Thanksgiving Worthy Squash

November 18, 2009


Have you heard?  Thanksgiving is right around the corner.  I don’t know about you but I am totally freaking out.  Last year at this time, I had three clients who I was cooking dinner for twice a week.  One of them also asked me to help with all of the side dishes for their Thanksgiving feast plus we hosted a dinner at our house for 19 adults and 10 children and I felt more relaxed last year than this year.

I subscribe to the theory of inertia.  When I am busy, I just stay busy.  It seems the more cooking I do, the more I can do.  Planning my clients’ dinners just made me better about planning my own.  I was more present and prepared than I am this year.  I am no longer cooking for my clients but it’s not as though I’m not cooking (I am doing plenty of that).  I’m just not in the zone like I was last year.

I have a hunch that people might visit this site looking for vegetarian Thanksgiving options.  I am sorry to tell you that this year, as well as last year and all the years ahead into the forseeable future, a turkey will be on our table.  We have turkey lovers among our family members and loved ones.  I cannot deny them.  Thanksgiving will just have to be as it has always been for me – lots of delicious side dishes plus a big saucepan of vegetarian gravy and a big bird for the carnivores.

I’m still in the menu planning stages (yes, I know there are only 8 days until the big day) but I’m thinking this might be one our sides.  I have been making this squash dish for years.  It is about the simplest thing around but holy moly is it good.  I use delicata squash, but you can use any kind where the skin is edible.  I’ve made it using butter, but I have to tell you that olive oil tastes just as good here and I like the idea of offering my vegan readers a tasty dish as well.  Both of my kids are really good eaters but neither of them love vegetables.  I’m here to tell you that they inhaled this squash.


One Year Ago:  Cranberry Walnut Braid (which I make every year for Thanksgiving)

Maple Roasted Delicata Squash
Dana Treat Original
Serves 6-8 as a side dish

1- 3-4lb. delicata squash (or another variety with an edible skin)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp. kosher salt

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Cut the squash in half vertically.  Scrape out all of the seeds.  Cut each half into 3/4-inch thick slices.  Arrange slices on a large baking sheet and toss with olive oil, maple syrup, and salt.  Make sure to toss well so that each slice is coated.

Bake in the oven until tender and starting to brown, about 15-20 minutes.  Allow to cool slightly, then remove from the baking sheet.  Can be served warm or room temperature.


  1. Love those beautiful, caramelized bits. I have never cooked a Thanksgiving dinner. With so much family around, I weasel out of it every year. If my contribution is a side dish, though, this will definitely be in the running.

    Comment by The Leftoverist — November 18, 2009 @ 7:25 am

  2. They look like a plate of ears!
    I love squash in any shape or form, even noses!

    Comment by Stacey Snacks — November 18, 2009 @ 1:35 pm

  3. My mom is cooking this year, so I am not going to be running around crazy like you! I am bringing lots of delicious sides, so this squash looks perfect. That was always my favorite part anyhow. Sides smothered in a mushroom gravy = perfection!

    Comment by fresh365 — November 18, 2009 @ 2:09 pm

  4. What a pretty side dish! Interesting that you, too, subscribe to the ‘lots of tasty side dishes’ theory for vegetarians. I’ve noticed that’s the approach a lot of chefs prefer because the sides should be just as tasty as the bird (usually more so in my opinion). But there are vegetarians who take offence if there’s not some ghastly ‘nut roast’ type thing on the table!

    Comment by Hilary — November 18, 2009 @ 2:39 pm

  5. yum! I love squash pretty much all ways, but this sounds delicious and easy! good luck with the planning!

    Comment by Emily Rose — November 18, 2009 @ 3:24 pm

  6. Looks delicious and so simple to make , is acorn squash in the same catergory of edible skin ? Happy Thanksgiving !!

    Comment by Dimitra Alexakos — November 18, 2009 @ 3:46 pm

  7. Too funny, I feel the same way in regards to busyness. I’ve got some much strange varieties of squash this year from our csa that I’m always looking for new ways to cook it all up. Looks good.

    Comment by kickpleat — November 18, 2009 @ 6:40 pm

  8. i completely subscribe to the theory of inertia as well. though it works against you when the motivation is low (a body at rest stays at rest)! i roasted sweet potatoes in the same manner last year for thanksgiving and it went fast.

    Comment by {kiss my spatula} — November 18, 2009 @ 7:45 pm

  9. This is a very timely post, as I just made these last night! You shared the recipe with us maybe 2 years ago? Anyway, I had to stop Nikhil from eating the whole plate last night. This is absolutely the easiest and most delicious squash recipe ever. I was going to do this as a side for a Christmas meal I am planning. Sure it will be a big hit with all. Thanks again!

    Comment by Mara — November 18, 2009 @ 8:12 pm

  10. We always have turkey for thanksgiving too. Whether its at our place, our my in laws place, there is always turkey involved. But I make almost everything else vegetarian.

    Comment by Veggie Belly — November 18, 2009 @ 8:54 pm

  11. For several years in a row, I planned a Thanksgiving feast. But, for the last four years (including this year) I’ve traveled for the holiday. I miss planning for the big day. And, your squash looks delicious. I may have to put together a mini-feast when I get back home!

    Comment by lisaiscooking — November 19, 2009 @ 2:01 am

  12. Looks delicious and so simple to make , is acorn squash in the same catergory of edible skin ? Happy Thanksgiving !!

    Comment by CD — November 29, 2009 @ 6:45 am

  13. This sounds awesome! Maple syrup is one of my favourite things to cook and bake with.

    Comment by Ashley — November 29, 2009 @ 7:12 pm

  14. I made this as soon as you posted it, and have made it many occasions since. Back before I read this post I didn’t know there was a squash you didn’t have to peel. It’s lovely! I will continue to enjoy this recipe for autumns to come, so I just wanted to say thanks for sharing this delicious and simple recipe!

    Comment by Louise — November 13, 2011 @ 8:57 pm

  15. […] love. this maple delicata squash is […]

    Pingback by love, in this moment. | Floptimism — December 13, 2014 @ 2:38 pm

Leave a comment