Fall time has become one of my favorite food seasons. You’ve got Smoky Pork Chili, Green Bean Casserole, and then there’s all the squash and pumpkins . Oh, how I love the pumpkins! And there are pears, apples, and pomegranates! Lately I have been obsessed with pears and pomegranates; they have made it into my shopping cart every week. So wonderfully delicious.
One of my favorite fall-time veggies that I absolutely used to hate is Brussels sprouts. First, I shared with you my Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranate, and now I present to you my Roasted Butternut Squash and Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranate.
Can we just talk about the combo of Brussels sprouts and butternut squash for a second? I know it may sound strange, but just trust me; it is an amazing flavor explosion in your mouth. The butternut squash is roasted in a honey-orange glaze that adds just the right amount of extra sweetness to bring out its natural nutty sweet flavor. The Brussels sprouts are roasted to a crispy, chewy perfection with a slight char. Plus, I threw some pomegranate arils on top for an extra crunch and juiciness. Seriously, this dish is aaahhhmazing! The balance of creamy, crunchy, savory, sweet, and tart are….just try it, okay?
Look at those beautiful colors! This right here would make a stunning and tasty addition to your Thanksgiving table, don’t you agree?
If you want to make Roasted Butternut Squash and Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranate as part of your Thanksgiving menu, yet you dread cutting up that big ol’ butternut squash, go ahead, save yourself some time and buy some frozen butternut squash, or fresh-cut butternut squash. I won’t judge, you definitely deserve a shortcut on the Big Turkey Day! Another bonus: if you’ve got an extra-large rimmed baking sheet you can roast both the butternut squash and the Brussels sprouts on the same pan! Yay for less dishes to wash!
BTW this dish is also wonderful served cold. The Brussles sprouts do tend to lose a little of their crispy bite, but no one will care because the flavors are somehow intensified when eaten cold. Therefore, I give you full permission to make this dish a day or two in advance, pop it into the fridge and then pull it out to serve it cold. This also makes it a great dish to bring to your host’s house. Stress free Thanksgiving side dish for the win!
I hope you give this recipe a try. If you do, please don’t forget to leave a comment and rate the recipe. I love hearing your thoughts; it makes my day! Enjoy, my friends.
- 3 cups cubed butternut squash* (you can, use pre pealed and chopped squash that you can sometimes find at your grocery store, which is what I recommend to save yourself time)
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts, stem ends trimmed off, outer leaves removed, and cut in half lengthwise
- 2 tablespoons grape seed oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 2 tablespoons honey (or sub maple syrup for vegans)
- 2 tablespoons fresh squeezed orange juice (about ½ of an orange)
- Pinch of salt
- 1 pomegranate
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees
- If you want to cut the butternut squash yourself see notes below.
- Spread the cubed, defrosted butternut squash and Brussels sprouts evenly onto your large rimmed baking sheet, keeping the Brussels sprouts on one half and the squash on the other half (see picture above). If you don’t have an extra-large rimmed baking sheet for everything to lie flat in an even layer, then use two separate baking sheets. Toss in the grapeseed oil and the salt and pepper, but make sure to keep the squash and sprouts separate. Lay the sprouts cut side down.
- Roast in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and gently toss the squash and stir the sprouts, making sure to keep the sprouts cut side down and everything on their separate sides. Return to the oven for 10 minutes.
- While the Brussels sprouts and squash are roasting, make the orange-honey glaze. Whisk the orange juice, honey, and salt together. Set aside.
- To open a pomegranate grab a large mixing bowl and fill it with cold water. Cut each end off of your pomegranate. You will see sections on the exposed end of the pomegranate. Use your knife to score each section (there are usually 4 to 5 sections). Break open the pomegranate under the water, and use your hands to break up each section of the pomegranate. From there use your fingers to gently remove the arils from the pith (the white part) and the skin. Discard the big pieces of skin. The pith will float to the top and the arils will sink to the bottom of the bowl. Once you have removed all of the arils from the pomegranate use your hand to skim the pith off the surface of the water. Drain the bowl of pomegranate, catching the arils in a strainer. Set the arils aside.
- Returning to the squash and Brussels sprouts, once they have roasted for a total of 25 minutes the sprouts should be tender and charred on the cut end. Remove the Brussels sprouts into a bowl and set aside. Toss the squash with the orange-honey glaze. Return the squash to the oven for another 5 minutes, or until the glaze has reduced and slightly caramelized on the squash.
- Add the Brussels sprouts back to the squash, gently tossing them together. Transfer to a serving platter or bowl. Serve the pomegranate arils on the side with a spoon for guests to top the salad as desired. Serve immediately.
- Reheat leftovers slowly; however they are best when fresh because the Brussels sprouts lose their crispiness. Store the pomegranate arils separately; they can last for several days. This dish is also delicious served cold. The Brussels sprouts do lose their crispy texture but the flavors of the chilled veggies intensifies. Therefore, if you decide to serve this dish cold then you can easily make it a day or two in advance.
To cut and peel a butternut squash follow the directions below.
To cut a butternut squash, it is important to use a sharp, good quality, large chef’s knife. Use the tip of your knife to poke holes all around the squash. Place the squash on a plate in the microwave for 1 ½ to 2 minutes, or until warm to the touch. This helps to soften the squash just slightly.
Carefully cut about ¼ inch off each end of the squash: start by using the tip of your knife and then pressing firmly down on the knife to slowly inch the knife through the squash, while holding the squash with the free hand. Then cut the squash in half, separating the bulbous bottom end from the narrower stem end, right where the bulb ends.
Peel each half of the squash using a good quality vegetable peeler.
Stand each half up on a flat end and carefully cut the squash lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop the seeds and guts out from the bulbous pieces. Discard the seeds or save for another recipe. Cut the squash into 1 inch cubes.
NOTE: you only need ½ squash for this recipe. You can save the remainder for another recipe or freeze it for later. If you chose to cut the squash yourself add 10 minutes onto your prep time.