This easy slow cooker butternut squash stew is made with hearty and warming pantry ingredients and requires no pre-cooking!

About this Butternut Squash Stew

Who else feels like they need a giant, warm, comforting bowl of soup right about now?

I know I do. 

We spent last week and weekend packing up our entire first floor and kitchen in preparation for a major renovation. 

I couldn’t be more excited to start work on what will be my dream kitchen, but in the meantime I’m slightly exhausted.

My parents are graciously allowing us to stay with them in their condo while the renovation happens, which is slated to last about 8 weeks.

Yep, that’s right, we’re crashing with my parents for 8 weeks.

I did my best to pack up all my photography supplies and props so I can carry on with posts, so I’m hoping I can get unpacked and back in the swing of recipe development over the next few days.

Luckily I worked on this dump-and-go slow cooker vegetarian stew before the move, and just looking at the photos again makes me want a giant bowl right this very minute.

It’s full of so many good things, and is substantial enough for a full meatless meal.

I personally love leftovers for lunch the next day, with an extra drizzle of olive oil and pinch of sea salt.

This combination of ingredients was inspired by this butternut squash stew recipe from Love & Lemons, which I wanted to adapt for the slow cooker so it can be be prepared ahead and enjoyed on busy weeknights.

For this recipe, you can use either vegetable stock (to keep it a vegetarian friendly meal) or chicken stock, also works great in this recipe.

I hope you enjoy this hearty, plant-based stew soon.

Now let’s make some Slow Cooker Butternut Squash, Kale & Quinoa Stew!

Recipe Adaptations

If someone you’re cooking for isn’t a fan of cooked kale, serve the person’s soup prior to adding the kale. Baby spinach can also be used in place of kale.

Serve with crusty bread for dunking.

If you eat dairy, sprinkle the soup with freshly grated parmesan cheese prior to serving.

This Recipe Is…

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5 stars (22 ratings)

Slow Cooker Butternut Squash, Kale & Quinoa Stew

A simple and delicious plant-based meal, Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Stew is hearty, nourishing and packed with all the good stuff.


  • 1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cups cubed butternut squash
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced or finely grated
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1-3 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 (15-oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 4 cups vegetable broth, or chicken stock
  • ½ cup dry quinoa

To Add at the End

  • 3 cups chopped kale
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • Fresh ground pepper, extra virgin olive oil, and parmesan (optional) for serving


  • Combine the onion, butternut squash, garlic, cumin, paprika, salt, tomatoes, broth and quinoa in the base of a 6-quart slow cooker, stirring to combine.
  • Cover and cook for 4 hours on high or 6 hours on low, or until the onions and butternut squash are very tender and cooked through.
  • Uncover, add the kale, cover, and cook on high for the kale to wilt, about 15-20 minutes.
  • Uncover and add the vinegar, stirring to combine. Taste and additional salt or vinegar if you like.
  • Serve, drizzled with extra virgin olive and freshly ground pepper.


Serve with crusty bread for dunking.
If you eat dairy, sprinkle the soup with freshly grated parmesan cheese prior to serving.
Adapted for the slow cooker from Butternut Squash, Kale and Quinoa Stew.

Nutrition Information:

Serving: 1(of 6), Calories: 117kcal, Carbohydrates: 23g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 2g, Saturated Fat: 0.2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0.3g, Sodium: 411mg, Potassium: 487mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 10877IU, Vitamin C: 48mg, Calcium: 136mg, Iron: 2mg
Nutrition disclaimer
Did you make this recipe?If you do, be sure to share it on Instagram and tag me at @realfoodwholelife so I can see!

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