The Best Vegetables to Roast, and How to Cook Them

Roasted veggies are a nutritious addition to any meal.
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Vegetables are truly delicious when roasted. Their flavors are enhanced by the roasting process — even their textures, as they get soft on the inside and a crispy golden brown on the outside.

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Using extra-virgin olive oil will keep the roasted vegetables from discoloring and maintain their lovely taste. And cooking them ahead is a great way to save time and have a side dish ready for the rest of the week.

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Things You'll Need

  • Vegetables

  • Olive oil

  • Knife

  • Oven-safe dish

  • Parchment paper

  • Salt

  • Pepper

  • Favorite seasonings

  • Aluminum foil

Step 1: Choose Your Veggies

The best vegetables to roast include the following:

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  • Eggplant
  • Zucchini
  • Peppers
  • Mushrooms
  • Potatoes
  • Fennel
  • Red onion

Note that eggplant absorbs oil like a sponge. If you've included it in your medley, add a little more olive oil to the vegetables before reheating. You can also add other varieties according to your taste.

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Step 2: Prep the Veggies

Rinse all vegetables under cold running water when preparing vegetables in advance for roasting. Scrub the potatoes and peel the onions.

Cut the cleaned vegetables into 1-inch cubes and spread the pieces in a casserole dish layered with parchment paper.

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Tip

Do not overcrowd the dish — leaving space allows hot air to surround the veggies for even cooking, according to UT Institute of Agriculture. Leave a bit of space between the pieces, and use an additional pan if needed.

Step 3: Preheat the Oven

Heat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Although it takes longer, if you like softer veggies, try roasting them at lower temperatures, such as 350 degrees Fahrenheit, as recommended by the University of California, Berkeley.

Step 4: Add Flavor

Drizzle the vegetables generously with extra-virgin olive oil and season them to taste with salt and pepper. Around 3 tbsp. olive oil should be enough for 4 lbs. of cut vegetables.

If you like a more aromatic flavor, place the cubed vegetables in a bowl and toss them with one or two crushed or finely minced cloves of garlic before placing them on the baking dish.

You can also add the olive oil, salt and pepper at this stage and spread the seasonings on the dish ready to go. For a touch of spiciness, add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper.

Step 5: Roast Them

Place the dish in the oven and bake the vegetables for about 45 minutes or until golden brown. Check on and toss the vegetables every 15 minutes with a spatula.

Note that cooking times will vary according to the vegetable type, so you may need to adjust it.

Step 6: Pack the Veggies

Remove the dish from the oven and allow the vegetables to cool to room temperature. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and refrigerate overnight.

Reheating Roasted Vegetables

Reheat the vegetables at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 to 20 minutes. Consider keeping roasted vegetables warm in a slow cooker until you are ready to serve them. Serve hot or warm.

Microwaving your roasted vegetables is another option if you're short on time — but, this can make them mushy. If you have leftovers, try adding your roasted vegetables to your favorite stock for a hearty soup.

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