Roasted Winter Vegetable Ideas

Discover secrets to creating delicious oven roasted winter vegetables—along with ideas for incorporating them into mealtimes.

Roasted Root Vegetable Salad

Roasted Root Vegetable Salad

Full of butternut squash, acorn squash, parsnips, turnips and yams, this roasted root vegetable salad is a light and hearty day-after dinner. 

Photo by: Image courtesy of Arlington Club

Image courtesy of Arlington Club

Make slow roasted winter vegetables a staple on your mealtime menus and you’ll be serving delicious food filled with good-for-you nutrition. Roasting is the secret to coaxing rich, intense flavor from veggies. The preparation method contains little fat and requires even less hands-on time. Simply chop, toss with olive oil and seasonings, and place in a warm oven. That’s all it takes to create roasted winter vegetables your family will love.

Winter vegetables include popular veggie favorites, like garlic, potato (white and sweet), onion and carrot, along with some that may appear less frequently on your shopping list, like turnip, rutabaga, parsnip, Brussels sprouts and beets. Master oven roasting, and you’ll expand your menu repertoire. As you understand the flavors these veggies offer, you’ll find ways to incorporate them into favorite dishes—and want to discover new recipes to feature them.

Serve roasted winter vegetables as a side dish to meat or poultry, or add them to winter vegetable stews. Oven roasted winter vegetables make a wonderful accompaniment to salads with spinach, kale, chicory and endive. Or spoon them over brown rice or whole grain pasta for a more filling option. Toss veggies with quinoa for a protein-packed vegetarian meal, or stuff them into a calzone. Oven roasted winter vegetables blend beautifully with eggs to form a main-dish frittata.

When creating a veggie mix, include at least one sweet winter vegetable, like sweet potato, carrot or a sweet winter squash, to balance the more earthy ones (rutabaga, turnip, parsnip or Brussels sprouts). Garlic makes a wonderful addition to any blend, as does tomato (romas work best).

The most basic approach to roasted winter vegetables is chopping, tossing with olive oil and seasoning, arranging on a parchment- or foil-lined pan and placing into the oven. The roasting period coaxes deep flavors and browns edges to a happy crunch. For even cooking, chop vegetables to a similar size, and arrange in a single layer on your pan.

Although the chop-drizzle-bake method works for most winter vegetables, a few veggies yield better results using specific techniques. Beets, for instance, tend to shrivel using traditional roasting methods. Instead, toss washed beets with oil and herbs, then slip into a tightly-sealed foil pouch. Bake at 375º F for roughly 90 minutes. Like all oven roasted winter vegetables, you can test your beets for doneness by slipping a fork or skewer into one (through foil). Tender equals done.

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Oven roasting zaps the sulfurous bite that Brussels sprouts and broccoli can bring to the table. Cut sprouts in half; break broccoli into florets. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper, and place on a foil-lined baking sheet. Roast at 500º F for about 20 minutes. Aim for charred edges, which will accompany a nutty, robust flavor. For outstanding results, preheat your pan with the oven before adding the veggies.

Transform carrots and parsnips into a caramelized, non-shriveled taste treat by parboiling them before roasting. Then toss with oil and spices (try curry or a chili blend) before roasting at 375º F for roughly 40 minutes. For crispy white potatoes, parboil in water with a few tablespoons of vinegar, followed by a rough toss in oil (aim to heavily coat edges and even knock a few off). Roast for 30 to 40 minutes at 500º F, flipping halfway through. 

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