Delicata squash is unique in that the skin is deliciously edible and soft when cooked, eliminating the need to peel. It also has a lovely natural sweetness that you can play up or down, depending on the seasonings you choose. For this recipe, we add some simple savory spices and a touch of local maple syrup for a perfectly balanced side dish that pairs well with any winter meal.
- 3 medium delicata squash (3 to 3 ½ pounds total)
- 3 tablespoons olive oil or avocado oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons local maple syrup
- 1-2 tablespoon butter, melted
- Preheat your oven to 425° F and place two sheet pans in the oven. Heating the pans before adding the squash creates a caramelized outer crust.
- Trim the ends off the squash, cut in half lengthwise, and scoop out the seeds. Place the squash cut side down and slice into ½-inch-thick half-moons.
- Transfer slices to a large bowl. Add oil, maple syrup, and spices and toss to evenly coat.
- Carefully remove the hot pans from the oven and arrange the squash in a single layer. Avoid overcrowding to ensure nice caramelization.
- Bake for 20 minutes, then remove the pans from the oven and brush the squash slices with melted butter.
- Bake for an additional 5 minutes or until slices are browned on the bottom and tender when pierced with the tip of a paring knife.
- Serve alone as a beautiful, simple side or mix with other winter stars like kale, cooked quinoa or rice, roasted Brussel sprouts, pecans, or cranberries.