Super-delicious Roasted Butternut Squash that is infused with honey and seasoned with smoked paprika. Cooked until the edges are sweetly caramelised, these cubes of deliciousness are soft, sticky and wonderfully healthy.
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Roasted Butternut Squash – easy to grow, easy to roast & super-delicious
Roasted butternut squash is one of my favourite vegetables. Except it’s not. Butternut squash is apparently a fruit… technically! It is however, most commonly enjoyed as a veggie side dish and (in my humble opinion) when served this way, should always be roasted. Why? Because roasting is the best and most straightforward way to intensify its natural sweetness and super-deliciousness.
Butternut squash is seasonally an Autumn crop and is actually pretty easy(ish) to grow. I don’t count myself as much of a farmer, but have successfully grown butternut squash a number of times. It’s a perfect store veggie too. Once harvested, it will stay fresh in a coolish larder for months… Which means that although it likes plenty of space to grow, it rewards with tastiness all winter.
Is Roasted Butternut Squash good for you?
You bet it is! Roasted Butternut squash is packed full of nutrients and fibre. It is a fantastic source of vitamins (particularly vitamins A, C, E and B) and minerals (manganese, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc). And just 3 tasty tablespoons counts as one of your ‘5 a day’. Even better… its high anti-oxidant levels support your health, with some claims that its particular nutritional profile may help to decrease heart disease and cancer risk in an appropriate overall diet.
This roasted butternut squash recipe uses just a little coating of healthier olive oil to encourage a great roasting process and a hint of unrefined honey to enhance the natural sweetness of the squash.
Do I have to peel & cube butternut squash before roasting?
Although you can roast butternut squash with the skin on (and indeed some say it’s easier to roast that way), I usually roast with the skin peeled. The only exception that I personally make to this rule is when I am using the squash for a roasted puree.
Why? Because peeling and cubing when the squash is raw and firm is WAY easier… The roasted butternut squash pieces keep their shape. And they are more evenly-cooked. Plus.. they have extra sweet, sticky, caramelised surface to enjoy.
Of course, if you don’t want cubes of roasted butternut squash, then simply slice, dice or cut into whatever shape floats your boat. And if you are happy just scooping softer mushy spoonfuls from the skin, then don’t peel at all.
What do I eat roasted butternut squash with?
Butternut is the perfect side to accompany roast dinner. It pairs particularly well with chicken, pork and beef and is divine when served with Christmas dinner. But it also makes an amazing addition to a healthy Buddha Bowl and to salads as well. Why not try shaving it with a potato peeler, before roasting for a different texture and experience.
Roasted butternut squash also tastes amazing nestled into pastry fillings. It makes a great alternative topping for Pastry Pizza. But we also have a recipe for Butternut Squash, Pine Nut & Stilton picnic pies which is full of tasty surprises.
Or why not try using it in soup? If you can’t get hold of pumpkin for Pumpkin Soup (my recipe uses chunks of roasted pumpkin) or my Roasted Pumpkin, Ramiro Pepper & Leek Soup, then simply sub with roasted butternut squash! It’s also perfect in Red Lentil Dahl.
But you know what? I love honey roasted butternut so much, I have been known to simply grab a bowl, pile it high, melt some cheese over the top and eat with a spoon.
Can I use this recipe for roasting other squash?
Absolutely. This recipe will work well for pretty much any other FIRM squash as it will for butternut. Courgettes (zucchini) are probably too wet, but patty pans, the winter squashes, kabochas, etc should all be good. If the texture is similar to butternut, then give it a go.
Is this recipe free-from and Vegan?
Yes… This recipe is ‘free from’ gluten, dairy, eggs and other key allergens. Although it uses honey which is unsuitable for Vegans, this can easily be swapped for maple syrup, which also tastes gorgeous.
If there is anything you don’t want to add, then simply leave it out. At its base, roasted butternut squash just needs heat and a little oil.
Equally, if you want to add herbs, or other spices (cumin, turmeric or coriander are particularly good) instead of paprika, then go ahead. Butternut roasting is as versatile as it is simple.
Made Roasted Butternut Squash?
If you make my roasted butternut squash recipe, I’d love to know. Did you add anything different? Play with the shape? Leave a comment below and tell me! Or tag me on social media (my links are at the top right of the page).
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Honey Roasted Butternut Squash
- potato peeler
- chopping board
- sharp-edged spoon or fork
- sharp vegetable knife
- medium to large roasting tin
- 1 large butternut squash peeled, deseeded and cut into medium-size cubes
- 1½ tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1½ tbsp runny honey or maple syrup if Vegan
Pre-Prepare the Squash
- Peel the butternut squash outer skin using a potato peeler.
- Cut the squash in half lengthways and scrape out the seeds and fibrous core using the sharp edge of a spoon or a fork.
- Cut the squash into medium sized cubes.
Season and Roast the Squash
- Pre-heat the oven to 200 C/400 F/Gas 6.
- Transfer the squash cubes to a medium to large roasting tin and add the oil to the pan.
- Using your hands, coat the squash with the oil thoroughly.
- Sprinkle the squash with the paprika and salt and pepper (to taste) and toss the cubes to mix in the seasoning.
- Drizzle the honey (or Maple syrup) over and place in the oven.
- Roast for 45 minutes to an hour, turning the cubes intermittently, until soft, sticky and just starting to caramelise at the edges.
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