Seared Scallops with Butternut Squash Puree and Sage Butter

Recipe by Lisa Zerdes, Weavers Way Member and Professional Pastry Chef


  • 1-½ pounds large sea scallops
  • 2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 stick of salted butter
  • 1 tbsp. water
  • Salt and pepper
  • ⅛ tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 tsp. minced fresh sage
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice

Serves: 4

This is an elegant meal that is really easy to prepare. Pairing the succulent sea scallops with velvety butternut squash puree is a perfect combination.

The squash can be steamed or roasted. Steam it for 20 minutes or until tender, or bake it at 425° for 30-40 minutes, depending on how big your pieces are.

The scallops should be dry when they hit the pan if you want to achieve nice browning.

A simple yet fragrant pan sauce of butter, shallots, fresh sage, and juices from the scallops ties the dish together.


  1. Steam or roast the butternut squash pieces according to the instructions above. Place the cooked butternut squash in a food processor and process until smooth. Add 1 tbsp. butter, 1 tbsp. water, and ⅛ tsp. cayenne pepper and process for an additional 30 seconds, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. If you don’t have a food processor, you can use a potato masher. Keep warm until ready to serve; alternatively, you can prep the squash a day ahead and heat it just before serving.
  2. Place the scallops on brown paper towels or a clean dish towel and pat dry to blot liquid. Let them come to room temperature for 10 minutes, then season them with salt and pepper.
  3. Heat 2 tbsp. butter in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat until the butter just begins to brown. Add half of the scallops in a single layer, flat side down, and cook without moving for 2 minutes. Flip them over and continue to cook, basting them with melted butter until their sides are firm and centers are opaque, 60-90 seconds. Remove smaller scallops as they finish cooking.
  4. Transfer the scallops to a large plate and keep them warm. Wipe the skillet clean with paper towels and repeat with 2 tbsp. butter and the remaining scallops. Transfer them to the plate.
  5. Wipe the skillet clean. Heat the remaining butter in your skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add shallot and sage and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in lemon juice and any accumulated juices.
  6. Spoon warm butternut squash puree on a plate, place scallops on top, and pour sauce over scallops. Enjoy!