(A Little Bit of) Squash Heaven

Dear fellow-dieters,

Here’s the bad news. My weight has been gradually inching in the wrong direction (along with my hips!) even though my thyroid is fine and I’m tracking my food, staying within plan, and exercising 3-5 days a week.

So, yesterday at the WW weigh-in, I brought in my food tracker so the leader could see that I was a faithful dieter who should be losing weight. The diagnosis? Too many carbs among the fruit, cereal, and baked goods that I ate.

Some people, the leader said, can’t throw off carbs easily, adding that she was one of them and I was clearly another. I can’t print here what I thought about that (several not-nice words came to mind.). But I clearly need a carb-rev-up button. Is there anyone else out there who considers their body Enemy Numero Uno?

The solution = vegetables, vegetables, and more vegetables.

The creative wheels began to turn, and I remembered those Spiced Sweet Potato Rounds. Why not add that wonderful spice blend to cooked, mashed winter squash instead? The result was a vegetable

  • Lower in calories/carbs than sweet potatoes
  • As filling as sweet potatoes
  • Equally delicious!

Voilà! (A Little Bit of) Squash Heaven. Truly.

Yours in the uphill climb,


P.S. Re the photo: I was trying for a sprinkled paprika topping, but got a little carried away.

Note: You can use any winter squash in this recipe. I used buttercup squash.


  • 2-3 cups winter squash, cooked and mashed
  • 1½ tbsp. brown sugar (I used Splenda’s Brown Sugar Blend.)
  • ½ tsp. salt (Use kosher salt if you have it.)
  • ½ tsp. ground cumin
  • ½ tsp. chili powder
  • ½ tsp. paprika
  • ¼ tsp. onion powder
  • ¼ tsp. garlic powder


  1. In a small bowl, mix spices sweetener, salt, and spices together.
  2. Put squash in a larger bowl and add spice mixture.
  3. Mix well. (I ended up using my hands; it was a Play-Doh moment.)
  4. Warm in microwave if necessary.

For Weight Watchers: The only item in this recipe with any value points is the sweetener. The entire recipe has  1.5 points for regular sugar and .75 points with the Splenda version.

4 thoughts on “(A Little Bit of) Squash Heaven

  1. I’m so sorry your weight has been inching up a little bit. That must be so frustrating. 😦 I’ve found my weight easier to manage when I’m lifting weights (because more muscle burns more fat and makes you leaner), doing interval-type workouts (like circuit workouts), and eating a source of protein with every meal. I’m sure you can get back on track though — especially with a delicious dish as this! Your squash heaven sounds divine!!! 🙂

    • Thanks so much for the supportive words and, you’re absolutely right, it is frustrating. Your exercise plan sounds great! At the moment, I do weights once or twice a week and aqua fit two to three times a week. I love weights…I only wish they’d had gyms like they do now when I was younger. Today I had roasted veggies nuked with some cheese on top for lunch…really filling, and I need to do something like that every day. Oh, and the squash is truly yummy. Keeping our fingers crossed, Claire 🙂

  2. I’m sorry you are having a bump in the road, but it will pass. I’m also having one — went up 1.2 this week; a combination of not getting enough walking, and my body having been screwed up by a surgeon a decade or so ago, which causes solids retention of up to 5 lbs., for up to a week at a time.

    The thing is, when we did celebrations at meeting, I was able to note that even though my “number” was up a bit, I had been able to start walking as much as six blocks without needing a cane, for the first time in a couple of years.

    So, I would say that the thing to do is to recognize the progress you have made so far, and you have already done the other part — made a plan for going forward.

    One of my favorite leaders, Robert, reframed plateaus in such a way that I have also been able to use his advice when I hit a bump in the road, so I will pass it on to you. He notes that if we hit a plateau when we go up a mountain, we are usually glad for the rest stop, and use it to see how far we’ve come and what we need to do to get the rest of the way to the top. He then notes that there is no reason we can’t use a plateau going down the mountain (losing weight) the same way.

    I know I’m rambling a bit, but I hope that’s helpful to you!

    • Oh, I love that version of the plateau…so much nicer than feeling like a hamster in a cage, running and getting nowhere! Thanks so much. And, please, don’t ever worry about rambling…I’ll take helpful, caring words wherever I can get them. 🙂 I really appreciate your commenting.

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