Food is such a seasonal thing, and even though squash is available in every season, it still reminds me of fall. This recipe for Maple-Roasted Acorn Squash Rings makes an elegant and healthy fall side dish.
Acorn squash is easy to recognize; it looks like a giant acorn. It’s one of the most popular winter squashes because of its versatility. Acorn squash comes in three colors: green, orange, and a new white variety. I always choose the green acorn squash because it’s available year round at my grocery store. An average acorn squash weighs about 1 pound.
When you roast this squash in the oven with maple syrup, it is soooo good. Because of the delicious sweetness, these acorn squash rings are especially good to try with children.
Tip: if you struggle with slicing the unpeeled acorn squash into rings, poke the squash in a few places with a paring knife and put in the microwave for 10–12 minutes before slicing. The cooking will soften it up and make it more manageable.
- 2 acorn squash (about 3 pounds)
- 2 Tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Cooking spray
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup walnuts, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 375°F.
- Cut ¼ inch from stem end and bottom of each squash and discard. Cut each squash in half crosswise. Discard the seeds and membrane. Cut each squash half crosswise into 2 (1-inch-thick) slices. Combine 2 tablespoons maple syrup, 2 teaspoons olive oil, black pepper, and ¼ teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add squash and toss to coat. Place squash on a jelly-roll pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375° for 30 minutes or until tender.
- Sprinkle dry cranberries and walnuts before serving.