Roasted butternut squash is a healthy recipe that’s perfect for an easy Thanksgiving side dish.  This savory vegetable is roasted in the oven with butter and seasonings.  Since it’s in season in the fall, learn how to make the best of this tasty squash by cutting it in cubes, slices or halves and roasting it.

Prep Time: 25 minutes
holding a plate of roasted butternut squash
45 Minutes or Less, Veggie Side Dishes

How to Roast Butternut Squash

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Are you wanting to try butternut squash but are a bit hesitant?  Don’t let this popular fall vegetable intimidate you.  Roasted butternut squash is sweet and nutty in flavor, and is surprisingly versatile.  It can be cubed, cut in half, sliced, hasselbacked, and puréed.  Use it as a side dish, in soups, salads, hummus, risotto, or quick breads.  Butternut squash puree is also a great substitute for pumpkin puree!

forkful of roasted butternut squash

What are the benefits of butternut squash?

  • High in potassium, which helps lower blood pressure.
  • High in vitamin A, which helps improve eyesight.
  • High in fiber, which helps maintain your digestive tract.

Is butternut squash a carb?

  • Yes, one cup has 16 g of carbs.
  • It’s similar to other starchy veggies like acorn squash and pumpkin.
  • Compared to sweet potatoes, it’s lower in carbs.

holding a plate of roasted butternut squash

What other ingredients would give me a savory, bold flavor?

  • Citrus Juice or Zest: oranges and lemons
  • Splash of Vinegar: white wine vinegar or balsamic
  • Sharp, Salty Cheeses: Asiago, Parmesan, feta
  • Earthy Fresh Herbs: sage, rosemary, thyme
  • Bold Spices: cumin, coriander, curry

How do you prepare and cook butternut squash?

Start by washing and patting dry the outside of the squash.

two butternut squash

Cut the ends off with a sharp chef’s knife.  If you find this too hard, pierce the squash all over with a knife to let the steam escape, then microwave for 2 to 5 minutes to soften it.  Let it cool.

cutting off the ends of a butternut squash

Slice the squash in half lengthwise, starting at the bottom.

butternut squash cut in half

Use a metal spoon to scope out the seeds and pulp.  Use a grapefruit spoon to scrap out any pulpy strings.

scooping out the seeds from a butternut squash half

Place on a foil lined baking tray, and brush generously with butter.

brushing butter on butternut squash halves

Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and lots of fresh thyme.

sprinkling herbs on a butternut squash half

Roast at 425 F for 1 hour 10 minutes (for a 4-pound squash) or until the flesh and skin are tender when pricked with a fork.  Rotate half way through.

two halves of a roasted butternut squash on a cookie sheet

Let cool slightly, then slice the neck into 14 slices.  Use a mini cookie cutter to cut out acorn shapes.  Arrange on a serving plate, drizzle with melted butter, and sprinkle more salt, pepper, and fresh thyme on top.  Any leftover squash from the neck or bulb can be cubed up to use in a salad.

plate of roasted butternut squash

Serve warm and enjoy this healthy vegetable with your family and friends.

Pro Tips

  • Make the squash easier to cut by piercing it with a knife all over, then microwaving it for 2 to 5 minutes.  Let cool.
  • Peel the squash with a sharp chef’s knife or a Y-shaped vegetable peeler.
  • Butternut squash doesn’t discolor quickly when cut like apples.
  • If you roast it long enough, the peel softens so you can eat it.
  • For a hasselback squash, cook it for 30 minutes.  Let it cool, then cut in the hasselback pattern.  Baste with butter and cook for another 30 minutes.
  • Puree the squash by removing the flesh from skin and pulsing it in a blender with spices and a bit of water or milk.
  • Freeze pureed squash in muffin tins or ice cube trays for one hour, than put in a freezer bag.
  • Want to eat the seeds? Boil 10 minutes in salted water, drain, pat dry, toss with oil and seasonings, and roast on a tray.

What’s stopping you from roasting a butternut squash for dinner tonight?  This squash not only is very healthy, it tastes amazing, and will make your house smell incredible.  Go ahead and try it, you’ll be glad you did.

Surprise your family and friends with the simple deliciousness of these other roasted veggie dishes.

brushing lemon garlic butter on roasted cabbage wedges holding a spoonful of roasted sweet potatoes plate of roasted acorn squash

Did you roast butternut squash with this recipe?  Please leave a recipe rating below to share how you liked it.

holding a plate of roasted butternut squash

How to Roast Butternut Squash

  • Author: Brooke
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x


Roasted butternut squash is a healthy recipe that’s perfect for an easy Thanksgiving side dish.  This savory vegetable is roasted in the oven with butter and seasonings.  Since it’s in season in the fall, learn how to make the best of this tasty squash by cutting it in cubes, slices or halves and roasting it.



  • 1 large butternut squash (about 4 lbs; 1.8 kg)
  • 2 tablespoons butter (28g)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 425 F.
  2. Rinse and pat dry the butternut squash, then cut off its top and bottom.  Cut in half lengthwise with a large sharp knife.
  3. Remove the seeds with a metal spoon, then remove the stringy flesh with a grapefruit spoon.  Set aside the seeds for roasting later.
  4. Place the butternut squash flesh side up on a large, foil-lined cookie sheet.  Brush the flesh with butter, then sprinkle the spices on top.
  5. Roast the butternut squash in the oven for 30 minutes, then rotate the pan and roast for another 30 minutes.  The squash should be fork tender.  If the squash is larger than 4 pounds, it will require more time.
  6. Place the butternut squash on a large cutting board and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  7. Cut the straight neck part off and slice it.  The rounded bulb part can be cubed up.  If you choose, puree or mash the entire squash without the skin.
  8. Arrange the slices of squash on a plate.  Cut out some acorns, leaves, or other fall shapes with small cookie cutters and place them decoratively on the plate.
  9. Drizzle the squash with melted butter and sprinkle with additional fresh thyme, salt, and pepper.  Serve warm.

  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: easy, halves

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2 thoughts on “How to Roast Butternut Squash

  1. Roasted things are always nice to eat in the fall, and this is one of my favorite roasted squashes. The butter and thyme add a nice flavour to the smooth taste of butternut squash.

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