Wholesome Butternut Squash, Mushroom & Kale Stew: Plant-based on a Budget

This butternut squash, mushroom and kale recipe is the second recipe in my ‘Plant-based on a budget’ series. As requested via facebook it’s a wholesome stew, which is perfect for the cold autumn weather.

All of the ingredients in this tomato stew came from Aldi and 3 are from the ‘super 6’ (six seasonal fruit or vegetables from UK suppliers sold at a really low price- this week it is 55p per pack).

SUPER 6 ( 23rd OCTOBER – 23rd NOVEMBER 2016): butternut squash, chestnut mushrooms, shredded kale, asparagus, fun sized apples, satsumas.

butternut squash, mushroom and kale stew vegan recipe

Let’s talk about kale.

Let’s talk about kale because I think it’s probably the ingredient that most people will be unsure about.  Kale is a great addition to a plantbased diet because it is very nutrient dense. It has extremely high levels of vitamin K and excellent levels of vitamin A and C. Did you know one cup of kale has your daily recommended level of vitamin K and more vitamin C than an orange!

Kale does have quite a strong flavour, that’s why I like to add it into stews along with tomatoes and spices to tone down the taste. Also I find it quite hard to eat raw kale, which is another reason why I like to add it to a stew.

chickpea vegan stew with butternut squash mushroom kale

I actually find it very hard to get through a whole bag of kale before it goes off so I usually freeze about half on the day I buy it. It will happily sit in your freezer for a good few months and you can add it to stews or smoothies without having to defrost it first. If you don’t have enough space in the freezer you can blend the kale with a bit of water and then pour it into an ice cube tray and freeze it, although I wouldn’t recommend using the kale ices cube in this stew.


butternut squash, mushroom and kale stew recipe

Serves 2
5 of your 5-a-day


  • ½ butternut squash (1 for 55p = 27.5p)
  • 1 can chickpeas (1 for 33p)
  • 1 box passata (1 for 35p)
  • 1 cup sweetcorn (1 can for 35p = 17.5p)
  • 8 chestnut mushrooms (1 pack for 55p = 45p)
  • 2 handfuls of kale (1 bag for 55p = 20p)
  • 2 tsp parprika (1 for 49p = 10p)
  • 1 tsp chilli powder (1 for 49p = 5p)
  • 1 tsp turmeric (1 for 49p = 5p)
 Total Price= £1.98/ 2 = 99p!
To be honest I think I slightly over estimated the cost of the spices, so maybe a few pence less.


  1. Lay the butternut squash on your chopping board and cut it in half downwards. Turn it on its end and chop off the skin. Next grate it into a large pan. You should have about 2 cups once it’s grated.
  2. Add the passata and stir in the spices then heat on medium for 15 minutes.
  3. Peel the skin off the mushrooms and chop them into quarters. Add them to the pan and stir.
  4. Drain and rinse the chick peas then add them to the pan. Cook for 10 minutes.
  5. Finally add the sweetcorn and kale and cook for a further 3-5 minutes until the kale has wilted.
  6. Taste the stew and see if you want to add any more spices. Don’t taste it at the beginning because raw butternut squash tastes weird and you will think the stew is going to turn out horrible- but trust me it will be nice once it’s cooked!

Use the rest of your …
butternut squash in overnight oats or in lettuce wraps.
kale in a smoothie.
mushrooms on a salad with this almond butter dressing.

Let me know in the comments what you would like to see me make in the ‘plant-based on a budget series. I have requests for pizza (!), cookies, cake and a Christmas dinner!! Challenge accepted on those. Can you think of anything else?


  1. October 28, 2016 / 12:01 am

    I’d be really interested in gluten free baking on a budget. I’m not gluten free but lots of my friends are, and lots of gluten free products seem pretty expensive. Love this recipe!

    • Heathy & Psyched
      October 28, 2016 / 8:27 am

      Okay great, I will have a think. I’m not sure what Aldi does in the way of gluten free flours. I got some gluten free oats from their a while ago but they were just a one off special. I’ll see what I can do. Thanks so much for your comment x

    • Heathy & Psyched
      November 2, 2016 / 8:42 am

      Thanks 🙂

  2. Robin
    October 1, 2017 / 7:11 pm

    What’s passata?

    • Heathy & Psyched
      October 1, 2017 / 7:26 pm

      Hi Robin, It’s basically like pureed tomatoes, but less thick than the stuff that you buy in a tube. It should be in the section of the supermarket with the tinned chopped tomatoes. You could also use the tinned chopped tomatoes if you wanted to.

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