How to Always Roast Vegetables to Tender Perfection
No matter the veggie or the quantity, roasted vegetables are quick to cook and are quickly devoured by everyone at the table. Plus, this easy, yet impressive cooking method can easily feed a crowd or just a couple. Whether you're completely new to roasting vegetables or just want to branch out from roasted carrots and try some roasted asparagus, we'll teach you how to do it. You don't have to stick to just one, either. You can roast a mix of all your favorite veggies in one go.
Best Vegetables to Roast
When it comes to roasting, not all vegetables are created equal. Before you preheat your oven, make sure you're choosing good veggies to roast for the best and most delicious results. Vegetables such as onions, potatoes, carrots, beets, winter squash, and other hearty root vegetables work well. Tender vegetables, such as asparagus and mushrooms, also transform in the heat of the oven.
Vegetables to Avoid Roasting
Green beans, broccoli, and other green-hue vegetables are not as well-suited for roasting because they tend to turn olive green, and the green beans shrivel before becoming tender.
How to Roast Vegetables in the Oven
Using a high temperature to roast vegetables is key so they caramelize on the outside. For all of our veggies, we keep the oven at 450°F. If the oven temperature is too low, the vegetables will overcook before achieving the desired browning.
A heavy 13x9-inch roasting pan ($37.99, Wayfair) works well for roasting vegetables, but you can also use a large baking pan ($15.99, Bed Bath & Beyond). To keep cleanup to a minimum, line the pan with foil. Place the vegetables that take the longest to cook in the pan. Do not crowd the vegetables or they will steam instead of roast. If you like, add 1 or 2 heads garlic with the tops trimmed off, several sprigs of thyme, and/or snipped fresh rosemary, oregano, or sage.
Seasoning the Vegetables
Toss the vegetables with a seasoned oil mixture (or just oil if you really want the veggie flavors to shine) to keep them from drying out and to flavor the vegetables as they roast. In a small bowl combine olive oil with lemon juice, salt, and ground black pepper. Drizzle the seasoned oil over the vegetables in the pan, tossing lightly to coat all of the vegetables. A basting brush also works to coat the vegetables with the oil.
How Long to Roast the Vegetables
Don't guess how long to roast vegetables in the oven. Use our guide. Roast longer-cooking vegetables, uncovered, about 30 minutes, stirring once. Remove the pan from the oven and add the vegetables with shorter cooking times. Toss to combine, then return to the oven. Continue to cook about 10 to 15 minutes more, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and brown on the edges. The timings here are approximate and will depend on the vegetables you choose.
Vegetable Roasting Times
A real benefit to oven-roasted vegetables is the ability to cook a combination of colorful veggies, resulting in a full-flavor side dish or meatless entrée. Use this as a guide for how to prep and how long to roast different vegetables. Make sure you properly washed your veggies.
Break off woody bases where spears snap easily. Leave spears whole or cut into 1-inch pieces. Roast at 450°F for 10 to 15 minutes.
Trim and halve lengthwise. Rinse well and pat dry with paper towels or clean tea towel. Roast at 450°F for 10 to 15 minutes.
Beets, baby or regular
Scrub and peel beets with a peeler ($7.99, Williams Sonoma). Trim off stem and root ends. If desired, halve or quarter baby beets. Cut regular beets into 1-inch pieces. Roast at 450°F for 30 to 40 minutes (you may want to cover the beets with foil if they start to burn).
Bell peppers, regular or small
For regular-size peppers, wash, seed, and cut into ½-inch-wide strips. For small peppers, if desired, roast whole, then remove stems and seeds. Roast at 450°F for 10 to 15 minutes.
Trim stems and remove any wilted outer leaves; wash. Cut any large sprouts in half lengthwise. Roast at 450°F for 30 to 40 minutes.
Carrots, baby or regular
Trim and peel or scrub baby carrots or regular carrots. Cut regular carrots into bite-size pieces or thin strips. Roast at 450°F for 40 to 45 minutes (thin strips may cook faster).
Wash and remove leaves and woody stem. Break into florets. Roast at 450°F for 10 to 15 minutes.
Trim stalks and cut a thin slice from the bottom of the bulb. Cut the bulb into thin wedges. Roast at 450°F for 30 to 40 minutes.
Remove papery outer layer. Cut into thin wedges. Roast at 450°F for 30 to 45 minutes.
Trim and peel parsnips. Cut into bite-size pieces or thin strips. Roast at 450°F for 40 to 45 minutes (thin strips may cook faster).
Potatoes, new or regular
Whole tiny potatoes, quartered, work especially well for roasting. For larger potatoes, cut them into bite-size pieces. Peeling is not necessary, but scrub well with a vegetable brush this one ($3.99, Bed Bath & Beyond) before using. Roast at 450°F for 40 to 45 minutes.
Wash and halve lengthwise. Roast at 450°F for 20 to 30 minutes.
Peel if desired. Quarter lengthwise and cut into ½-inch-thick slices. Roast at 450°F for 10 to 15 minutes.
Scrub and peel. Cut into bite-size pieces. Roast at 450°F for 40 to 45 minutes.
Zucchini, pattypan, or yellow summer squash
Baby zucchini, pattypan, or summer squash can be roasted whole. For larger squash, cut into bite-size pieces or slices. Roast at 450°F for 10 to 15 minutes.
If you're craving roasted vegetables but don't have a favorite in mind, try a basic roasted veggies recipe. It yields 13 cups of roasted vegetable deliciousness, so you'll have plenty of leftovers for the week! Eating on a Mediterranean diet? Choose from a variety of common Mediterranean vegetables like carrots, eggplant, onions, leeks, peppers, shallots, mushrooms, tomatoes, and zucchini. Or try them out in an Italian roasted chicken and vegetable salad for dinner.