Menu

How to Cook Chayote Squash (6 Methods)

If you’ve ever wondered how to cook chayote squash, this guide will open your eyes to the many delicious ways it can be prepared. Explore simple techniques for delivering a versatile veggie to your table.

Halved chayote squash

If you’re like me and chayote (also known as choko or mirliton) isn’t a native vegetable or common ingredient in your area, you may have wondered what exactly it is and how to cook it.

As I’ve learned about and tasted more chayote squash recipes, I’ve come to discover that it’s a really delicious and easy to prepare vegetable. It’s great for exploring international cuisines from Asia, Mexico, and India but also a wonderful ingredient to experiment with my own flavors.

This guide is designed to help you do the same. I’m sharing some of the most common ways of cooking chayote squash, plus tips on prepping and storing it, so you can have fun experimenting too.

How to Prepare Chayote

Preparing it is actually very easy. The entire squash is edible, including the peel and seed, so you can honestly just chop and cook if that’s what you want to do. But many recipes recommend you peel them first, mostly because the outside is slightly tougher than the flesh.

Peeling

Peel them just like a potato, with a knife or vegetable peeler. You may have to use a knife to carefully cut away the skin that grows inwards along the ridges if they’re deep on your squash.

Cutting

To cut and deseed the chayote, simply slice in half lengthwise. You can line your knife up with the bottom ridge as a guide.

Then just pop the seed out with a spoon and finish chopping it however your recipe calls for.

Fresh green chayotes

How to Cook Chayote Squash

Chayote is perfectly safe to eat raw, but also delicious when prepared using any of the techniques shared here. You can find a few of them detailed in the recipe card below if you’re eager to cook right away.

Roasted

Roasting chopped chayote is a great way to draw out natural sweetness from the caramelization that takes place in the oven. It’s an easy way to whip up a side dish too.

The options for seasonings are endless because the natural flavor is subtle enough to compliment a huge array of different spices. Toss it with seasoning blends before roasting, or just use simple salt and pepper, then serve it with a sauce instead.

One of my favorite ways to serve roasted chayote is with chimichurri. It’s so good I had to share how to make it below.

Sauteed

You’ll also find a recipe for sauteed chayote with onions below. Using a hot pan on the stove is one of the quickest ways to cook it and it draws out a very mellow, pleasant sweetness. Combined with tender onions, it’s always a satisfying side.

It only takes about five minutes to cook the squash to that perfect crisp-tender point. I definitely recommend trying this technique with your favorite sauces and seasonings.

Stir-Fried

A higher heat and faster method than a saute is to stir fry. Chayote is popularly used in many Asian stir-fried dishes paired with noodles, shrimp, pork, beef, or mushrooms.

A quick flash in a very hot pan will caramelize the outside but keep the firm bite. It takes on any flavors added to the dish and results in a fantastic crunchy, tender vegetable addition.

Grilled

Caramelization of the natural sugars in chayote and a hint of smokiness make grilling a really excellent way to cook it.

Coat it with oil, toss it with whatever seasonings you like, then grill it in thick slices, on skewers, or even just in halves. It takes about 10 to 15 minutes to get the chayote perfectly browned and tender, and then you can dig right in.

Stuffed

Stuffed chayote is one of the most popular ways to prepare it in Mexican cuisine and for a good reason. There are tons of different ways to load it with flavor.

It can be filled with grains like quinoa or rice, proteins like beef, pork, eggs, or beans, and then topped with cheese before baking. The result is a tender, flavorful squash with delicious fillings that become a meal all by themselves.

Boiled

One of my favorite ways to enjoy chayote is in salads. It can be added raw but I prefer to boil them whole first until they’re just tender enough to pierce, but still firm. It creates a really yummy texture when mixed with other crisp vegetables and fruits. That’s exactly what I did when making my delicious pickled chayote salad.

Chayote squash salad

But it’s totally okay to just slice it up raw for salads as well. The crisp, almost jicama-like texture is something many people enjoy. Another option is to lightly pickle it in a vinegar and sugar mixture to create a tangy, crisp bite.

Storage

Chayote is actually a great, long-lasting vegetable. You can keep it for two weeks or more in the refrigerator as long as you protect it from drying out. Simply wrap it up or put it into a container to keep it moist.

Once it’s peeled or cut, store it for up to 5 days at most. Keep it in an airtight container in the fridge to prevent it from absorbing any other flavors.

Chayote squash (vegetable pear) overhead shot

How long cooked chayote lasts will depend on the specific recipe and preparation. No matter what, store cooked food in the fridge.

Now that you know the ins and outs of cooking chayote squash, I hope you’ll be as inspired as I was. It’s a great way to try out ethnic flavors from around the world, and also happens to be a quick-cooking versatile veggie for any day of the week.

How to cook chayote featured photo

How to Cook Chayote Squash

Try two different ways of cooking chayote squash – sautéing or roasting and serving with Chimichurri sauce.
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 99kcal
Author: Jovita | Yummy Addiction

Ingredients

Roasted Chayote Squash with Chimichurri Sauce

  • FOR THE CHIMICHURRI SAUCE:
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic , chopped
  • ½ cup packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves , chopped
  • ½ cup packed fresh cilantro leaves , chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • FOR THE ROASTED CHAYOTES:
  • 3 lb. (1.4kg) chayote squash , peeled, pitted, and cut into chunks
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt , or to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper , or to taste

Sauteed Chayote Squash

  • 2 chayotes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or butter (or 1 tablespoon of each)
  • 1 medium red onion , thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic , minced
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • salt and ground black pepper , to taste
  • freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional)
  • chopped parsley leaves , for garnish

Instructions

Roasted Chayote Squash with Chimichurri Sauce

  • Chimichurri sauce. Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl. Let sit for 30 minutes before using.
  • Roasted chayotes. Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a large bowl, toss the chayote chunks with olive oil,salt, and pepper. Transfer to a baking sheet and roast for about 25 minutes (turn over halfway through), until tender and browned.
  • Remove from the oven and top with Chimichurri sauce.

Sauteed Chayote Squash

  • Peel the chayotes, cut in half lengthwise, and remove the pit. Place cut-side down onto a cutting board and slice thinly.
  • Heat the olive oil or butter in a skillet. Add the onion and cook for 3-5 minutes, until translucent. Add the garlic and cook 30 seconds more, until fragrant.
  • Add the sliced chayote squash, red pepper flakes (if using), salt, and pepper, and cook for 4-5 minutes more, until the chayote is fork tender. Drizzle with the lemon juice, garnish with parsley, and serve.

Nutrition

Calories: 99kcal | Carbohydrates: 9.1g | Protein: 1.4g | Fat: 7.2g | Sodium: 4mg | Sugar: 3.4g
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Chinese, Indian, Mexican
Keyword: chayote recipes, cooking chayote
Nutrition Facts
How to Cook Chayote Squash
Amount Per Serving
Calories 99 Calories from Fat 65
% Daily Value*
Fat 7.2g11%
Sodium 4mg0%
Carbohydrates 9.1g3%
Sugar 3.4g4%
Protein 1.4g3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

No Comments

    Leave a Reply

    Recipe Rating




    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.