Spicy Turkey Curry with Acorn Squash

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With the holiday season approaching, it is the perfect time to get together with family and friends and prepare showstopping dishes. Try this Spicy Turkey Curry served over basmati brown rice in an acorn squash. While it may sound technical, it is quite easy and perfect to serve to a large number of guests. This recipe features Canadian turkey, which really highlights the garam masala flavour used in this recipe. The spice pairs perfectly with the slight sweetness of the acorn squash.

The key to a successful holiday family event is to plan. Finding meal solutions that will help you easily feed a crowd is the best way to prepare for a holiday get-together. I used Canadian turkey breast in this recipe that was actually from whole turkey I sectioned for Thanksgiving! 

Here are ways to plan this recipe for Spicy Turkey Curry served over basmati brown rice in an acorn squash:

  • Use a whole turkey and section it to make multiple dishes or buy turkey breast.
  • Bake the acorn squash in advance.
  • Make the basmati rice in advance.
  • On the day of, make the Garam Masala Turkey Curry and assemble the dish with the acorn squash, basmati rice, and curry. Place in preheated oven to heat through the whole dish. Remove from oven just before serving.

Spicy Turkey Curry with Basmati Brown Rice Stuffed in Acorn Squash

Makes: 6 servings (½ acorn squash)


  • 3 acorn squash, cut in half and de-seeded
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1 Tbsp ginger garlic paster
  • 1 Tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp red chili flakes
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1lb turkey breast, chopped
  • 1 pepper, diced
  • 4oz mushrooms, sliced
  • 14 oz diced tomatoes
  • ½ cup water


  • Preheat oven to 350oF. Place halved acorn squashes on baking sheet lined with parchment paper with the cut side facing up. Sprinkle with salt and drizzle with olive oil. Place acorn squash cut side facing down and bake for 40 minutes, until easily pierced with a fork and soft.
  • In a large saucepan, heat oil on medium-high heat. Add onions and cook for 2-3 minutes until translucent.
  • Add ginger garlic paste and spices and stir.
  • Add turkey breast, mix together, and cook for about 5 minutes until turkey is slightly brown but isn’t fully cooked.
  • Add pepper, mushrooms, diced tomatoes, and water. Cover and cook for 10 minutes.
  • Remove cover and cook for another 10 minutes on high heat. The curry will be ready when the water has reduced into a thick gravy.
  • To serve: In each acorn squash half, spoon ½ cup brown basmati rice and ½ cup turkey curry. If squash and rice are not warm, place on baking sheet and heat through in preheated oven before serving.

If you are looking forward to entertaining at home this holiday season, be sure to try these 8 great tips to entertain-at-home like a pro:


1. Plan on serving dishes that can be made in advance (like this turkey curry served in acorn squash!).  Crowd-pleasing favourites like casseroles, pastas and stews featuring turkey can be made ahead of time and just re-heated gently to serve.

2. Help your guests avoid the dreaded ‘crash’ that follows a heavy meal and think about serving lighter fare.  Turkey makes a great feature meal, feeding a crowd with big flavour while being a leaner, lighter choice.

3. Consider building your party around a series of appetizers.  There are many recipes that can be made ahead of time so that you’re ready when guests arrive.  Finger foods also mean using less dishes and cutlery, saving time when it comes to clean up.

4. Experiment with something other than a formal sit down.  A buffet style meal encourages grazing throughout the night, mingling while guests eat and chat, and allows for a more social and relaxed feel.  Choose foods that taste great at room temperature, like a stuffed turkey breast or turkey casserole.

5. Get your guests in on the action by hosting a potluck.  You provide the crowd-pleasing main dish, like a whole roasted turkey, and then have your guests bring a selection of appetizers, salads and desserts.  Guests love to contribute and this will help take the heat off of you.

6. Turkey makes a fantastic substitute in any of your favourite party dishes.   Think about ground turkey, turkey breast or turkey sausage in any of your go-to appetizers and mains.

7. Use your handy crock-pot to help you make a crowd-pleasing dish ahead of time.  Canadianturkey.ca is filled with crock-pot and make-ahead inspiration.  A bonus you’ll love with the crock pot? You can heat and serve all in the same container!

8. Save on the big meal by skipping the beef tenderloin or prime rib and opting for a less expensive cut of meat.  A whole turkey will feed a large crowd for just a few dollars per person, making it a budget-friendly choice!

Looking for additional tips, recipes, Turkey Basics videos and HOWTOs? Visit canadianturkey.ca for all your cooking inspiration.

Canadian Turkey makes your holiday season easy with all the festive recipe suggestions and turkey prep tips you need.

The Year Round Whole Turkey HOW TOs section will help you prepare a whole Canadian turkey for your friends and family for any occasion.  And the recipe section is filled with delicious recipes for whole turkey and turkey cuts so you can get tasty, nutritious and versatile turkey on your table every day!

If you make this recipe, be sure to share on Instagram and tag @Masalamomamas and use the hashtag #tryturkeytoday

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