Arugula Pesto-Drizzled Roasted Acorn Squash

A variety of squashes are plentiful in the fall months, and the fruit keeps well through the holidays. Squash offers antioxidants, plenty of fiber and vitamin C, to name a few benefits, and are versatile for side dishes.  

This recipe is an affordable crowd-pleaser using acorn squash and arugula for pesto. Substituting arugula for basil in this pesto recipe, along with using breadcrumbs instead of some or all of the pine nuts, offers unique and delicious flavors while reducing its calorie and fat content.  


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For Arugula Pesto

  • 1½ cups arugula 
  • 1 garlic clove, smashed and minced 
  • 2 Tbsp. pine nuts (or substitute with breadcrumbs) 
  • 2 Tbsp. breadcrumbs  
  • ¼ cup parmesan, grated 
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice 
  • Salt and pepper to taste 
  • ¼ cup olive oil 

For Acorn Squash 

  • 2 acorn squash 
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil 
  • 2 Tbsp. maple syrup 
  • Salt and pepper to taste 
  • 2 Tbsp. parmesan, grated 

Arugula Pesto-Drizzled Roasted Acorn Squash

Arugula Pesto-Drizzled Roasted Acorn Squash — Serves 4    

For Arugula Pesto

1. Add arugula, garlic, pine nuts and/or breadcrumbs, parmesan, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to a food processor or blender.  

2. Slowly add olive oil as you blend. If the pesto is too thick, add 1 tablespoon of water at a time, blending or processing in between to achieve the desired texture. 

For Acorn Squash 

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. 

2. Halve the squashes, then remove seeds and strings. With the squash halves face down, cut into ½-inch slices. Place squash slices onto a lined baking sheet.  

3. Mix olive oil, maple syrup, and salt and pepper in a ramekin. Brush or gently drizzle the mixture onto the squash slices.  

4. Roast for 20 minutes, then turn squash slices and bake for another 10 minutes, or until fork-tender and caramelized. 

5. Transfer squash to a serving dish, then drizzle the arugula pesto over it. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top and serve. Enjoy! 

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