Delicata Squash Bake with Tahini Sauce

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Baking pan filled with our recipe for Delicata Squash Bake with Hazelnuts, Pomegranates, and Tahini Sauce

It’s officially Thanksgiving week (!!!), and I’ve got one thing on my mind: All the food.

May I offer up the perfect, last-minute side dish for your holiday table?

I present this simple delicata squash bake that’s naturally sweet and bursting with color and flavor.

And because I know you’re busy, this recipe takes just 30 minutes from start to finish. Let’s do this!

Delicata squash for making a delicious vegan Thanksgiving recipe

Funny story: I thought I hated delicata squash (before I ever tried it).

I’d walk through the grocery store, eyeing these mystifying, skinny little devils with confusion and anger. They’d stare me down and taunt, “You don’t know how to cook us. Plus, we don’t even taste good. Stick with butternut, you’ll be better off.”

These are seriously my thoughts.

Baking sheet with freshly roasted Delicata Squash

I didn’t want to like this squash. It honestly seemed too difficult to work with, and not worth the fuss. So you can imagine my anger (and relief) upon trying it for the first time a few weeks ago and totally loving it.

“I wasn’t supposed to like you, but then you had to go and be awesome.”

Isn’t this how all good love stories go?

Pouring tahini sauce over our Delicata Squash Bake recipe

This dish is simple in nature: Baked squash, creamy tahini sauce, pomegranates, hazelnuts, and fresh parsley. It’s a symphony of texture and flavor, and utilizes some of autumn’s best produce. In other words, it’s oh-so worthy of gracing your dinner table.

Plus, it requires just 9 basic ingredients and 30 minutes to prepare. (Double bonus.)

Baking pan filled with our gluten-free Delicata Squash Bake with Hazelnuts, Pomegranates, and Tahini Sauce

I hope you love this dish! It’s:

Tender
Sweet
Crunchy
Fruity
Citrusy
Satisfying
Autumnal
& Simply delicious

This would make the perfect side dish for Thanksgiving, and in reality, for as long as squash and pomegranates are in season. I could even see this being a single lady dinner when John’s away (he’s not much of a sweet squash guy, which totally works out in my favor).

If you give this recipe a try, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it (once you’ve tried it), and take a picture and tag it #minimalistbaker on Instagram! We’d love to see what you come up with. Cheers, friends!

Close up shot of our beautiful and delicious gluten-free vegan Delicata Squash Bake

Delicata Squash Bake with Tahini Sauce

Simple, 30-minute delicata squash bake with toasted hazelnuts, pomegranates, and a maple-tahini sauce! The perfect plant-based Thanksgiving side dish.
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Baking pan filled with our recipe for Delicata Squash Bake with Tahini Sauce
4.65 from 14 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? Best when fresh

Ingredients

SQUASH

  • 2 delicata squash (halved lengthwise, seeds removed, cut into 1/2-inch slices)
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil (melted)
  • 1 pinch sea salt

DRESSING

  • 3 Tbsp tahini
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced (1/2 lemon yields ~1 Tbsp or 15 ml)
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup

TOPPINGS

  • 1/4 cup pomegranate arils
  • 1/4 cup dry roasted hazelnuts (loosely chopped)
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley (chopped)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (204 degrees C).
  • Add sliced squash to a bare baking sheet (1 large or 2 small, depending on size of squash // as original recipe is written // use fewer or more baking sheets, as needed, if altering batch size) and toss with oil and sea salt. Then arrange in a single layer.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes, flipping once at the halfway point to ensure even baking. You’ll know it's done when fork tender, golden brown, and slightly caramelized (see photo).
  • While squash is baking, prepare dressing by adding tahini, lemon juice, and maple syrup to a small mixing bowl. Whisk to combine, then add hot water 1 Tbsp at a time and whisk until pourable. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
  • To serve, arrange baked squash on a serving dish and top with dressing, pomegranates, hazelnuts, and parsley. Best when enjoyed immediately.

Notes

*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with tahini sauce.

Nutrition (1 of 6 servings)

Serving: 1 serving Calories: 165 Carbohydrates: 11.3 g Protein: 2.7 g Fat: 9.5 g Saturated Fat: 5.3 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 62 mg Fiber: 2.1 g Sugar: 11 g

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  1. ImprovDiva3 says

    I took this to a vegan Thanksgiving and family gathering. I received rave reviews on taste and beauty at both. I followed the recipe as instructed. However, I like idea suggested in the comments to add garlic and pepper before roasting for zing. I will be trying this for the holidays again.

  2. Marie says

    Made this for today’s Thanksgiving feast, the family loved it and it looked so pretty. I couldn’t get delicata squash so subbed acorn squash. A little more difficult to prep but it came out great. I’ll definitely make it again.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Wonderful! Thanks for sharing, Marie! Next time would you mind adding a rating to your review? It’s super helpful to us and other readers! xo

  3. Mardy says

    I plan to make this for a holiday get-together and most don’t care for either hummus or tahini. Family… you can’t pick ‘em, but I still love ‘em. Can you suggest a different ingredient?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hmm you could try using a cashew butter, perhaps? It would change the flavor but should work. Let us know if you experiment with it!

  4. Jean Myers says

    Excellent recipe! I found that tossing the squash with 1/2 tsp. turmeric, 1/2 tsp. garlic powder, and a little crushed black pepper before baking gave it a little more zing. I really like the tahini sauce with the maple syrup instead of tamari – thanks so much! I am taking this to a Thanksgiving gathering this week.

  5. A says

    I discovered your blog googling around for a side dish to bring to family Thanksgiving, and I’m so happy I found it! This was really yummy and filling and easy, and I got a million compliments on how pretty it was. At first I was thinking of making some kind of stuffed squash halves, but I’m glad I went with this instead because it was so shareable, everybody ended up taking a scoop (omnivores and veg*s alike).

    To top off the long TG weekend I ended up making your blueberry breakfast cookies and sweet potato / lentil / balsamic mushroom shepherd’s pie too, and everything was great. Beautiful recipes too! Thank you!

  6. Dina Marie Anthony says

    Hi, thank you for this gorgeous recipe. I decided to make delicate squash because it’s so much easier without having to peel it. I found your recipe and I am in the process of making it now. Thank you! ?

  7. Sandra Lucas says

    Delicious and will he on our thanksgiving table. We both loved this combination. Just far more delicious than it seems for the amount of time to make. I think you hit the jackpot!

  8. Carol Dailey says

    Thank you for the great delicata squash recipe. I added in some slim cut carrot pieces and roasted them with the squash. Didn’t have hazelnuts, so I used toasted pumpkin seeds. Nixed the pomegranate seeds and kept the delightful tahini sauce, not too diluted. Wow! It was so delicious! I do love this variety of squash, and this recipe really enhanced its delightfulness. I’ll be checking out your site again. ;=}

  9. Dolores says

    My family & I love this dish. So wonderful to have a squash (delicata) that does not have to be peeled. We love the flavor of all the ingredients especially the tahini, pomegranate with the squash. My DIL asked to have it for Thanksgiving. Your recommendation is spot on.

  10. Julie zemel says

    FReakin’ delish! Healthy simple and wonderful. I’ve made this twice and will definetly make it a thanksgiving side dish as well.

  11. Janis De Lay says

    Just found & tried this recipe. 400 degrees for coconut oil seemed wrong as coconut oil smokes at fairly low temp but I trusted the directions. My house was filled with smoke, had to open all the doors & windows despite my great fan. Did you use a different kind of oil or a different temperature?

  12. holly j says

    This was the first time I’ve used Delicata squash and a first for using Tahini this way as well. Was pleasantly surprised how easy the Delicata is to use and how mellow it tasted. Didn’t have hazelnuts or pomegranate so used chopped pecans and chopped dried cranberries. Really interesting and different flavors for me and hub…we liked it and will definitely make it again!

  13. Jen says

    I made this as a Thanksgiving side last year. It looked really impressive and pretty, but the results were mixed. Some found the combination of tahini, squash and pomegranate seeds off-putting.

  14. Susan Hice says

    This recipe is just delicious and it looks so beautiful. It actually looks like Christmas, or some great celebration meal and it is easy. I substituted pecans for hazelnuts.

  15. Caren says

    I didn’t fancy the dish much. the delicate flavor of the squash was overpowered by the tahini and the flavors just didn’t meld well .

  16. Nichole says

    Thanks for the great recipe! Do you think dried currants used in place of the pomegranate would work? I’m thinking the acidity of both might be similar but you know the recipe best!

  17. Leslie says

    Made this recently, and so very impressed. Even more simple to make than expected: basically roasted squash with simple ingredients on top. The pomegranite seeds really pull the dish together – and googling an easy way to get the seeds out was life changing. I used olive oil in place coconut oil.

    I paired the squash with simple quinoa (w olive oil and salt) and a simple dry grown tomato salad with dijon vinegarette and mushrooms. The combo was light and tasty, but needed a main to ground it.

    What is your favorite main to pair the squash with?

  18. Marcia says

    This may sound unusual, but I made this and used it for pizza topping! It was absolutely delicious! I’ve always enjoyed delicata squash, but my husband isn’t a real fan. While I was making it, I took little nibbles in for him to try and each one got a smile and tastes great! When I put it all together, he was intrigued and even ate a slice! I got the “I’d have that again” line and when I told him it was actually supposed to be a Thanksgiving dinner dish, he just smiled and shook his head saying, “naturally!” I can hardly wait to make it again! Thanks so much Dana, yet another winner!

  19. Rita Lemos says

    Hi Dana!
    Is it possible to do this recipe with another type of squash, since Delicata squash is really hard to find in my country?
    Love your blog :)

  20. CA says

    You’re my absolute favorite blog- this is probably the 7th thing I’ve made of yours and it was delicious as everything else has been. I live in Portland too- do you do workshops or anything?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks for the kind words! Glad you’re enjoying the recipes. I don’t have any workshops at the moment, but subscribe to our email list or follow us on social media for any future announcements!

  21. Sio says

    yay! just in time, too! I just brought some home. I’ve been NUTS about kabocha squash. Because of your informative recipe, I now know that the skin of the kabocha, like the delicata is edible. Do you know if the skin on the Blue Ballet and Black Futsu are also edible?

  22. Elizabeth says

    I made this instead of a sweet potato casserole for Thanksgiving and it was perfect!! It’s so easy to whip up and yet it’s amazingly elegant looking and ridiculously delicious. I never would have even thought to try this squash if it hadn’t been for your post.

    Thanks for all the amazing recipes – I haven’t made even one of yours that hasn’t impressed the masses.

  23. Julie says

    Amazing!!

    I made this last night and it was a huge hit!!

    I had delicata squash to work with and I used nature’s hollow maple which is a xylitol imitation maple syrup.

    Keep up the good work !!

  24. Liv Faye says

    How are your pictures always so flawless?? You’re a great food stylist, all your dishes look STUNNING!
    I’m glad I found this recipe just in time, I have a squash sitting in my counter and wasn’t sure what to do with it! I’ll post the picture soon :) Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  25. Shannon says

    Hi Dana-
    This dish looks amazing! I am having trouble locating this type of squash. Can you sub butternut or acorn?

  26. Erin says

    Hi Dana, what a beautiful recipe! Quick question: tahini isn’t an easy find where I live in France– what would you suggest as an alternative if I’m not able to come up with it? A raspberry vinaigrette as mentioned above?

  27. Kathleen Henry @ Produce On Parade says

    Delicata squash is my favorite squash. It has so many great uses too! I really love it in salads but especially in soups. This is such a great way to really showcase it and so seasonally appropriate with the pomegranate! Thanks for sharing, Dana!

  28. Katie says

    Absolutely adore your pictures :) love the pink background – it looks so good with the orange from the squash :) Very interesting flavor combination … will have to try it! xoxo Katie

  29. deb says

    This looks amazing. I recently made my own tahini using black sesame seeds. It tastes like regular tahini, but looks beautifuly and dramatic. I bet it would be great in this!

  30. Megin says

    Stunning! I swoon! I’m definitely making this gorgeous creation to take to December holiday parties! My family insists on Chipotle sweet potatoes for Thanks-Living but this recipe would be delightful as well. Thank you again, Dana for your inventive and yummy recipes! Have a wonderful week of cooking!

  31. Sonia | TheBrightBird says

    Dana this doesn´t only look beautiful it does look amazingly tasty! I´m gonna find delicata squash and I´m making this on the weekend! :) Thank you thank you!

  32. Alida says

    Fantastic recipe! Love the way you have cut the squash and the sauce is so perfect with it. A very colourful delicious dish.

  33. Steve Heikkila says

    Totally making this for my own Friendsgiving Dana. I think it’s a great and seasonally appropriate autumn harvest celebration dish that’s a welcomed departure from the mushy starch bombs typical of the Thanksgiving table. Really nice, bright, and beautiful.

  34. Emily @ RobustRecipes says

    Looks wonderful! I love delicata squash, but have a hard time finding it at my grocery store. Next time I do come across some I am totally making this dish!

  35. Nancy says

    Hey I love every single one of your recipes!Question, I really dislike Tahini, I have a honey mustard dressing I made, do you think that would taste good or maybe an alternative dressing? Thanks! -Nancy

  36. Samantha says

    This looks too beautiful to eat but who am I kidding…?! I’ll definitely be making this and devouring every last bite! Woo hoo!

    • Laura ~ Raise Your Garden says

      Too beautiful to eat is right….such stunning visual appeal bursting with eye popping color. Lovely! Delicata is a super yummy squash. Squash is so tasty, I can’t believe I went most of my life not eating it. Duh Laura. That’s when I thought Twinkies were “food”

  37. Leah @ Grain Changer says

    This does look like the perfect single lady dinner (my husband isn’t the biggest squash-for-dinner fan either). Is it bad that I am now looking forward to a night when he gets stuck late at the office?? ;)