Five spice roasted acorn squash is the perfect side dish, kissed with fall and the smallest hint of spice, and then tossed with nutty toasted sesame seeds. Perfect with a roast chicken or as a healthy and quick Thanksgiving side dish!
Acorn squash isn't good until the first frost, or at least that's what my mom says and she is usually right. Sometimes, I don't want to wait until the first frost to have one of my all time favorite fall foods. Growing up acorn squash was a staple, typically served as a side dish to a Sunday roast. My mom would simply cut the acorn squash in half, scoop out the seeds, and fill it with brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter. Then roast in the oven and allow the buttery goodness to bubble away in the center. I loved getting my own squash half (with 3 other siblings having anything that felt like just mine was a miracle) and mashing the sugar butter mixture into the sweet orange flesh. Yum!
What I've realized is that early acorn squash, before the first frost does need a little bit more love. It isn't as flavorful or sweet, mom is right. I've found that if I slice the acorn squash into pretty half moons and coat the slices in coconut oil and a generous amount of spice I can happily enjoy a pre-frost squash. No problem.
My favorite spice blend for winter squash these days is Chinese Five Spice Powder, which is basically a fragrant blend of all things fall plus ground Szechuan peppercorns for a little heat. If you don't have Chinese five spice powder you can make your own version with this recipe or use a pinch of cinnamon, clove, and cayenne.
Coconut oil, five-spice powder, and a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds with buttery soft and luscious acorn squash, well I mean…excuse me for a minute while I devour this recipe!
Five spice roasted acorn squash would make a fantastic Thanksgiving side dish. A little tip, the skin of acorn squash is totally edible. I never ate it growing up but nowadays love to devour the entire squash, skin and all! There is an immense amount of fiber in the skin (which helps you feel full pretty quickly), but also can cause digestive upset if you eat too much. I can tell you that from experience 😉
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Five Spice Roasted Acorn Squash
- Preheat oven to 375°
- Cut squash in half, and scoop out seeds, slice squash in half moon slices about 3/4" thick.
- Toss squash halves with melted coconut oil, five spice powder, and salt.
- Roast for 30 minutes or until tender.
- Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.
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