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Butternut Squash, Italian Sausage, and Turnip Green Gratin

Author: Gwen Adams

Butternut Squash, Italian Sausage, and Turnip Green Gratin Recipe

This creative take on fall flavors comes from Vivian Howard, of Chef & the Farmer in North Carolina. Her casserole features a rich, cheese-laced sauce that surrounds sweet roasted squash, hearty turnip greens, and lightly spiced sausage for an immensely satisfying dish with a down-home touch.

At a glance

9" x 13" casserole, 12 servings
Nutrition information


Choose your measure:


  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 cups chopped leeks, white part and some of the green
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 cups grated or shredded fontina cheese
  • 1/3 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground or grated nutmeg


  • 1 pound bulk Italian sausage, sweet or hot
  • 6 cups peeled, diced butternut squash
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more for the blanching water
  • 1 bunch (about 1 pound) turnip greens, stems removed
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter (for the pan)
  • 1 1/2 cups cubed fontina cheese


  • 4 cups (1 loaf) sourdough bread, cut in 1/2" cubes
  • 1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  1. To make the sauce: In a 10" to 12" sauté pan over medium heat, melt the butter and add the leeks and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Cook for about 5 minutes, until softened and translucent. Stir in the flour. Cook for about 1 minute, then stir in the milk. Once the milk begins to boil, whisk in the cheeses. Cook the mixture, stirring frequently, until it's the consistency of thick gravy. Stir in the remaining salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Set aside.
  2. To make the filling: Preheat the oven to 375°F. Remove the sausage from its casing and brown it in a 12" skillet. Drain and set aside. Toss the diced butternut squash with the sugar, 2 tablespoons olive oil, and the 1/2 teaspoon salt. Spread the squash on a baking sheet and roast on the middle rack of your oven for about 40 minutes, checking it periodically. The squash is ready when it turns golden brown and is easily smashed with a fork. Leave the oven on, you'll be using it again.
  3. Remove the large stems from the turnip greens. Bring a large pot of heavily salted water up to a boil and set up an ice bath nearby. Blanch the turnip greens for about 30 seconds, then shock them in the ice bath. Once the greens are completely cool, drain them well and wrap them in a clean dish towel to wring out additional water. Roughly chop the greens.
  4. Butter a 9" x 13" baking dish. Spoon in the greens, cooled squash, sausage, and cubed fontina. Stir to combine. Pour the sauce on top. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 15 minutes.
  5. To make the topping: Toss the cubed bread with the Pecorino Romano, olive oil, and salt, and spread it on top of the casserole. Bake an additional 15 minutes, or until the bread is toasted and the sides of the casserole are bubbly.
  6. Remove the casserole from the oven, and serve it hot or warm. Refrigerate any leftovers for up to several days.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size 200g
  • Servings Per Batch 12 servings
Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories 412
  • Calories from Fat 252
  • Total Fat 28g
  • Saturated Fat 12g
  • Trans Fat 0g
  • Cholesterol 82mg
  • Sodium 922mg
  • Total Carbohydrate 20g
  • Dietary Fiber 1g
  • Sugars 5g
  • Protein 16g

* The nutrition information provided for this recipe is determined by the ESHA Genesis R&D software program. Substituting any ingredients may change the posted nutrition information.