This savory roasted acorn squash is seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic and fresh thyme and roasted to perfection. It makes a lovely side for just about any main dish.
I’ve never met a squash I didn’t like and lately I’ve been on a roll with all the winter squash recipes. There are just so many different varieties and ways to prepare squash… it’s been fun to experiment. My latest winter squash adventure was with acorn squash.
Acorn squash is often served as a sweet dish, usually steamed in the oven with butter, cinnamon and some sort of sugar. I love it like this for acorn squash yogurt bowls, but my favorite way to enjoy acorn squash is by slicing it and roasting it up with savory seasonings. With roasting, the texture of the squash feels a bit more dense (less stringy), the squash is more flavorful and the skin gets nice and soft.
Yes, you can technically eat the skin of acorn squash. It tends to get pretty soft and is quite easy to eat once roasted. That said, I personally find the skin of acorn squash to be thicker and less enjoyable to eat than the skin of delicata squash or kabocha squash so I tend to take it off. The good news is that even if you don’t want to eat the skin, there’s no need to peel the squash before cooking because it easily peels right off after roasting. And to be honest, peeling an acorn squash before cooking is no easy feet because of the ridges. That said, it’s totally possible to peel an acorn squash before cooking if you have the patience. If you know you want to peel it, you can always look for an acorn squash that doesn’t have deep ridges to make it easier.
As with most squashes, there are a variety of ways to cook acorn squash! You can steam it, bake it, roast it and even grill it! Depending on how you’re using it, each option can be good! I personally think it tastes best roasted so that’s the recipe I’m sharing here!
Prep the squash – wash and dry your acorn squash. Cut the squash in half from top to bottom, just beside the stem. Use a spoon to remove the seeds and stringy innards from both halves. Cut off the tough stems (from the top and bottom of the squash), peel the squash if desired and then cut into 1″ thick slices.
Season – Place the acorn squash in a large bowl. Add the oil, salt, pepper, garlic and thyme. Toss to coat the squash.
Bake – Arrange squash on a rimmed sheet pan, making sure the squash isn’t overlapping. Roast at 400ºF for 40 minutes. Flip each slice over around the 20 minute mark, then bake for an additional 20 minutes or until the squash is soft and golden. Sprinkle with crushed red pepper, flaked sea salt and more fresh thyme before serving if desired.
One of my favorite things about squash is that you can take the flavor any direction you want! It’s naturally sweeter so pairs well with sweet options but also pairs well with savory and spicy seasonings. Here are some different variations to try out!
If you make this roasted acorn squash, please be sure to leave a comment and star rating below. Your feedback is super helpful for the EBF team and other readers who are thinking about making the recipe.