Recipes Side Dishes

Cranberry Apple Bacon Stuffed Acorn Squash (SCD, AIP)

Stuffed acorn squash makes for an appealing presentation, especially on a holiday table, and jazzes up what is otherwise often a pretty bland vegetable. Yes, I’ll admit it. While I generally love winter squash, acorn squash has never been one of my favorites… except when used as a vehicle for a delicious sweet and savory filling like the one in this recipe!

What kind of bacon is AIP-compliant?

This is one of the most frequently asked questions in the AIP world, I think! And the one that seems to generate the most amount of confusion and misconception.

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When it comes to bacon, the two most critical things that make it safe for a person in the AIP elimination phase are:

  1. Can you verify it is grain free (most critically, gluten free)?
  2. Can you verify it is nightshade free?

The most common ingredients that would make you unable to answer yes to both of those questions are vinegar and spices. If you see either of those words and there is no additional information qualifying those ingredients, then you need to assume that one is not compliant.

Beyond that, it is up to you. Personally, I don’t care if sugar was used in the curing process and I’m not a stickler about the curing agent being natural or synthetic (for more on the myth of “uncured” bacon, read this article). I prefer to consume bacon made from pasture raised pigs, so I usually buy it from a local farmer.

But is a local farmer isn’t an option for you, you can get compliant bacon (that happens to also be sugar free and uncured) in your monthly Butcher Box delivery. Not yet a Butcher Box member? Learn more here!

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AIP Reintroduction Ideas

This recipe for stuffed acorn squash as written is compliant with the elimination phase or the autoimmune protocol (AIP), but you can easily adapt if you are ready to expand your horizons. Here are a couple ideas…

  • Season fruit mixture with ground allspice and/or nutmeg (stage 1).
  • Add 1/4 cup cup walnuts or other nut of choice to fruit mixture (stage 2).

Do you need a refresher on the reintroduction stages and the best way to test these foods? Check out this blog post by my friend and mentor Angie Alt – Reintroductions on AIP: The Definitive Guide.


Stuffed Acorn Squash Recipe

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Cranberry Apple Bacon Stuffed Acorn Squash (SCD, AIP)

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  • Author: Jaime Hartman
  • Total Time: 57 mins
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


This sweet and savory stuffed acorn squash can be an enticing side dish for a holiday meal, or a satisfying main dish all by itself!


  • 4 bacon strips, chopped
  • 1 small apple, peeled, cored and chopped
  • 1/2 cup raw cranberries
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup bone broth
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey (optional)
  • 2 small acorn squashes, cut in half with seeds scooped out and discarded


  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. In large skillet over medium heat, cook bacon for about 5 minutes or until crispy. Remove bacon pieces with a slotted spoon, leaving fat behind.
  3. Add apples, cranberries and raisins to pan and cook, stirring frequently, until fruit has begun to soften (about 3 minutes).
  4. Add broth and maple syrup or honey, if using, and cook until cranberries have all popped and a thick sauce has formed (about 8-10 minutes).
  5. Place squash halves in an ovenproof baking dish and spoon fruit mixture into the squash cavities, dividing evenly. Top with cooked bacon.
  6. Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until squash is tender.
  • Prep Time: 12 mins
  • Cook Time: 45 mins
  • Category: Side

Enjoying winter squash season? You might also like these recipes…

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One reply on “Cranberry Apple Bacon Stuffed Acorn Squash (SCD, AIP)”

Hi Jaime – I just received a bunch of squash from my neighbour and saw your recipe this morning. Can’t wait to try this. Going to make for our dinner tonight with chicken, and am considering it for our US Thanksgiving dinner later this month.
Thank you again for all your wonderful recipes and your hard work.
You are truly a blessing to us all.

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