) olive oil, 1 tablespoon (19g) maple syrup, and salt and pepper to taste. (I add 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt (See Note 2) and 1/4 teaspoon pepper). With your hands, toss to generously coat everything and then spread in an even layer, leaving plenty of space for the veggies to roast. (If they're overlapping they will steam instead of roast and take a lot longer to cook.) Add the tray to the preheated oven and roast for 10 minutes.
  • ROAST BRUSSELS: Remove sheet pan from oven and add the Brussels sprouts, 1 more tablespoon olive oil, and another pinch of salt and pepper (I add 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper). Toss everything together, spread in an even layer, and return to the oven for 10 more minutes.
  • ROAST CHICKEN SAUSAGE: Remove from the oven after 10 minutes, add sliced chicken sausage, and toss everything together. Again, spread in one even layer and return to the oven.
  • ROAST RICE, CRANBERRIES, AND PECANS: Meanwhile, without opening the rice packets, knead and break up the rice with your hands to separate it into individual grains. No need to microwave or prepare the rice in any other way! Remove the pan from the oven and add the following right on top of everything: the rice, cranberries, pecans, 1 teaspoon dried parsley, 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, and salt and pepper (I add 1/4 teaspoon of each here). Toss everything together with a spatula, spread in an even layer, and return to the oven for 2 minutes.
  • DRESSING: While the veggies are roasting, prepare the dressing by combining all the ingredients in a jar. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (I add 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.) Put on the lid and shake vigorously to combine. Refrigerate until ready to use, being sure to shake before adding.
  • ENJOY: Remove the tray from the oven and toss once more. Drizzle on the dressing to taste preference (you may not want it all), and toss everything once more. Garnish with fresh herbs and cheese if desired and enjoy immediately!

Notes

Note 1: Any smoked sausage will work in this recipe. We personally love Aidells chicken and apple sausage, but smoked turkey sausage also works nicely in this recipe. Smoked sausage is already cooked, whereas fresh sausage is not.
Note 2: Instead of adding salt and pepper all at the end, we season each individual component of the dish to end up with the best possible flavor. Note that I'm using fine sea salt not table salt. If using table salt, you'll want to greatly reduce the amounts. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 829kcal | Carbohydrates: 75g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 53g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g | Monounsaturated Fat: 29g | Cholesterol: 60mg | Sodium: 1064mg | Potassium: 1469mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 21g | Vitamin A: 20522IU | Vitamin C: 142mg | Calcium: 183mg | Iron: 5mg