Kabocha Squash can turn your kitchen into a fall food festival. With its bright orange color and rich, sweet delicious flavor, it can add a delightful dynamism to any meal. Learn below about its health benefits and how to find and cook it properly.
All squash is good for your health, but Kabocha Squash is my favorite because it tastes so good! Read about Squash the Powerfood.
5 Kabocha Squash Health Benefits
Excellent High Source of Beta-carotene
Beta-carotene converts to vitamin A in the body. Many of the Kabocha health benefits come from the benefits of vitamin A and the powerful antioxidant properties of beta-carotene.
1. Good for Healthy Eyes
Vitamin A is essential for good vision. Often poor sight at night and dry eyes are signs of a vitamin A deficiency according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.
One cup of Kabocha Squash has 93 percent of the amount of Vitamin A required for the day.
2. Helps Decrease Heart Disease
In a study of 1899 men aged 40 to 59 years, it was found that those with higher amounts of Vitamin A had a decreased risk of incident CHD. Kabocha squash is very high in vitamin A.
3. Good for Weight Loss – Low in carbohydrates
One cup of Kobocha Squash has only 40 calories compared to Butternut Squash, which has 60 calories.
4. May Help Fight Cancer
The American Institute for Cancer Research reports that squash may help fight cancer and heart disease while protecting your vision, immune system and skin.
5. Good for Healthy Skin
It is high in vitamin A. Research sited by the University of Maryland Medical Center has found vitamin A to be important for skin health and skin problems due to aging.
Kabocha Squash Trivia
It is known as Japanese squash. It is similar to Butternut Squash, but much sweeter. Its growing season lasts well through the winter.
Portuguese sailors took the Kabocha Squash with them from Cambodia to Japan in 1541. Their name for it was Cambodia abóbora and the Japanese shortened it to Kabocha.
- All the hard-shelled squashes are uniquely from the western hemisphere as far back as 3,000 BC. They were honored by the natives as being one of the ‘Three Sisters’ (Beans, Corn and Squash). These were sustenance foods for many of the ancient people.
- Europeans did not get to eat squash until after Columbus. In northern Europe they did not grow well as the climate was too cool and the summer season too short. France and Spain embraced the squash and created many unique varieties.
How to Buy and Store Kabocha Squash
- Look for a squat pumpkin shape with hard knobby looking skin.
- It weighs an average of three pounds and has spotted or blotchy dark green skin.
- Make sure the squash is not soft or pitted. The stem should be intact and look fresh also.
- Buy Kabocha at your farmers market grown locally and organically if possible, to be sure it has not traveled thousands of miles to get to you.
- Store up 1 – 3 months in a cool dry location that has good air circulation.
Tips for Eating or Cooking:
- Cooked Kabocha Squash texture is similar to that of a potato. It is delicious baked, steamed, stuffed or pureed.
- Works well as a substitution in recipes that call for pumpkin or sweet potatoes.
- Eat the peel! It is soft, delicious and makes preparing it easy as no peeling required.
- You can eat the seeds! They make a great snack food, just like pumpkin seeds.
- Soups can be thicken with Kabocha; mash up cooked Kabocha with a fork, then mix it in.
Here are two delicious kabocha squash recipes:
Kabocha Squash Soup: Every time I serve this my guestz ask for seconds.
Baked Squash With Vegetables: this is so easy: you can make this in just one pot.
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