Coal Roasted Butternut Squash

In Foil Packet Recipes

Roasting butternut squash right in the coals not only makes for a tasty meal, it’ll get everybody talking about how awesome of a campfire chef you are.

Sometimes we all need a little validation.

The ease of this recipe is also a benefit.

Coal Roasted Butternut Squash

  • Prep Time:  1 Minute
  • Cook Time:  1 Hour
  • Serves:  4 people, as a side


  • 2 butternut squash
  • 4 tbs. butter
  • 2 tbs. dark brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Ingredients for Butternut Squash in Coals

Equipment Needed at the Campsite:

  • Heat resistant BBQ gloves
  • Small skillet (I used my 8″ cast iron skillet for this recipe)
  • Large knife for cutting the squash in half
  • Spoon for removing seeds
  • Shovel or some other tool to spread out the coals in your fire pit

Before You Leave Home

Since this recipe is about as simple as you can get, there isn’t really much prepwork that can be done before you head out.

Measuring out your butter and brown sugar and putting them into separate resealable bags will save you a little space in your cooler and a little time at the campsite.

Cooking Your Butternut Squash at the Campsite

Before you get started cooking, you’re going to need to have a good bed of coals going. Let your fire go for about an hour, then spread your coals out in a thin layer with a shovel.

You don’t want your coal bed to be too hot, so an inch thin layer should suffice.

Be sure, with long cook times like this, that you keep some fresh wood going in the fire. You want to be certain that you’ll have fresh coals throughout the entire cook time.

Once your coals are ready, just put your butternut squash right on top.

Roasting Butternut Squash Directly in Coals

As your butternut squash roasts, reach in on occasion and turn them so that all sides are cooked evenly. Watch for hot-spots (where the squash appears to be getting darker in certain spots than others) and be sure to turn it to avoid that particular spot cooking faster than others.

This is where those insulated BBQ gloves come in handy. Using a stick or tongs to try to turn your squash will end up gashing them or peeling off the outer layer.

The squash will look terrible, like they’re burnt to a crisp, but I assure you, they’re just fine. Keep at it.

The Butternut Squash Will Look Burnt

These weren’t quite done at this point. Back in the fire for another ten minutes or so.

About ten minutes before its time to take your squash out of the fire pit, put the butter in your pan and get it hot enough that it completely melts. Add the brown sugar to the melted butter and heat until it is also melted, stirring occasionally.

You don’t need to get your butter/brown sugar mixture boiling. It just needs to get hot enough to melt the brown sugar into the butter.

Melting Butter and Brown Sugar Mixture for Roasted Butternut Squash

To test to see if your squash is finished roasting, poke it all the way to the center with a knife or skewer. If it is soft all the way through, its ready to take out.

Don’t poke the fatter end of the squash to test it. This is the side with the seeds. It will feel soft due to the open area with the seeds not giving any resistance. The narrow side will also cook more slowly than the fatter side due to its density.Test doneness in the narrow side of the squash

Once they appear to be done, take them out and cut each longways down the center and scoop out the seeds with a spoon.

Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste, drizzle with the butter/brown sugar mixture, and serve.

Coal Roasted Butternut Squash

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Coal Roasted Butternut Squash
Prep Time
1 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 1 min

Course: Side Dish
Servings: 4 people
  • 2 butternut squash
  • 4 tbs. butter
  • 2 tbs. dark brown sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste
Equipment Needed at the Campsite
  • Heat resistant BBQ gloves
  • Small skillet
  • Large knife
  • Spoon
  • Shovel
Before You Leave Home
  1. Put butter and brown sugar in separate resealable bags.

Cooking at the Campsite
  1. Build a good bed of coals.

  2. Place butternut squash on a medium-hot bed of coals.

  3. Cook, turning occasionally to avoid hot-spot and to char on all sides.  About an hour.

  4. Ten to fifteen minutes before the squash is done, heat the butter until melted (but, not boiling) in skillet.

  5. Add brown sugar to melted butter.  Cook until melted. Don't boil.

  6. Test to see if squash is done by inserting metal probe or small knife. If the squash appears soft all the way through, then remove from coals.

  7. Slice squash down the middle longways and remove seeds with a spoon.

  8. Add salt and pepper to taste and drizzle with the butter/brown sugar mixture. Serve.

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