Chayote squash is having its day in the sun as of late, but it’s been used for centuries in Latin American cooking and baking. The chayote squash (also known as mirliton squash) is a mild-tasting, relatively low carb, and versatile fruit with a good dose of vitamin C. Because of its hardness, you’ll definitely want to eat it cooked, but the end result will be worth it: a tender but slightly crisp fruit that bears a resemblance to pear or jicama and that takes on the particular flavors of any recipe—sweet or savory.
Note: there’s a little extra prep involved with chayote, but we think the additional few minutes are well worth the approximately 50 grams of carbs spared (full recipe).
Time In the Kitchen: 20 minutes
5 cups chayote squash
1 tbsp cream of tartar
5 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup Swerve (or equivalent of favorite sugar-free sweetener (e.g. monk fruit, etc.)
Prep the squash. (This video has a good rundown of the process.) In a nutshell, cut the top inch off the fruit and let the liquid bubble up on the exposed flesh of the fruit. Rub the cut top piece over the exposed area for a full minute to draw up and out more liquid. This will create a froth as pictured. After the full minute, wipe off this froth with a clean paper towel. (Although the liquid/froth is completely safe, it may cause a mild tingly feeling if you get it on your fingers.)
Cut the fruit in half and remove the seed, along with the white flesh directly around it.
Cut squash into 1/4 inch slices.
Place in pot along with cinnamon, arrowroot or cream of tartar, lemon juice and sweetener. Cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes so that the squash starts to become tender.
Pour into ramekins.
Put all the crumble topping ingredients into a food processor and pulse until the butter is well incorporated and it looks good and crumbly.
Pour over top of squash.
Bake 30 minutes (or 45 minutes if baking as an 8-inch pie)
Mark Sisson is the founder of Mark’s Daily Apple, godfather to the Primal food and lifestyle movement, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Keto Reset Diet. His latest book is Keto for Life, where he discusses how he combines the keto diet with a Primal lifestyle for optimal health and longevity. Mark is the author of numerous other books as well, including The Primal Blueprint, which was credited with turbocharging the growth of the primal/paleo movement back in 2009. After spending three decades researching and educating folks on why food is the key component to achieving and maintaining optimal wellness, Mark launched Primal Kitchen, a real-food company that creates Primal/paleo, keto, and Whole30-friendly kitchen staples.