Roasted Vegetables 101

Plus 10 delicious way to use them

Roasting vegetables is one of the easiest cooking techniques. It requires little effort and time, yet delivers richly browned and succulent vegetables with a deep flavor that's hard to match. Below are instructions on how roast vegetables perfectly every time, plus some delicious ways to use them.

  • 01 of 11

    Roasting Vegetables Primer

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    Roasting implies a higher heat than baking. This fast cooking method seals in the vegetables’ juices and caramelizes the sugars on the outside, deepening the flavors. Vitamins and flavors remain in the food instead of leaching out into the cooking liquid, as they do when braised or boiled.

    The Best Way to Roast Vegetables
    Cut vegetables into uniform size. Generally, smaller is better (1/2-inch dice, 1/2-inch-thick slices, or 1/4- by 1-inch-long strips). Put the vegetables into a large bowl and...MORE lightly coat with vegetable oil or melted butter. The fat helps them to form a crisp outer coating and seal in the flavors. Transfer the vegetables to a shallow roasting pan or baking sheet with sides, large enough to hold the vegetables in a single layer.

    Roast the vegetables at 425°F, stirring and turning them with a spatula every 10 minutes or so until they are fork-tender and lightly colored. They should not appear burnt. Season the vegetables with salt and pepper to taste.

    Tips

    • Select the freshest vegetables possible; roasting intensifies their flavor, so they must be good at the outset.

    • Use mushrooms and tomatoes sparingly. The flavor of mushrooms will become overpowering, and tomatoes will give off liquid that could make the other vegetables mushy.

    • Herbs and spices can enhance the flavor of roasted vegetables. Add them when you are coating the vegetables with oil or butter. 

  • 02 of 11
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    This crusty and delicious, oven-roasted potato wedges recipe are easy to make, and are a great alternative to French fries. These potato wedges are also sometimes called steak fries.

  • 03 of 11
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    This roasted cauliflower recipe is a great way to enjoy this very nutritious vegetable. Cauliflower recipes aren't usually the most exciting dishes on the table, but this butter-roasted version is as unusual as it is delicious.

  • 04 of 11
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    Photo (c) John Mitzewich

    Roasting asparagus in a hot oven is an easy, and flavorful way to enjoy these delicious green spears. The flavor is concentrated as the asparagus turns a deep, dark green. A topping of hazelnuts toasted in butter and olive oil finishes this earthy dish.

    Continue to 5 of 11 below.
  • 05 of 11
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    Artichokes are so naturally delicious that it's best not to complicate things when preparing these nutritious thistles. This artichoke recipe uses a very simple roasting technique to concentrate the flavors. The artichokes made using this recipe can be eaten hot, warm, or chilled.

  • 06 of 11
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    Photo (c) John Mitzewich

    This roasted tomato sauce recipe is a great idea when you already have the oven on - while your roast is cooking, you can be making the sauce for your pasta side dish. The roasted tomato sauce will also add moisture and aroma to the oven.

  • 07 of 11

    Roasted vegetables are always a treat, especially when served in an olive pastry tart. The natural sugar in the vegetables caramelizes during roasting and creates an incredible sweet-savory flavor. This is a very adaptable tart, so you can experiment with different vegetables such as eggplant, bell peppers and zucchini, and other cheeses, like shredded Fontina or Jarlsberg.

  • 08 of 11
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    Photo © Flickr user Crystl

    So simple, so healthy, so delicious! This versatile roasted pepper and vegetable recipe makes a great side dish for almost any meal. You can use any number of seasonal vegetables, herbs, and spices. The secret is a nice hot oven which will help caramelize the edges of the peppers, and give the roasted vegetables a deep, rich flavor.

    Continue to 9 of 11 below.
  • 09 of 11
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    Photo (c) John Mitzewich

    This incredibly simple summer side dish features grilled corn covered in a sweet, hot, and very delicious pepper jelly and better glaze.

  • 10 of 11
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    Brown sugar and butter enhances the flavor this fall favorite. It makes a great side with roast pork, turkey or chicken.

  • 11 of 11
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    Photo © John Mitzewich

    This colorful, healthy, and delicious roasted beet and arugula salad is a wonderful combination of tastes and textures. The earthy, sweet beets, the spicy greens, the tangy cheese, and the crunchy pecans all shine in this impressive salad recipe.