This Roasted Acorn Squash with brown sugar and butter is a delightful fall treat that everyone will enjoy seeing on the table. And it’s perfect for the holidays.
Table Of Contents
I look forward to fall because of all the different dishes I can make with squash. This Roasted Acorn Squash recipe happens to be one of my very favorites.
- TASTE: This dish is so delicious. The caramelized butter and brown sugar give the acorn squash such an amazing flavor.
- TEXTURE: Buttery and tender, this Roasted Acorn Squash has a beautifully caramelized top layer that’s a delight to bite into.
- TIME: It takes an hour and 15 minutes to make.
- EASE: This recipe is nice and easy. It’s a quick fix for a sweet tooth craving and you only need a few ingredients!
What You’ll Need
- Acorn Squash– When getting your squash, look for one that is heavy for its size, has a dull, smooth skin that’s a mix of green and orange, and has no soft spots.
- Brown Sugar– This ingredient will add rich sweetness. You could use white sugar instead, but the molasses in this one has a deeper flavor that’s perfect for fall.
- Butter– We’ll coat the acorn squash flesh with this to help the salt and sugar stick, but also to add moisture and help caramelize the squash.
- Salt– For added contrast and flavor.
Add-ins and Substitutions
- Substitute oil for butter- If you are avoiding dairy, then you can use olive oil in place of the melted butter here.
- Add seasonings- Try this recipe with black pepper, garlic powder, cinnamon, chili powder, rosemary, sage, or thyme.
- Substitute maple syrup- Rather than brown sugar, try this recipe with maple syrup as the sweetener. It will add even more fall vibes to the table.
- Make it with other gourds- You can use this recipe with other similar gourds, such as butternut squash, kabocha squash, buttercup squash, and pumpkin.
How to Make Roasted Acorn Squash
- Prep the acorn squash. Microwave a whole acorn squash for one minute. Then carefully cut it in half and remove the seeds.
- Cross-hatch the flesh. Place the cut squash onto a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Then make cross-hatch slits about 1/4 inch deep into the flesh.
- Add the rest of the ingredients. Now pour the melted butter into the acorn squash half with the brown sugar and salt, and evenly distribute everything.
Pro Tip: I find that using a pastry brush to evenly distribute the butter, sugar, and salt works best.
- Roast. Preheat the oven to 400°F and bake for about 1 hour, or until fork tender.
- Warm the acorn squash- This step is so helpful. It will soften the squash up, making it easier to cut through.
- Use a spoon to get out the seeds- The easiest and cleanest way to remove the seeds of the squash is by using a large spoon. It will cut away the stringy bits, too, to clean out the center.
- Use a pastry brush- This is another helpful tool. It spreads the butter evenly, allowing the salt and brown sugar to evenly coat the flesh of the Roasted Acorn Squash for the best caramelization.
- Check doneness with a fork- Pierce the squash with a fork to see if it is tender. If so, then you can take it out of the oven. If it’s still a little hard, roast it for another 5-10 minutes before checking again.
Cut the acorn squash in half and then slice off a little on the skin side. This will keep it from rolling when it’s placed in the oven to roast. You can leave it as it once you remove the seeds, or you can cut the flesh in a cross-hatch pattern to allow seasonings to absorb more effectively.
The skin of a Roasted Acorn Squash is tender and delicious. It can be eaten with the flesh or easily peeled away to be eaten separately.
This Roasted Acorn Squash is versatile enough to be served as a side dish or dessert. It’s perfect during the fall and holiday seasons.
- Meats: Serve it as a side dish to this Pork Crown Roast, Juicy Thanksgiving Turkey, Braised Beef Stew Recipe, or Ribeye Steak.
- Potatoes: Pair it with some Scalloped Potatoes, Super Creamy Mashed Potatoes, Parmesan Roasted Potatoes, or Air Fryer Baked Potatoes.
- Vegetables: Enjoy this Roasted Acorn Squash with Air Fryer Brussels Sprouts, Sauteed Garlic Asparagus, Crispy Air Fryer Broccoli, or Bacon Green Bean Salad.
- Desserts: Serve it with some White Chocolate Creme Brulee, Homemade Apple Pie, Pumpkin Cheesecake (VIDEO), or Maple Donut Bars.
Make This Recipe in Advance
Make ahead: You can prep the acorn squash ahead of time and store it in the fridge until you’re ready to season and roast it. Or you can roast it, let it cool, and store it until serving time.
Storing: Store any leftovers of this Roasted Acorn Squash in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. You can reheat it in the microwave or in the oven until warmed through.
Freeze: You can freeze the squash, but only without the skin. Remove the flesh and cut it into cubes. Store it in a freezer-safe container or ziplock bag for up to 3 months.
More Delicious Fall Recipes!
Full Recipe Instructions
Roasted Acorn Squash
- Place a whole acorn squash into the microwave and microwave for one minute. This will soften it up making it easier to cut through. Now carefully cut the acorn squash in half and remove the seeds using a large spoon.
- Place the cut squash onto a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Then make cross-hatch slits (about 1/4 inch deep).
- Preheat your oven to 400°F and bake for about 1 hour or until fork tender.
This recipe was originally posted November 4, 2015, we’ve tweaked it a bit since then.