Roasted Delicata Squash with Maple Syrup and Thyme

Halved Roasted Delicata Squash on a sheet pan with thyme, maple syrup, and butter

Hard winter squash, from pumpkin to butternut, is enormously nourishing, not to mention tasty to eat. It’s an excellent source of vitamins A and C, and delivers a meaningful dose of fiber, too. But it’s not the easiest vegetable to work with. Indeed, sometimes when I spy these bright winter beauties at the market and imagine myself back in my kitchen trying to wrestle the hard flesh into a cooked dish, I walk on by. That said, this Roasted Delicata Squash with Maple Syrup is a bit of an exception.

Roasted Delicata Squash

What is Delicata Squash?

Delicata is one squash variety that’s a little easier on the cook. It’s become a fall and winter staple in our house, and one my kids quite fancy. Smaller than most varieties, delicata is cylindrical in shape, features a creamy color, with green and orange stripes down its length. The flavor is sweet, the texture more tender than mealy, with skin that’s thin enough to eat when cooked.  If you are wondering how to prepare delicata squash, read on.

Delicata Squash on a baking sheet with butter and maple syrup

Easy Roasted Delicata Squash with Maple Syrup

My method for cooking delicata involves nothing more than splitting it down the center, scooping the seeds, dotting the insides with butter and maple syrup, and baking it until tender. It will take you all of five minutes to assemble with no need to fuss with a peeler or strong-arm the flesh into fat cubes. If you want to take it a step further, split delicata makes an excellent vessel for stuffing.

Halved delicata squash on the counter

Can you Eat Delicata Squash Seeds?

As for those seeds, though littler than pumpkin or butternut, they are just as suitable for a snack. Here is how to roast the seeds:

  • Remove the stringy bits
  • Rinse in a colander and shake well
  • Spread out on a parchment-lined baking sheet
  • Toss lightly with olive oil and scatter with salt
  • Roast in 300 degree oven until browned.
Roasted Delicata Squash with maple syrup on a baking sheet

If you like Delicata Squash with Maple Syrup, you might also like:

Delicata Squash Tacos

How to Microwave Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti Squash Lasagna

https://www.momskitchenhandbook.com/uncategorized/arugula-delicata-squash-and-pomegranate-salad/Arugula Salad with Delicata Squash and Pomegranate

Kale Salad with Delicata Squash from Liz’s Healthy Table

Roasted Delicata Squash
4.86 from 28 votes
Print

Roasted Delicata Squash with Maple Syrup and Thyme

The skin of this squash is entirely edible, though you may find it preferable to eat the tender insides. Figure about a half squash per person, although smaller appetites may do with a quarter of a squash.
Course Side Dish, Vegetable Side
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 100 kcal
Author Katie Morford

Ingredients

  • 3 whole delicata squash
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter (or olive oil for a vegan version)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 6 small sprigs fresh thyme or 1/8 teaspooon dried thyme

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Wash the squash. Use a large, sharp knife to slice off the stems. Cut the squash in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and string. Discard. Set the squash cut-side-up on a baking sheet.

  3. Put a dab of butter in the center of each squash. Drizzle the maple syrup into the cavity of each one. Sprinkle salt and freshly ground black pepper over the flesh of the squash. Set a small sprig of thyme or sprinkle the dried thyme in each half.

  4. Bake until the squash is very tender when pierced with the tip of a knife. The time will vary depending on the size of the squash, but will range from 35 to 45 minutes.
  5. Remove from oven and serve.

Comments

01.21.2013 at9:49 AM #

Robin

I like easy. Roasting is pretty easy. Like the simplicity of the ingredients too. I’ve seen some delicata at the market recently. We’ll give it a try.

01.21.2013 at9:49 AM #

Katie Morford

Oh good. Let me know how you like it.

09.15.2016 at6:33 AM #

Julia

Great time for me to stumble across this! Have had 2 of these beauts hanging around my kitchen since the farm share delivery last week with no idea what to do. Can’t wait now, to try your method 🙂 And I’m with you on the hard-to-handle winter squashes. Makes me wish my knives were sharper.

09.15.2016 at6:33 AM #

Katie Morford

This is so simple and really tasty. I also have a delicata squash taco recipe if that is up your alley.

02.02.2017 at10:38 AM #

Jaime

Made this last night. Very easy and delicious. The perfect combination of sweet and savory.

02.02.2017 at10:38 AM #

Katie Morford

Thanks for sharing Jaime. It’s one of our winter staples.

07.06.2017 at5:31 AM #

Curt seyler

Made a bread similar to Zucchini bread with walnuts using delicata squash. Turned out great.

07.06.2017 at5:31 AM #

Katie Morford

That sounds delicious. Summer squash makes great quickbread, so why not winter squash?

09.24.2017 at5:08 PM #

Eugene Cuoco

Just made this recipe tonight. I ate the WHOLE thing. I sauted garlic and jalapeño and fresh spinach and poured that right into the delicata canal. Served with a dollop of sour cream. It was amazing! Salty, heat, creamy, smooth…awesome. Thank you for the recipe!

09.24.2017 at5:08 PM #

Katie Morford

Wowza! I love what you did with this recipe. Thanks for sharing so I can try it that way.

10.26.2017 at1:13 PM #

Andrea

This was easy and excellent! First time I had ever made delicata squash!!

10.26.2017 at1:13 PM #

Katie Morford

Oh good! Thank you for taking the time to comment. Check out the delicata squash tacos on the site. Maybe you’ll like those as well 🙂

11.08.2017 at3:11 PM #

Betsy

Easy peasy, delicious even without the butter,. But I’m writing to say, Don’t throw out the seeds; rinse off the fibrous strings, takes less than a minute, spread on an appropriate size pan, can use parchment, and toast them in the same oven with the squash. Watch carefully not to burn, because of high temperature, check a 8 minutes. they will get golden, and/or you’ll hear a few ‘pops!’, take them out , let them cool and munch away,. pure protein, can eat the shells too!

11.09.2017 at4:50 PM #

Carole M Cole

I don’t know what you’re talking about. I have in my veggie basket on the counter: one delicata, one acorn squash, a butternut and some unidentified squash. I saw this article and thought “great – one I won’t have trouble cutting open”. Went into the kitchen, picked out the Delicata and grabbed my best knife and… just as hard to cut as any other winter squash. I was so looking forward to squash for dinner. I have a shoulder injury so cutting a hard squash is beyond challenging. Maybe I’ll try to cook it whole for a while and then see if it will slice open. I am so disappointed in your misleading article.

11.09.2017 at4:50 PM #

Hubie

Punch some small holes in squash with sharp fork. Place in microwave for about three minutes to soften. Then your knife should cut through with no problem.

11.09.2017 at4:50 PM #

Katie Morford

Hopefully the tip re: the microwave will help. That works for other types of squash as well. You might also want to check out my recipe for Genius Butternut Squash in which you roast the squash whole and then cut it. You’ll find the link for that here: http://www.momskitchenhandbook.com/uncategorized/easy-vegan-butternut-squash-soup/

11.10.2017 at3:43 PM #

Bob

One of my favorite sides at supper time!
Nutty and soft and the epitome of comfort food.

11.10.2017 at3:43 PM #

Katie Morford

Glad you like it. Good-for-you comfort food 🙂

12.17.2017 at11:50 AM #

Leah

I got a delicata squash in my farm share and had no idea what to do with it. Found this recipe and gave it a whirl. It’s DELICIOUS. I didn’t have thyme on hand, so I just did the butter and real maple syrup with salt and pepper. I scraped the goodness out of the skins and served with the sauce drizzled over it. This is definitely a new favorite in our household.

07.14.2018 at12:07 PM #

Dixie Burch

Used molasses, toasted walnuts, some butter, & thin sliced Vidalia onion in filling…..delicious. Could

07.14.2018 at12:07 PM #

Katie Morford

That sounds wonderful!

09.28.2018 at8:55 AM #

Charlotte Riddle

I roast my delicata abd also acorn squash with breakfast sausage stuffs in the middle , and i lso roast the seeds with butter and sweet and salty flavors, it’s a delicious little appetizer to have while you wait for your squash and sausage to cook.

09.28.2018 at8:55 AM #

Katie Morford

Sounds amazing. The smokiness/spiciness of sausage seems a perfect fit for squash. Thanks for sharing.

10.05.2018 at5:37 PM #

Joy Hazucha

Everyone loved it!
Will need to make it again.
And so easy!!

10.05.2018 at5:37 PM #

Katie Morford

Yay! Love hearing that. Thanks for the comment.

10.06.2018 at7:53 AM #

Henrietta

If/when you are unable to cut any squash in half easily, wrap it it foil. Set it in a roasting pan of near size. Pour water in the bottom of the pan to about 2″. Oven roast at 325 – 350 for an hour or hour and a half….until you can feel it softened…using an oven mitt of course. Then bring it out and let it cool for about 20 min. Cut it in half. Proceed with your recipe. Even if it is filling it and roasting it a short time in the oven again. Works perfectly for those of us with arthritis or other issues that prevent us from being able to cut a hard squash in half. Good Luck.

10.06.2018 at7:53 AM #

Katie Morford

I so appreciate this tip! Thanks for sharing.

10.07.2018 at10:44 AM #

Sally Baker

I totally agree with your assessment. The skin is so thin and edible it’s a Plus. I like to roast it as rings for visual interest.

10.07.2018 at10:44 AM #

Katie Morford

Thanks for the comment, Sally. I agree, cut into rings is so pretty. I sometimes toss that into a salad.

11.15.2018 at11:02 PM #

Alana

I do this same recipe with Acorn Squash so I tried it with the delicata and it took way less time in oven because way smaller. That’s ok though. This can also be done with other squash like butternut. It is very good. If you want just sweet, use maple syrup, salt, butter and brown sugar inside and score the squash. The thyme is nice to make it savory also here.

09.16.2019 at10:19 AM #

Frederick Jackson

This has become one of my favorites…not always easy to find..i like this method..give me choice to leave my wife’s plain ..and the skin is yummy as well.

09.28.2019 at9:51 PM #

Gary Sheldon

First season growing delicata in my garden. Honeyboat variety. Got about 20 this season. Wowzer so delicious. We had our farm raised chicken with two types of delicata. One with brown sugar and one with your recipe. Your recipe won the day with me. Thank you so much!! Obtw, we used fresh dried thyme from our herb garden. Yum!

09.28.2019 at9:51 PM #

Katie Morford

Lucky you to have an abundance of my favorite squash. Thanks for sharing!

10.11.2019 at5:46 PM #

Deborah E Boyajian

Wow!!! Thank you for all of these fabulous recipes. I followed the basic recipe to start, and then was intrigued by everyone’s little additions. So I cooked breakfast sausages and then chopped them finely, and then sautéed the sausages with the garlic, thyme, jalapeño peppers, and yellow peppers. After I had already put a small slice of butter in each cavity, sprinkled a little salt and freshly ground pepper, I drizzled 2 halves with jalapeño cinnamon honey, and 2 halves with pure Maine maple syrup.
Oh my god!! Sooooo delicious.
Honestly don’t know which were honey and which were maple.
By the way, your suggestion to poke the squash w/a fork and then microwave, is perfect; the squash were so easy to cut after that.
Thank you
Deborah Boyajian
Portland, Maine

10.11.2019 at5:46 PM #

Katie Morford

I love hearing about your experiments and so glad you like the results. Thanks for sharing your adventures.

10.14.2019 at8:22 PM #

Sherrie Morts

I’ll be sharing this recipe with my mom, we loved it! Prepared the squash exactly as you directed.

10.14.2019 at8:22 PM #

Katie Morford

Wonderful!

10.17.2019 at9:07 PM #

Reg

Delicious delicata! thyme, maple syrup…wonderful. Thank you.

10.17.2019 at9:07 PM #

Katie Morford

Wonderful! Thanks for the comment.

11.04.2019 at3:59 PM #

Becks

This is my new favorite! Pretty much how I roast Acorn Squash but the added thyme is a hit. I love that you can eat the skin, its delish.
BUT
DO NOT DISCARD THE SEEDS!! I have been roasting squash seeds for years. They are full of protein and my kids love them. I have learned to prefer them over pumpkin seeds. (and Delicata is chuck full of seeds)

11.04.2019 at3:59 PM #

Katie Morford

Good tip re: the seeds. I sometimes save them and sometimes don’t depending on how lazy I’m feeling that day 🙂

11.11.2019 at4:12 PM #

vlad

Hi all,
I got some delicata at the market today not knowing what I would do with it…Then I stumbled on this page somehow…what a surprise! I have never felt the need to leave a comment really…until now.
Thank you so much, this was easy, quick and insanely amazing!! Will see if I can make this for guests at my hotel!
Keep on sharing Katie!

11.11.2019 at4:12 PM #

Katie Morford

Wonderful. Thank you for sharing!

01.05.2020 at4:50 PM #

Diane Olshefsky

use a carpenters hand saw…like butter

01.05.2020 at4:50 PM #

Katie Morford

I bet, though I’ve got virtually no experience with a hand saw 🙂

02.28.2020 at2:48 PM #

Tekku Meep

I came across this squash at a grocery store and bought it for looks, even though I didn’t know how it should be cooked. I did use your recipe, substituting dark brown sugar for the maple syrup I didn’t have, and it turned out very good! Now I want to try again, with chopped dates, honey, and chopped walnuts for the filling, and top it off with vanilla yoghurt. I think it will make a nice dessert!

02.28.2020 at2:48 PM #

Katie Morford

I like your idea of adding dates, honey, etc. I think it would be a lovely (not to mention, super healthy) dessert!

09.22.2020 at6:26 PM #

Raine

Delicious! I made it a couple of days ago and it was so good that I made it again tonight.

09.22.2020 at6:26 PM #

Katie Morford

Aw! It’s that tie of year. Glad you liked it.

10.01.2020 at4:34 PM #

Claudia Mendez

This squash was new to me. Now it will always be in my kitchen in the fall. I love the texture, the taste, how easy it is to cook. Love it.

10.29.2020 at8:01 PM #

Jason

That’s amazing information. This really good for our health. Thanks for sharing and love your site

12.02.2020 at1:55 PM #

Gina

I made a lasagna with a delicata that I had roasted along with other veggies. It was amazing! The sweetness of the squash blended with the spicy tomato sauce in a layer between the cheeses and some sauteed broccoli. Sounds strange but one thing about the whole squash family is they all seem to lend themselves to any flavors with which you want them to be combined. What a fun family of vegetables.

12.02.2020 at1:55 PM #

Katie Morford

Sounds delicious to me!

09.29.2021 at8:39 PM #

Liz

For as long as I’ve been roasting various squash, I’ve never thought to add thyme and my goodness, what a game changer. I’m never roasting it any other way! Thank you!!

09.29.2021 at8:39 PM #

Katie Morford

Wonderful!

10.04.2021 at11:40 AM #

Jessica

Simple and delicious! I didnt have thyme (and don’t particularly care for it) so I skipped it and used smoked paprika instead. The skin charred a bit as I over cooked them, but I liked it that way.

11.11.2021 at10:00 AM #

Diane DeSalvo

OMG, this recipe is so good! I love all winter squashes. Delicata is wonderful with maple syrup. I followed the recipe exactly. Had fresh thyme. Will add a pinch of cayenne next time because I’m a New Orleans home cook.

12.11.2021 at4:28 PM #

Barb Connor

I discovered this squash a few months ago. One of our favorites. I have only prepared by slicing the squash in quarter inch rings and roasting. Love them. Will definitely use this recipe tonight!

Post Your Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe Rating