With fall approaching, the colors are changing—the leaves, yes, but also what’s on our plates. Farmers’ markets and the grocers’ produce sections are full of yellows, reds, purples, and oranges. But what do you do with a red cabbage? A spaghetti squash? A celery root?
Eating in the summer is easy. Most greens can be eaten raw. But autumn vegetables take a little more thought. For one thing, many take more time to cook. And most have to be prepped before cooking.
Don’t despair! Roasting is our favorite way to prepare most of these vegetables. Use this handy chart to get started:
|Vegetable||Preparation||Oven temperature||Time (approx.)|
|Acorn squash||Halve and seed, then bake cut-side down on lightly sprayed 9 x 13-inch baking dish until tender.||400℉||35 minutes|
|Apples (not a vegetable per se, but a true treat in the autumn)||Halve, core, and roast cut-side down on a lightly sprayed baking sheet until brown and tender.||375℉||40 minutes|
|Butternut squash||Halve and seed, then set on a lightly sprayed baking sheet cut-side up and bake until browned and tender.||375℉||45 minutes|
|Carrots (in any color, even yellow or purple)||Wash well and leave whole if under 5 inches long. (If washed, there’s no need to peel them for roasting.) Halve larger carrots widthwise. Roast in a single layer on a lightly sprayed baking sheet, turning once, until browned and tender.||400℉||20 minutes|
|Celery root||Use a paring knife to slice off the outer “skin.” Cube, coat with nonstick spray, and roast in a pan until tender and lightly browned.||375℉||35 minutes|
|Parsnips||Peel, then slice off the thin, pencil-like ends. Cut the fatter ends lengthwise into two or three pieces. Coat with nonstick spray and roast until browned and tender.||375℉||25 minutes|
|Pumpkin||Peel, seed, and cube. Coat with nonstick spray and roast on a rimmed baking sheet until brown and tender.||375℉||45 minutes|
|Red cabbage||Cut into eight wedges (for a medium cabbage) through the core (thereby keeping each piece intact). Lightly coat them with nonstick spray and bake on a lightly coated, rimmed baking sheet until lightly browned and tender with crispy edges.||375℉||20 minutes|
|Spaghetti squash||Halve lengthwise and scrape out the seeds, then bake cut-side down on a well-sprayed, rimmed baking sheet until tender. Scrape the flesh into long threads with two forks.||400℉||30 minutes|
|Sweet potatoes||For 10-ounce sweet potatoes, prick each in a few places with a fork, then place on a rimmed baking sheet and roast until tender.||375℉||50 minutes|
Take your autumn vegetable cooking game to new heights with these recipes: