09/29/2015 07:00 am ET Updated Sep 15, 2016

The Butternut Squash Recipes You've Been Waiting For

It's going to be a delicious season.

It’s a bittersweet feeling when fall produce starts to take over summer’s bounty; there’s a lot that we will miss (all those tomatoes, for one). But the silver lining of this seasonal transition is the arrival of our favorite gourd, the butternut squash.

Butternut squash is sweet enough to go into desserts, but also a natural in hearty dishes, like soups, gratins and lasagnas. Roasted butternut squash can turn a plain salad into something we’ll happily bite into; and it can lend a vegetarian creaminess to dishes like risotto and ravioli.

If you find butternut squash’s tough skin intimidating, fear not, we’ve got a trick that’ll help you peel butternut squash with ease ― it requires nothing more than a microwave ― plus seven additional hacks that might help you, too. Once you’ve got peeling mastered, we’re sure this orange-fleshed gourd will be your go-to vegetable for the coming fall and winter ― especially with the help of these recipes below.