This savory butternut squash is a simple and delicious side dish. It’s easy to prepare and tastes like a million bucks, thanks to the garlic butter and Parmesan cheese.
I first got hooked on roasting squash when I made my Roasted Chicken and Vegetable Salad. The caramelized edges give the butternut squash a savory-sweet flavor that steaming can’t and makes any meal or dish even better.
How to Peel and Cut a Butternut Squash
There are two utensils you will need to safely and efficiently cut a whole butternut squash: a sharp knife and a heavy cutting board.
Both items ensure your safety and an easier experience. Of course, if you want to save time, you can purchase pre-cut squash cubes from the produce section of your grocery store.
However, a whole butternut squash yields more than a single 16-ounce bag, which means more buttery, savory goodness, so let’s get to it:
- Slice off the ends
Remove about ¼-inch off the base and stem of the squash.
Since butternut squash has a round shape, I’ve also found it helpful to make a small slice on one side, so it lays flat. It’s much easier and safer to cut this way.
Using a vegetable peeler, remove the tough skin from the squash and discard.
Stand the squash upright, making sure it doesn’t wobble on the cutting board. Using the knife, start at the top center and slice straight through to the bottom. Work as slowly as needed. No squash is worth a finger.
The seeds and stringy pulp aren’t appetizing, so scoop them out with a large spoon and discard them.
- More slicing
Lay the cleaned squash halves, cut side down, onto the cutting board, and slice into sections. I like to half them width-wise, which separates the long kneck from the wider bottom.
- Finally! Cubing the butternut squash
Once you have the squash cut into sections, slice each section lengthwise, then slice crosswise to make ½-inch cubes.
Now that all the squash is cubed, you can proceed with the recipe, or if you’re meal prepping this to make later, transfer the squash cubes to an airtight container.
Preparing the Garlic Butter
Roasted butternut squash is delicious all by itself, but we are taking it up a notch by tossing it in homemade garlic butter before baking. It’s easy to make and adds a ton of flavor.
Once you try it with this recipe, you’ll want to use it on any roasted vegetable. Here’s how to make it:
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 tablespoons melted butter
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
Then, you simply add the ingredients to a small bowl and whisk to combine.
How easy is that? Now we are ready to get cooking.
How to Roast Savory Butternut Squash
Making roasted butternut squash is simple. Here’s everything you need to do:
Preheat the oven to 350F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper
Place the cubed butternut squash onto the lined baking sheet and drizzle with the butter garlic mixture. Add the chopped parsley and toss to evenly coat the veggies.
Spread everything in an even layer and roast in the oven for 40 minutes until tender and golden brown.
- Add cheese
Remove the squash from the oven and add the Parmesan cheese. Place the baking sheet back into the oven for another 5 minutes to melt the cheese.
- Dish up
Grab a plate and serve immediately.
I often get asked if you can roast vegetables in a baking dish, and while the answer is yes, but it does affect the vegetable’s texture. A baking dish is smaller than a baking sheet, which places the cut veggies in close proximity to one another. This creates a steaming effect that makes the vegetables a little softer but still flavorful.
If you prefer roasted vegetables with crispy, golden brown edges, use a baking sheet. It gives them enough room to be spaced out, and the excess moisture evaporated by the high temperature.
Finishing Savory Butternut Squash
Butternut squash is done roasting when the center of each piece is fork-tender, and the edges have that bronzed color. Once they’ve reached that point, it’s time to remove them from the oven and add the finishing touches: grated Parmesan cheese.
What to Serve with Savory Butternut Squash
This is the type of side dish you serve with your favorite chicken dinner or a sheet pan meal since you’re already using the oven. I have some family-favorite recipes below that would be a perfect pair with this savory butternut squash:
- Melt in Your Mouth Chicken
- Slow Cooker Cajun Roast
- Honey Chicken Drumsticks
- Dijon Pork Tenderloin
- Over a Winter Greens Salad
Admittedly, chicken is usually the winner when I want to make a simple entreé with a few sides. These are the easiest types of meals easiest to prepare, and I have a ton of delicious chicken recipes in my new eBook Chicken. It’s What’s for Dinner.
Savory Butternut Squash with Garlic & Parmesan
- 1 lb butternut squash, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes
- 3 garlic cloves
- 4 tablespoons butter, melted
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
- ⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, toss the squash cubes with the garlic, melted butter, salt, pepper, and parsley. Transfer to a baking sheet and spread out the cubes in a single even layer.
- Place the baking sheet in the preheated oven and roast for 40 minutes or until the surface becomes light brown and the flesh is tender and soft. Turn off the heat and remove from the oven.
- Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese on top and place the baking sheet of squash back into the oven for 5 minutes or until the cheese melts. Serve immediately.