baked acorn squash on plate

Maybe you haven’t spent a lot of time cooking up squash or gourds like pumpkin (unless they’re in the pie form, of course). It’s pretty normal to see the odd-shaped vegetables and feel a little intimidated about how to cook with them — do you eat the skins? What do you do with the seeds? Do you cut them up before cooking them? What do they taste like, and what do you serve them with?

So many questions, but we’re here to assure you that cooking with squash can be as easy as, well, pie. Take, for example, this baked acorn squash recipe, which only requires 30 minutes to make (most of that being baking time), providing you an easy way to test the waters with autumnal squashes. "I like how easy this recipe is, and it’s made with basic spices that most people already have on hand," says Christina Musgrave, the recipe developer responsible for creating this simple (and tasty) dish. She adds that it’s helpful that acorn squash is easy to find and reasonably priced, especially in the fall. And as for the taste? Musgrave assures us it’s mild and appealing for most. "It has a sweet and mild squash flavor, similar to a pumpkin. It also has a delicious skin when crisp," she says. But of course, the only way to know for yourself is to make the recipe!

Gather the ingredients for baked acorn squash

ingredients for baked acorn squash

Aside from the acorn squash itself (of which you’ll need two squashes, sliced into pieces length-wise with the seeds removed), all you need for this simple recipe is a little bit of olive oil and a few common spices. Check your pantry for garlic powder, onion powder, chili powder, and salt and black pepper. If you already have everything on hand, you’re ready to get started!

Preheat the oven and prep your baking sheet

parchment paper on baking pan

First up, you’ll need to preheat your oven to 400 F. Then, line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper to help keep the slices of acorn squash from sticking. This also helps when it comes to clean up — another reason to appreciate this recipe!

Prep and season the acorn squash

seasoned unbaked acorn squash

Place the slices of acorn squash in a large bowl. Drizzle the olive oil on top and toss the squash with your hands to help coat all of the pieces. Then, add all of the spices on top. Toss them a second time to distribute the spices as evenly as possible.

Transfer the seasoned acorn squash pieces onto the prepared baking sheet. Make sure they’re in a single layer, and try to leave some space between each piece.

Bake the acorn squash and serve

baked acorn squash on pan

Pop the baking sheet into the oven and bake for 25 minutes. You may want to flip the pieces after about 15 minutes so each side "sears" against the bottom of the pan. Once the 25 minutes are up, they’re ready to serve! "[These] would be great with roast chicken or fish, or even short ribs," Musgrave says, adding that they would also taste great with a garlic aioli dipping sauce.

  • 2 acorn squashes, sliced lengthwise with seeds removed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  2. Like a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.
  3. Combine the acorn squash slices, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon chili powder, ½ teaspoon of salt, and ½ teaspoon of black pepper in a large bowl. Toss to combine and place on baking tray.
  4. Bake for 25 minutes, flipping the squash pieces halfway through.
  5. Serve the squash immediately.