The hardest part of this Roasted Butternut Squash and Sweet Potatoes dish is peeling and cutting the squash and sweet potatoes. Other than that, this dish couldn’t be simpler. It’s squash and sweet potatoes roasted to perfection with olive oil, seasonings and a couple of tasty surprises.


Butternut SquashButternut Squash is healthy and delicious!

The pale orange skin and bright orange interior make butternut squash an excellent winter squash. Both the skin and the flesh are hard, firm and shaped almost like a pear.

Butternut squash is a vegetable that belongs to the same family as pumpkins and zucchini. Squash was among the earliest known cultivated plants. It was grown in Mexico and Central America thousands of years ago.

The taste of butternut squash is fairly mild, somewhat sweet, and a little bit nutty. Its flavor may remind you of a cross between a sweet potato and a carrot or turnip.


What Butternut Squash Can Do for You

It’s great for hydration. You can add butternut squash to salads and soups to increase their nutrient content. One serving is about 87 percent water which can help keep you hydrated.

It’s good for your immunity. Like other orange-colored fruits and vegetables, butternut squash is full of beta-carotene and alpha-carotene. Your body converts them to vitamin A, which is important for your immune system.

It’s excellent for your eyes. Butternut squash has lutein and zeaxanthin, often found in yellow fruits and vegetables, and eggs. Along with beta-carotene and vitamin A, they protect your eyes from the damaging effects of ultraviolet (UV) rays.

It’s a good source of fiber. Foods high in dietary fiber can help maintain a healthy weight and lower our risk of cancer. Research shows that butternut squash can help reduce your risk of colorectal cancer, in particular.

It can help your blood pressure. Butternut squash may help your blood pressure by increasing your intake of potassium. This makes it useful as part of a healthy heart diet and reduces your risk for stroke.

Its fiber helps with blood sugar. Butternut squash contains a type of fiber that’s not digestible. If you have diabetes, it can help keep your blood sugar from rising after eating. Butternut squash also has a low glycemic index, and is considered to be an excellent source of carbohydrates for those who want to keep their blood sugar levels steady.


How to Peel Butternut Squash

Butternut squash is known for its thick, tough skin. Peeling it can be quite an arm workout, but there are a few ways to make it easier:

  • Cut a thin slice off the bottom and top so the butternut squash will stand flat on a cutting board. Then use a sturdy knife or peeler to slice the skin off from the top to the bottom. Always cut away from your body.
  • If the skin is too tough to manage, puncture the squash a few times with a fork or knife and microwave it for a minute or two. This will soften the skin and make it easier to peel.
  • Cut it in half and bake the squash with the skin on. It will easily peel away after it’s done cooking.



Sweet Potatoes

Now let’s talk about Sweet Potatoes!

You might not have your next holiday meal to look forward to, but sweet potatoes are packed with vitamins and minerals that make them worth adding to your all year long.

The truth is that these are not potatoes. They’re actually members of the morning glory family and have natural sweetness.


Health Benefits of Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes earned the name “superfood” because of the amount of nutrients they have. Studies show they may help with:

Cancer. Carotenoids in sweet potatoes might lower your risk for cancer. Purple sweet potatoes have another kind of healthful compound called anthocyanin, which may reduce your chances of getting colorectal cancer.

Diabetes. Diabetes is a serious disease that affects people worldwide. The compounds in sweet potatoes might help keep blood sugar levels normal and help reduce the risk of heart disease in people who have diabetes.  When boiled, sweet potatoes are a low GI food, meaning they won’t raise your blood sugar as quickly as high GI foods.

Heart disease. Studies show that sweet potatoes can lower bad cholesterol, which may lower your odds of heart problems.

Macular degeneration. Large amounts of beta-carotene and vitamin A, which are in sweet potatoes, can lower your chances of getting this eye disease, which is the most common cause of vision loss.

Obesity. Purple sweet potatoes may help lower inflammation in your body and keep fat cells from growing, which may help you lose weight.


So, let’s get to the recipe!  And don’t just make this for the holidays!  Enjoy it year-round!

Roasted Butternut Squash

Roasted Butternut Squash & Sweet Potatoes

Reap the health benefits of this delicious anti-inflammatory side dish any time of year! It's great for the holidays too because it's different without being too nontraditional; your guests will love it!
Course Side Dish
Servings 6


  • 1 ½ lbs butternut squash peeled and cut into 1" cubes
  • 2 ½ lbs sweet potatoes peeled and cut into 1" cubes
  • 1 ¼ Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt or to taste
  • ¾ tsp dried thyme or to taste
  • ½ tsp pepper or to taste
  • ½ cup pecans chopped and toasted
  • ½ cup dried cranberries optional
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese optional


  • Preheat oven to 425°F and grease a baking pan.
  • In a large bowl, combine squash, potatoes, olive oil, salt, thyme and pepper; transfer to baking pan.
  • Roast about 40-45 minutes or until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally.
  • To serve, place mixture in a serving dish. Sprinkle with pecans, parsley, cranberries and cheese.


If you just can't resist cinnamon when eating sweet potatoes, add to the bowl with the other seasonings before roasting!
Keyword Anti-Inflammatory, Side Dish, Squash, Sweet Potatoes


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