Are you familiar with delicata squash? Delicata squash is considered a winter squash along with its cousins, which include butternut squash, spaghetti squash, and acorn squash. Delicata has a thinner skin and a smaller, more oblong shape, so it’s much easier to handle than the others.
I love delicata squash for its cute scalloped edges and hearty texture. It tastes lightly sweet and earthy, like a cross between spaghetti squash and acorn squash. Delicata squash is a great addition to fall salads and whole grain bowls.
Roasting delicata squash is the quickest and easiest way to enjoy this variety. The squash is dense, but turns nice and tender in the oven while the edges caramelize.
The only downside to delicata squash is that it doesn’t store as long as the other winter squash varieties. Now is the time to enjoy delicata squash!
Roasted Delicata Squash Notes & Tips
Delicata squash is easy to prepare.
Compared to its bulkier relatives, like spaghetti squash and pumpkin, delicata is a breeze to slice. Delicata squash is smaller, so you’ll need to use two to three delicatas to replace a larger squash.
Choose between rounds or half-moon shapes.
Either way you slice delicata squash, you end up with very cute shapes with scalloped outer edges. I love rounds because they almost look like flowers. Half-moons are slightly easier to prepare, however. You’ll find instructions for each option included in the recipe below.
You can eat the skin.
The skin on delicata squash is thinner than the other winter squash varieties. Once roasted, it softens and offers a subtle textural difference. The more fiber the better, right? (Contrary to common belief, you can also eat the skin on roasted butternut squash.)
Complimentary Flavors for Delicata Squash
Recipes featuring delicata squash tend to lean one of two ways. First, delicata lends well to classic fall Thanksgiving-style fare. See this Roasted Delicata Squash, Pomegranate and Arugula Salad as a prime example.
Second, delicata squash is also fantastic in Mexican-style meals, offering a sweet and hearty component that balances the spice. See this Chipotle-Glazed Delicata Squash as proof. Squash is, after all, native to North and Central America.
Delicata squash is a versatile ingredient that doesn’t overpower. Here’s a thorough list of complementary ingredients so you can craft your own meal.
- Accents: Bread crumbs, dates, dried cranberries, garlic, lime or orange juice, tahini, cream or yogurt
- Cheese: Feta, goat cheese, mozzarella and Parmesan
- Chili peppers: Chipotle peppers and jalapeños
- Fresh herbs: Cilantro, mint, parsley, sage and thyme
- Nuts: Almonds, pistachios, pecans, walnuts and pine nuts
- Onions: Red, yellow and green
- Produce: Apples, beets, kale, pomegranates and mushrooms
- Spices: Allspice, anise, cayenne, chili powder, cinnamon, cloves, cumin, nutmeg
- Sweeteners: Honey, maple syrup and brown sugar
- Whole grains: Brown rice and quinoa
- Vinegar: Apple cider or balsamic vinegar
More Seasonal Vegetables to Roast
These roasted vegetables are perfect for cozy autumn meals:
- Roasted Acorn Squash
- Roasted Beets
- Roasted Butternut Squash
- Roasted Carrots (Three Ways)
- Roasted Spaghetti Squash
- Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Please let me know how you serve your roasted delicata squash in the comments! I love hearing from you.
Perfect Roasted Delicata Squash
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: Side dish
- Method: Roasted
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Vegan
Follow this simple recipe, and your roasted delicata squash will turn out tender on the inside and caramelized on the outside. Recipe yields 4 servings.
- 2 medium delicata squash (about 2 pounds total)
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon fine salt
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper for easy clean-up.
- To prepare the squash, slice off the stem end and discard. Decide if you want half-moon shapes or rings. For half moons, slice the squash lengthwise down the middle and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Then place the cut sides down and slice across the ridges to make ½″ thick pieces. For rings, slice the squash into ½″ thick rounds and use a spoon to scoop the seeds out of each round.
- Place the sliced delicata squash on your rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle the olive oil and sprinkle the salt on top. Toss until the squash is lightly and evenly coated in oil (add another splash if the squash seems dry), then arrange them in a single layer.
- Bake for about 25 to 35 minutes or until the squash is tender and golden, flipping halfway. Serve as desired.
Note on seeds: You can roast the seeds if you’d like to separate them from the pulp. Refer to my roasted pumpkin seeds recipe for details.
My favorite, can eat every day. Love it with salad and some pistachio feta-I usually use a misto spray olive oil just a bit and some dried thyme and mint for roasting. Wish more places carried them, can be hard to find.
Thanks Frances! I know, I had a hard time finding delicata in general for a couple of years. Fortunately, it seems to be back. Your version sounds awesome.
Kate, I can’t wait to try this Delicata Squash recipe! I’m not much of a cook, but it looks fairly simple and the presentation you show with the pomegranate sprinkled on it is so beautiful…can’t wait! Thanks!
Thanks Connie! You can definitely manage delicata squash—it’s a low effort, high visual appeal situation!
We cut them in half lengthwise scoop out seeds drizzle on olive oil or butter and lay a sprig of rosemary salt and pepper in the cavity. Bake or even microwave. Super easy and really good
Thanks Kathy! Rosemary sounds so nice!
I made roasted delicata squash for dinner with a butter, honey, walnut and cranberry glaze and it was delicious!
Highly recommend this recipe–just follow the instructions, perfecto and what a showpiece! I now know it’s ok to eat the cooked skin–fibre galore :-)
Thank you, Dorene!
I love Delicata squash, too! Always in the squash/pumpkin lineup in our vegetable garden. Often, I just cut the squash in half lengthwise to roast. To serve, all that’s needed is a little butter, salt & pepper, a dusting of chile pepper flakes and a squeeze of fresh lime juice. So good!!
Thanks, Marion! I’ll have to try growing delicata next year. Your serving method sounds fabulous!
I’m not sure this recipe was worth whatever you paid in daycare fees. But hey, welcome back I guess.
Why on earth would you bother to leave a comment unless you’d actually tried the recipe and had actual feedback (aside from basic Karen snippiness). C+K has prioritized her family this year, her choice. If you don’t like it… find another blog.
Thank you, Patricia. Really appreciate your understanding—it’s been a wonderful time with my family, and it feels nice to ease back into work.
Kate, I hope you know that so many of us are thrilled to see you posting again, myself included. Finding balance between your growing family and professional life is certainly worth the childcare arrangements, and I hope this community continues to make this blog work you wish to return to. Thank you for this wonderful and timely recipe for Fall!
Thank you, Rana! We have some part-time help now and I’m trying to strike a delicate balance between family and work. Hoping to publish some more new recipes for you soon. Happy holidays and best wishes!
What a weird and unkind thing to post, Amanda. I am so excited to try this recipe, Kate! Your recipes are the best.
Thank you so much, Britta. I appreciate your kind words! I’m publishing a few recipes that I never got to last year, and have some more new ones in the works! I hope you enjoy the squash.
I made roasted delicata it was delicious!
I can’t believe how simple and delicious this recipe is! It has been our go-to recipe for entertaining this fall! It’s definitely a crowd pleaser!