Butternut Apple Cranberry Sandwich Recipe

Butternut Apple Cranberry Sandwich

This sandwich is, quite simply, fall between bread. It’s stacked with roasted planks of butternut squash, a layer of thinly sliced apple, white cheddar cheese, rosemary, cranberries, arugula, and red cabbage that I quickly marinated in a little apple cider vinegar. It’s like one of those next-day leftover Thanksgiving sandwiches… that is, if you had a really colorful Thanksgiving.

I made these last Sunday when the leaves were falling, the sun was out, and the air was crisp. I don’t know if it’s that cozy fall chill in the air, but suddenly we’re eating more grains with our meals – hearty sandwiches like this with thick crusty bread, grain bowls with farro, and curries with quinoa.

Butternut Cranberry Apple Sandwiches

Speaking of grains, this post is in partnership with Panera. Why? Because they’re on a mission to get people to eat more whole grains by releasing a six-episode video series called Food Interrupted. The first episode, Grains Interrupted, follows culinary pioneers to a wheat field in Tehachapi, California where they talk about the importance of incorporating whole grains into your diet and what exactly a “whole” grain is. Plus, it’s beautiful, give it a watch!

Of course, we eat a ton of whole grains around here but many Americans aren’t getting enough high-quality whole grains in their diet, so Panera is committed to spreading the word about how important good quality grains are. It can be confusing what is actually considered a whole grain – to help this, Panera is launching new labels on their signage to note the servings and percentage of whole grains in their products. I’m personally inspired by this, because I love when large companies get on board to nudge our food system in the right direction.

Butternut Cranberry Apple Sandwiches

Back to the sandwich! You’ll want to find a large thick-necked butternut squash to be able to get these sandwich-sized planks. I saved the bottom part of my squash for soup because, if you haven’t noticed, I’ve been on a bit of a butternut kick this week.

And while I didn’t set out to make this a make-ahead sandwich, these components all kept well for lunches for two days in a row. The butternut planks can be reheated the next day and the cabbage will keep in the fridge for about a week. The only thing I sliced up twice was the apple. Slather thick slabs of grainy bread with mustard and/or mayo, assemble, and enjoy!

Butternut Cranberry Apple Sandwiches

Butternut Apple Cranberry Sandwich


  • 1 butternut squash, sliced into 8 ¼-inch planks (this is easiest if you get a thick-neck squash and use just the top half)
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • ½ teaspoon minced rosemary
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups shredded red cabbage
  • ⅓ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon maple syrup
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 slices of bread
  • Dijon mustard, for slathering
  • 4 slices white cheddar
  • 1 apple, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons dried cranberries
  • Few handfuls of arugula
  • Mayo, for slathering
  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss the squash planks with drizzles of olive oil, the rosemary, and sprinkles of salt and pepper. Roast 17 to 20 minutes or until golden brown around the edges.
  2. In a medium jar, place the cabbage, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, and pinches of salt and pepper. Cover and gently shake.
  3. Assemble the sandwiches with a slather of mustard, a slice of cheese, a few apple slices, 2 butternut squash planks, the cabbage, cranberries, and arugula. Slather the second slice of bread with mayo and top it onto the sandwich.


This post was created in partnership with Panera. Thank you for supporting the sponsors that keep us cooking!

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