Sweet Potato & Butternut Squash Tagine ♥ Recipe

Sweet Potato & Butternut Squash Tagine ♥ A Veggie Venture, colorful vegetables married with Moroccan spices, cooked in a tagine or shallow casserole to serve tableside. Vegan. Weight Watchers Friendly.
Today's one-pot dinner recipe: A magical pairing of sweet potatoes and butternut squash, healthy bright orange vegetables married with a medley of Moroccan spices, cooked in a tagine cooking dish (or a shallow casserole dish) and served tableside. Beautiful color to banish cold-weather blues! Works as a side dish or a vegetarian supper.

Fresh & Seasonal, a Mid-Winter Classic. Great for Meal Prep. Weeknight Easy, Weekend Special. Low Fat. Weight Watchers Friendly. Not just vegan, Vegan Done Real. Naturally Gluten Free. Whole30 Friendly.

The Memory of Food, Long Later

You know how you cook something and it's so good that its memory lingers? A week, a month, some weeks later you're still feeling all dreamy? You intend to make it again, but then the moment passes, and yet the memory still lingers? And best of all, then you finally make it again and reality matches the memory?

When we first made this tagine a year ago, it was a side dish. But when I remade it this week and paired it with Oven-Baked Brown Rice, whoah, it made for a fabulous vegetarian – vegan even – supper. I was completely blown away. The ingredients are 100% familiar and yet, together, they create something entirely new and magical.

What Is a Tagine?

A tagine is North African stew, often meat and vegetables simmered with preserved lemon, olives, dried fruit and a medley of spices such as cinnamon, ginger, cumin, saffron and turmeric.

But a tagine is also a North African cooking vessel, so used with Moroccan recipes, Tunisian recipes, Algerian recipes. Food blogger Lydia Walshin has an artist friend who makes handmade clay tagines, they're just lovely and will give you an idea of the shape.

I've been cooking with a lovely All-Clad tagine, the base is stainless steel, the domed lid is glazed terra cotta which, I'll mention, is lovely and graceful in appearance but prone to chipping.

What I love most about a tagine is how it is the ultimate in stove-to-table cooking. I just love the drama of putting the tagine in the center of the table, then whisking off the lid with a big flourish. When people are over for dinner, it makes an impression! We tend to use it as a slow-cooker for the oven, combining meat with lots of vegetables to cook for several hours, then serving rice or couscous on the side. Very satisfying!

No Tagine? No Problem.

A Dutch oven is often a good substitute for a tagine, it's designed for low, slow cooking. For this particular dish, however, use a shallow oven-safe casserole dish so that the cubes of sweet potato and butternut squash have access to the liquid that is OH-so-so delicious. UPDATE Oh! And a reader had great success with a slow cooker, on high for 4 hours and another with a pressure cooker.

"It was fabulous." ~ BellePlaine
"... my partner and I think this fab dish [benefits from being left until the next day] ..." ~ Sally
"Excellent, and beloved by all who ate it!" ~ Aly
"Came out great!" ~ Anonymous

Sweet Potato & Butternut Squash Tagine Made the List
Best Vegetable Recipes of 2010


Hands-on time: 30 minutes
Time to table: 90 minutes
Serves 10 as a side dish, 4 as a main dish

(If making Oven-Baked Brown Rice, start the rice first, including putting the water on to boil. You'll put the rice and the tagine into the oven at the same time, they'll finish at the same time too!)

1 butternut squash (about 3 pounds), washed well, peeled and cubed (How to Cut a Butternut Squash & Keep All Ten Fingers)
1 pound sweet potato, peeled and cubed (see TIPS)

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cinnamon stick or 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon saffron threads, crushed
Pinch of cayenne
2 cups hot vegetable stock (I use 2 teaspoons of Homemade Vegetable Bouillon and two cups boiling water)
Sweet Potato & Butternut Squash
1/2 cup raisins or dried currants
1 tablespoon agave or honey

Cilantro leaves, chopped (don't skip these)

Heat the oven to 375F/190C. Prep the sweet potatoes and butternut squash.

START ON THE STOVE In a tagine or skillet, heat the oil on MEDIUM until shimmery. Add the onion and let cook, stirring often, until beginning to turn golden. Add the garlic and spices, cook for another minutes or two until fragrant. (If you don't have a tagine, transfer this mixture to a shallow oven-safe baking dish such as Corningware or Pyrex.) Stir in the hot broth, slowly at first, it will sizzle. Stir in the sweet potato and butternut squash cubes, top with raisins, drizzle with honey.

MOVE TO THE OVEN Cover and bake for an hour or until the vegetables are soft and aromatic but not mushy.

TO SERVE Remove the cinnamon stick, sprinkle with cilantro leaves, serve and savor.

TIMING While this dish does reheat, there's something about the freshness that's best straight from the oven.
GOOD for a CROWD This is a great dish for a crowd, a great vegetable addition to potluck tables usually so laden with sweets and starches. People LOVE it.
OUT OF RAISINS or CURRANTS? Substitute meaty Kalamata olives, they're easy to find at the olive bar in grocery stores. For convenience, buy the prepitted olives.
ADD CARROTS If you like, add or substitute carrots.
GARNET SWEET POTATOES This variety of sweet potato is especially good, because they don't get mealy like regular sweet potatoes. They are more perishable, so more expensive, but look for red-skinned sweet potatoes, some times labeled "yams" or "red-skinned yams".
DON'T MISS! Be sure to make something to sop up the luscious liquid from this dish! Pita bread would work, so would the traditional couscous and our favorite White Rice.

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Still Hungry?

More Favorite Sweet Potato Recipes

~ My Best & Favorite Sweet Potato Recipes ~
~ Frozen Sweet Potato Fries: Are They Worth the Price? the Calories? ~
~ Warm Sweet Potato Salad ~
~ East African Pea Soup ~
~ Maple Ginger Sweet Potatoes ~
~ more sweet potato recipes ~
from A Veggie Venture

~ Turkey Sweet Potato Soup ~
~ Chicken Cider Stew ~
~ Confetti Potato Salad ~
~ more sweet potato recipes ~
from Kitchen Parade, my food column

More Favorite Butternut Squash Recipes

~ My Favorite Winter Squash Recipes ~
~ How to Cut, Peel & Cube a Butternut Squash and Keep All Ten Fingers ~
~ How to Roast a Whole Butternut Squash ~
~ Curried Squash ~
~ Steamed Butternut Squash ~
~ Savory Bread Pudding with Butternut Squash, Chard & Cheddar ~
from A Veggie Venture

~ Roasted Butternut Squash & Apple ~
~ Squash Puff ~
~ Winter Stew ~
~ more winter squash recipes ~
from Kitchen Parade

Looking for healthy new ways to cook vegetables? A Veggie Venture is home to hundreds of super-organized quick, easy and healthful vegetable recipes and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables. Join "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg to explore the exciting world of common and not-so-common vegetables, seasonal to staples, savory to sweet, salads to sides, soups to supper, simple to special.

© Copyright Kitchen Parade
2010, 2014 & 2020

Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. This tagine sounds fabulous. Working into the meal rotation this week!

  2. Wow....sounds very delicious! This must be a sweet dish with sweet potatoes, honey and raisins. I love it.

  3. One of the nice things about cooking with a clay-topped tagine is that the top absorbs the flavors of everything you cook in it, like a cast iron pan or wok gets better the more you use it. My tagine tops (and bottoms) chip and crack every now and then, but it makes me feel closer to the nomads who wander the desert, tagines carried on horseback or camels, and the wonderful stews they cook under the stars at night.

  4. This sounds delicious with two of my absolute favorite veggies!

  5. This looks super yummy! :)

  6. Making now - will report back. I figure the broth gets added in with the sweet potato mix, but you might want to edit the recipe to reflect it :).

  7. Rebecca ~ Thanks for the catch, yes, I've fixed the recipe. Hope you love the tagine!

  8. Yikes, this sounds so good and chock full of good nutrition! Might be a good meal for this cold New England weekend coming up. Thanks!

  9. Okay, this is sacrilege, but I made this recipe in my pressure cooker. I sauteed the onions, etc first, then cooked it at high pressure for 3 minutes, then put the honey on it and finished it in the oven for 15 minutes. It was fabulous. Thanks for a great recipe. I love your site and use it often. (I also used much more fresh ginger and it didn't overwhelm it at all, but I do love lots of spices.)

  10. BellePlaine ~ No, not sacrilege, inspiration! So glad to be your source!

  11. That is my sort of food, healthy and tasty.

  12. Good recipe, most spicy food benefits from being left until the next day like curries and my partner and I think this fab dish is one of them! I serve with Harissa and yoghurt. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

  13. I made this for my father, who is definitely not a vegetarian. It was so filling that he didn't even make a joke about wanting some meat. :) Excellent, and beloved by all who ate it!

  14. Would this recipe freeze ahead and reheat well?

  15. Savannah ~ Hmmm, no I don't think so, I have the idea that the vegetables would break down and get mushy if frozen.

  16. AnonymousJuly 22, 2012

    Made this in the crockpot today, on high 4 hrs. Came out great!

  17. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  18. Love to see old dishes come back! Tagines are wonderful, although I've had many more meat-based ones than veggie. Love the combo of flavors in this. Maybe add a bit of cumin and coriander? Such a fun dish to play with! Thanks.


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe, whether a current recipe or a long-ago favorite. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. ~ Alanna