As a foodie blogger, there is one thing I constantly hear from other parents: “Oh boy, you can never come to my house for dinner.” That’s not very helpful here, but the second thing I hear often might be: “How can I get my kids to eat more/some/any vegetables?” My answer is the same every time: Roast them. I do mean the veggies, and here are my favorite ways to do it.
The method (below) is the same — and delicious — every time, but if you want to add another layer of flavor, try them all.
Method: Toss veggies with 3 tablespoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon kosher salt, and place into an oven at 400 degrees F for 20 to 30 minutes depending on the size of the vegetables. Flip once along the way.
Roasted Carrots + Fresh Orange Juice: Slice them, roast them whole or simply dump a bag of baby carrots onto a baking sheet. Then along with the oil and salt, add the juice and zest of one fresh orange, and toss to coat.
Broccoli + Parmesan Cheese: Chop up a head of broccoli (but even frozen florets work) into slices, florets or evenly sized chunks, add oil and salt, and into the oven they go. In the last 3 to 5 minutes of cooking time, once the broccoli edges are starting to brown, add 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese and cook until melted. (Bonus: Ina Garten adds even more delicious flavor in her version here.)
Acorn squash + Maple Syrup: Cut an acorn squash in half, scoop out the insides, then slather the flesh with olive oil and salt. Set cut-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment and bake for about 30 minutes (depending on how big your squash is). When the squash starts to get soft, flip it over and fill each cup with 1 to 2 tablespoons of maple syrup. Cook an additional 5 minutes.
Brussels Sprouts + Balsamic Vinegar: Roast them whole or cut in half. Along with the oil and salt, add 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar and cook for about 20 minutes, shaking the pan once or twice before they’re done.
Cauliflower + Not a Single Extra Thing: Really. Just roast it with oil and salt. They’ll become believers after one bite.
And don’t worry, with four kids under the age of 6, I would never, ever judge anyone else’s family dinner. As a guest I’d just be thrilled someone else was doing the cooking, especially if it was one of these dishes.