This Roasted Acorn Squash is a beautiful and delicious side dish. Sliced acorn squash is oven roasted in a sweet and spicy buttery sauce, then topped with toasted pumpkin seeds, pomegranate arils, and orange zest for a holiday table showstopper!

For more delicious holiday side dish recipes, be sure to check out my Instant Pot Glazed Carrots, Loaded Cheesy Potato Casserole, and Barbecue Green Beans.

roasted acorn squash on a plate

If you’re looking for a truly one of a kind dish to share during the holidays, this roasted acorn squash is just what you need.

What I love about this dish is that while it may seem fancy in appearance, it’s actually made from simple ingredients; most of which you probably already have on hand.

a spoon full of sliced squash with sage

And while the presentation is sure to impress, the sweet and smoky flavors on their own will be enough to wow your guests!

Ingredients for Roasted Acorn Squash

  • Acorn squash
  • Brown sugar 
  • Orange juice 
  • Butter
  • Ground cinnamon 
  • Ground ginger 
  • Smoked paprika
  • Chili powder
  • Arils from 1 pomegranate
  • Pumpkin seeds (or seeds from the squash)
  • Olive oil 
  • Salt + pepper
  • Cayenne pepper, optional
  • Orange zest, optional

ingredients for roasted acorn squash

How to Roast Acorn Squash – Step by Step

Step 1: Slice the squash

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees farenheit. Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Cut the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Cut the squash into half inch slices. (You can save the seeds for toasting; check the notes.) Lay the squash slices on the cookie sheet. 

sliced acorn squash on a cookie sheet

Step 2: Mix the sauce ingredients

Melt the butter in a small bowl. Add 4 Tablespoons brown sugar, the juice from the orange, cinnamon, ground ginger, smoked paprika, and chili powder. Stir to combine and spoon over the squash slices. Sprinkle the remaining 2 Tablespoons of brown sugar over the top.

sliced acorn squash on a cookie sheet

Step 3: Bake

Place the pan in the oven and bake the roasted acorn squash for 12 to 15 minutes, until fork tender. 

sliced acorn squash on a cookie sheet topped with brown sugar

Step 4: Roast the pumpkin seeds

Place the pumpkin seeds in a small bowl and drizzle with the olive oil. Add the salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and the pinch of cayenne (if using) and toss to coat. Spread on a baking pan and bake for 3 to 5 minutes at 400 degrees until just slightly toasted.

pumpkin seeds on a cookie sheet

Step 5: Toast the sage leaves

Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a small skillet over medium high heat. Add the sage leaves and toss, until just slightly toasted. Watch carefully as they can burn quickly.

sage leaves in a pan

Step 6: Serve

Place the roasted acorn squash on a serving plate. Sprinkle with the toasted pumpkin seeds, pomegranate arils, toasted sage leaves, and orange zest.

roasted squash on a sheet pan

Tips and Notes

  • Different Squash Substitutions: this recipe will also work well with kabocha or butternut squash. Feel free to substitute either one.
  • Pumpkin Seed Substitution: if you don’t have pumpkin seeds, you can also roast the seeds that you remove from the squash instead. Simply rinse and dry the seeds, then toast according to the recipe directions.

roasted acorn squash on a plate

  • Pomegranate seeds: Adding pomegranate seeds to this roasted acorn squash recipe makes it extra delicious and adds beautiful presentation. I usually purchase my pomegranate seeds (arils) prepackaged at the grocery store in the produce section. This is a timesaver, but you can always deseed a fresh pomegranate for this as well.

roasted acorn squash with sage and pomegranate seeds

How to Store and Reheat 

Store any leftover roasted acorn squash in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat in the microwave for a minute or two before serving. 

acorn squash slices topped with sage and pomegranate seeds on a plate

More Fall Recipes You Might Enjoy

acorn squash slices topped with sage and pomegranate seeds on a plate with orange slices
5 from 5 ratings

Roasted Acorn Squash

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 35 mins
This Roasted Acorn Squash is a beautiful and delicious side dish. Sliced acorn squash is oven roasted in a sweet and spicy buttery sauce, then topped with toasted pumpkin seeds, pomegranate arils, and orange zest for a holiday table showstopper!

Ingredients

For the Squash

  • 2 acorn squash, cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 6 Tablespoons brown sugar, divided
  • 1 orange, for juice and zest
  • 6 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • arils (seeds) from 1 pomegranate
  • 4-6 sage leaves

For the pumpkin seeds

  • 4 Tablespoons pumpkin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • pinch of cayenne, optional

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees farenheit. Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Cut the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. (You can save the seeds for toasting; check the notes.) Cut the squash into half inch slices. Lay the squash slices on the cookie sheet.
  • Melt the butter in a small bowl, add 4 Tablespoons brown sugar, juice from the orange, cinnamon, ground ginger, smoked paprika, and chili powder. Stir to combine and spoon over the squash slices. Sprinkle the remaining 2 Tablespoons of brown sugar over the top.
  • Place the pan in the oven and bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until fork tender.
  • Place the pumpkin seeds in a small bowl and drizzle with the olive oil. Add the salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and the pinch of cayenne (if using) and toss to coat. Spread on a baking pan and bake for 3 to 5 minutes at 400 degrees until just slightly toasted.
  • Heat a small skillet over medium high heat. Add the sage leaves and toss, until just slightly toasted. Watch carefully as they can burn quickly.
  • Place the squash on a serving plate. Sprinkle with the toasted pumpkin seeds, pomegranate arils, toasted sage leaves, and orange zest.

Notes

  • Different Squash Substitutions: this recipe will also work well with kabocha or butternut squash. Feel free to substitute either one.
  • Pumpkin Seed Substitution: if you don't have pumpkin seeds, you can also roast the seeds that you remove from the squash instead. Simply rinse and dry the seeds, then toast according to the recipe directions.
  • Pomegranate seeds: Adding pomegranate to this recipe makes it extra delicious and adds beautiful presentation. I usually purchase my pomegranate seeds (arils) prepackaged at the grocery store in the produce section. This is a timesaver, but you can always deseed a fresh pomegranate instead.
  • Storing and Reheating: Store any leftover roasted acorn squash in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat in the microwave for a minute or two before serving. 
Cuisine: American
Course: Side Dish
Calories: 300kcal, Carbohydrates: 40g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 16g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 30mg, Sodium: 309mg, Potassium: 746mg, Fiber: 6g, Sugar: 20g, Vitamin A: 1275IU, Vitamin C: 32mg, Calcium: 86mg, Iron: 2mg
Did you make this recipe?Let me know! Mention @TheBelleoftheKitchen on Instagram or tag #BelleoftheKitchen.