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Recipe: Lacto-fermented Spiced Winter Squash

Winter squash softens during fermentation to a just-crisp, brightly colored, sweet and sour snack.


  • 2 lbs. winter squash. Butternut, sugar pumpkin or other smooth skin squash is easier to prepare
  • Filtered or spring water
  • 2 Tbsp. sea salt
  • 2 sticks cinnamon (approx 3” each)
  • 10-15 whole cloves
  • 3-inch knob of fresh ginger, sliced thin


  1. Using a large, sharp knife, cut the stem end and bottom from the squash. Set the squash on a stable cutting surface and cut off the outer peel with the knife. Save one piece of the peel. This will act as a starter. Cut the squash in half and remove the seeds and fibers from the center.
  2. Chop the squash into 1 inch cubes and place in the fermenting jar. Include the saved piece of peel from the last step. Add the remaining ingredients and shake to mix. Press weights on top of the squash to keep them submerged.
  3. Allow to ferment for at least 1 week at room temperature. Ferment longer for softer, stronger tasting squash.

At A Glance

PREP: 7 days
COOK: 20 minutes
TOTAL: 7 days, 20 minutes
YIELD: Makes 2 lbs. of squash.