Winter squash is a delicious ingredient that can be used in a variety of comforting dishes, but recipes never include the much-needed preparation instructions.

The outside is so tough that it is often used as resourceful cookware when baking sweet or savory dishes. Understanding the correct way to break open the peel and cube the solid flesh of winter squash is going to make year-round cooking a lot easier.

Butternut squash should be microwaved for a couple of minutes before removing the outer layer with an ordinary vegetable peeler to prepare for chopping.

The delecata is one of the softest varieties so it’s easy to simply cut it in half and slice the cleaned insides into quarter-inch strips. Acorn squash is similar because it’s smarter to cut it in half than to waste time with a peeler.

The size and shape make it great for stuffing instead of chopping it into cubes or strips.

Pumpkin is a very popular and versatile ingredient, yet most people don’t have a proper technique for preparing the flesh.

Remove the top and bottom with a knife so that it is sturdy enough to start peeling away the durable skin. Spaghetti squash is often roasted alone after being split in half with a knife because the cooked fruit is going to soften into edible strands.

The toughest in the bunch is the odd kabucha or turban squash that is almost impossible to cut into. It’s recommended to use a very sharp knife instead of a peeler, and have a lot of patience because it will take a lot of effort.

Always remember to scoop out the guts and seeds of any squash to fully prepare it for cooking. ´