Hearty Vegetarian Gyros with Butternut Squash Even Meat Lovers Will Love

A butternut squash gyro recipe, excerpted from the cookbook Fraiche Food Fuller Hearts by Jillian Harris and Tori Wesszer

Finding wholesome, hearty plant-based meals that are approved by everyone is not always easy. One day Jillian tried a vegan spin on gyros, a Greek dish traditionally made with roasted meat served in a folded pita. Rather than filling them with the traditional meat, Jillian decided to fill hers with roasted butternut squash, and they were an instant hit with her family! Both the kids and Justin loved these squash gyros, and they have since earned a permanent slot in their dinner rotation.

Butternut Squash Gyros

Vegetarian • Vegan option • Gluten-free option • Nut-free
Serves 4
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes


Butternut Squash Filling

  • 1 medium butternut squash (2½ pounds/1.125 kg), peeled
  • and cut into ½-inch (1 cm) cubes (6½ cups/1.625 mL)
  • 3 tablespoons (45 mL) avocado oil or vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) sweet paprika
  • ½ teaspoon (2 mL) salt
  • ¼ teaspoon (1 mL) pepper


  • 1 English cucumber, diced
  • 2 tomatoes, diced
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) finely diced red onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) chopped fresh dill, plus more for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon (15 mL) pickled red onion brine or white vinegar
  • Salt

Garlic Dill Sauce

  • 1 cup (250 mL) plain full-fat Greek yogurt or non-dairy plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) mayonnaise or vegan mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) fresh lemon juice
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon (15 mL) chopped fresh dill
  • Pinch of salt

For serving

  • 4 large Greek pitas
  • Olive oil, for toasting the pita
  • Pickled red onions
  • Feta cheese or vegan feta cheese, crumbled (optional)
  • Fresh dill

Vegan: Use non-dairy yogurt, vegan mayonnaise, and vegan feta cheese.
Gluten-free: Use gluten-free Greek pitas.


  1. Make the butternut squash filling: Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the squash, avocado oil, coriander, cumin, gar- lic powder, paprika, salt, and pepper. Toss to mix well. Spread the squash mixture evenly on the prepared baking sheet. Roast until the squash is golden brown and tender, about 30 minutes, tossing halfway through.
  3. Meanwhile, make the salad: In a medium bowl, mix together the cucumber, tomatoes, red onion, garlic, olive oil, dill, and pickled red onion brine. Season with salt.
  4. Make the garlic dill sauce: In a small bowl, stir together the yogurt, mayonnaise, lemon juice, garlic, dill, and salt.
  5. Assemble the gyros: Heat a dry medium nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat. Working with 1 pita at a time, drizzle a little olive oil on each side and heat in the pan until lightly toasted, about 1 minute per side.
  6. In the centre of each pita, layer the roasted butternut squash, salad, Garlic Dill Sauce, Pickled Red Onions, and a sprinkle of feta , if using. Garnish with the dill and fold the sides together.

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Excerpted from Fraiche Food Fuller Hearts by Jillian Harris and Tori Wesszer. Copyright © 2023 Jillian Harris and Tori Wesszer. Photography by Rachelle Beatty. Published by Penguin, an imprint of Penguin Canada, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

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