Have you tried delicata squash yet?

Why we can’t get enough of this in-season vegetable

Sweet and satisfying, nutrient-rich and perfect for roasting, winter squashes—like acorn, butternut, Hubbard, and pumpkin—are irresistible…except for their thick skin. Sometimes, peeling or carving it away is one step too many.

Enter delicata squash, a “winter” squash that starts hitting stores in September. Its thin skin is so, well, delicate, that it will melt in your mouth.

Just cut a delicata in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Then brush with olive oil and place cut side down—or slice into inch-thick half moons and toss with olive oil—and roast in a 450ºF oven until soft, about 30 minutes. Or try the easy recipe below.

Serve as a side, or toss the half moons into your salad. Mmm. It’s a less-sweet-than-butternut crowd pleaser.

Like any winter squash, delicatas are no slouch in the nutrient department. You can count on a good dose of fiber, vitamin A from carotenoids, lutein, potassium, and folate, all for around 80 calories per cup. And delicatas are smaller than some winter squashes, so they’re perfect for a dinner for one or two.

To find a riper (that is, sweeter) delicata, look for orange, not greenish, stripes on the pale yellow skin.


Roasted Delicata

Serves 4.
Time: 35 minutes

2 seeded delicata squash, cut into half moons
1 thinly sliced red onion
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds

1. Preheat the oven to 450ºF. Toss the squash with the red onion and oil.

2. Roast on a rimmed sheet pan for 30 minutes.

3. Top with the pumpkin seeds.

Recipe developed by Kate Sherwood, The Healthy Cook.

Photos: smashingoats/stock.adobe.com (top), Kate Sherwood & Jennifer Urban/CSPI (bottom).

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