Steamed Pumpkin and Baby Bok Choy with Ginger Sesame Sauce (Vegan, Paleo)

Red kuri squash (Hokkaido pumpkin) and baby bok choy are lightly steamed and served with a ginger sesame sauce in this easy fall and winter side dish.

steamed bok choy with sesame sauce

It’s officially pumpkin season.  While winter, spring and summer each offers their own unique array of fruits and vegetables, during the fall pumpkins reign supreme.

Right at this moment people everywhere are going crazy over pumpkin bread and lattes and pretty much anything you can flavor with pumpkin. We’re confronted with massive displays of various squash and pumpkins at the farmers’ markets and grocery stores as well.  Seems like everywhere you turn there they are; there’s no escaping it, it is pumpkin mania out there.

pumpkin, red kuri squash, hokkaido pumpkin

And while I do love a good pumpkin pie or pumpkin bread, when it comes to the ubiquitous winter squash I tend to lean towards the savory side.

I’m particularly fond of red Kuri pumpkins (also known as Hokkaido pumpkin); their sweet, firm flesh has a subtle nuttiness to it.  Its delicate taste is further accented by more assertive flavors like garlic, red pepper and ginger.  I give mine a quick steam along with some tender baby bok choy and dress the whole thing with an Asian inspired sesame ginger sauce.  The silky sweet and delicate flavors of both shine through beautifully in this simple preparation

If you’ve never tried steaming pumpkin before it’s really quite quick and easy and makes for a meltingly tender result.  Each slice comes out of the steamer completely fork tender in less than 15 minutes, ready to soak up the spicy ginger and sesame infused sauce.

baby bok choy, red kuri squash, hokkaido pumpkin, pumpkin and bok choy with ginger sesame sauce

This is the kind of dish that’s well suited for this time of year that practically necessitates the cooking of pumpkins.  It’s quick enough to make any night of the week but would also make for an excellent alternative to more traditional side dishes for the holidays.

What’s your favorite pumpkin recipe?

Serves Serves 4 to 6

Steamed Pumpkin and Baby Bok Choy with Ginger Sesame Sauce Recipe (Vegan, Paleo)

Red kuri squash and baby bok choy are lightly steamed and served with a ginger sesame sauce for an easy Asian inspired side dish.

10 minPrep Time

15 minCook Time

25 minTotal Time

Save Recipe


  • 2 Tablespoons/30ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons/10ml toasted sesame oil
  • 3 Tablespoons/45ml of coconut aminos (or gluten-free tamari)
  • 1 inch piece of peeled fresh ginger, finely grated
  • 1 to 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • A pinch of red pepper flakes (about 1/8th teaspoon or more depending on how spicy you want it)
  • 4 heads baby bok choy, halved or quartered lengthwise
  • 1 small kuri pumpkin, seeded, peeled and cut into thin slices
  • 1 Tablespoon/7g of toasted sesame seeds


  1. In a small saucepan or skillet, whisk together the olive oil, sesame oil, coconut aminos, grated ginger and garlic and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Heat gently until warm, cover and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet or sauté pan fitted with a steamer basket , bring an inch or two of water to a boil. Add the pumpkin slices reduce to a simmer and cover and cook until tender (about 8 to 10 minutes depending on the thickness of your slices).
  3. Remove the pumpkin slices and place on a large platter. Add the bok choy to the steamer basket and cover and cook until fork-tender (about 4 to 5 minutes).
  4. Transfer bok choy to the serving platter; drizzle with the reserved ginger sesame mixture, top with toasted sesame seeds and serve immediately.


Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Vegetarian, Vegan, Paleo


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  1. says

    I love hokkaidos… and their beautiful red-orange color…and I loooooooove to put ginger into nearly everything.

    I’m over saturated with sugary pumpkins as well, but I have almost always eaten pumpkins as savories. I’m making a chili tonight with pumpkin and (hopefully) homemade paneer and maybe some latkes for sunday brunch.

  2. says

    Honestly I don’t know if I’ve ever had pumpkin in a savory dish before – but this looks and sounds SO good and comforting and fresh, all at the same time. Pinned it for dinner next week 😉

  3. says

    There simply aren’t enough savory pumpkin recipes out there. So glad to see this one. I love the color contrast on the dish too. Beautiful to look at and delicious to eat, I’m sure!

  4. says

    Somehow I have ended up with tons tons of pumpkin lately and I have been looking for recipes beyond cakes and lattes – this looks perfect specially because I love bok chou.