If you are anything like us, your favorite part of the Fall and Winter seasons is the food! As soon as Fall arrives you start to see a variety of squashes fill the produce section of your grocery store. With so many to choose from, you literally can have a different squash meal every night of the week. One of our current faves is acorn squash. We love it so much not only because it is delicious and versatile, but more importantly because it is very nutrient dense.
Our favorite health benefits of acorn squash are its ability to protect your skin, boost your immune system, and aid digestion. Acorn squash is found to have significant quantities of Vitamin A and C. The antioxidants that develop from Vitamin A help the skin in numerous ways. It will keep your skin looking young and full of color, help get rid of scars and blemishes, and protects your skin from pathogens and premature aging. We all know how useful Vitamin C is to our immune system. Vitamin C helps the production of white blood cells, which will enhance your body's germ fighting capabilities. Besides having high quantities of vitamins, acorn squash is also filled with fiber. It has about 9 grams of fiber per serving! Lisa Ganjhu, DO explains, "fiber is the fuel the colon cells use to keep them healthy. [It] also helps the digestive tract flowing, by keeping your bowel movements soft and regular".
Our favorite way to eat this yummy squash is to roast it and depending on what you plan on doing with it, there are two main ways roast it. One is just simply cutting it in half and the other is cutting it into slices. We love to use the slices on top of salads or as a side dish since the grooves make a pretty scalloped edge! We use the halved squash as a bowl, which you can eat plain or fill with many yummy ingredients! One thing we learned with acorn squash is that you shouldn't try to cut through the stem. Its practically impossible. And you may end up hurting yourself or your counter top. Cutting around it is the easiest way.
1 medium sized acorn squash (or more!)
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
2. Cut acorn squash. Simply cut it from the stem to the tip. If you want to make it into to slices, cut half inch slices from top to bottom. *Make sure you have a sharp knife and sturdy cutting board
3. Scoop out seeds. For easy removal, take the tip of your knife and run it around the edges. Then use a spoon to take out all seeds and stringy bits.
4. Drizzle with olive oil. Place acorn squash on a baking sheet (cut sides facing up if you're keeping it halved). Drizzle with olive oil and then season with salt and pepper
5. Roast Squash. Roast halved squash until tender, for 35-45 minutes. Roast sliced squash for 20-35 minutes, flipping the slices half way through.