Are you looking to transform ordinary squash into an extraordinary dish? Look no further! This Air Fryer Acorn Squash recipe takes just four simple ingredients and turns them into something absolutely amazing. It’s the perfect side dish for fall and winter, and the best part is that it’s incredibly easy to make!
Easy Air Fryer Acorn Squash Recipe
You won’t believe how easily this recipe turns a basic acorn squash into a buttery, sweet, and savory delight. All you need are an air fryer (or oven), an acorn squash, salt, butter, and brown sugar. For an extra kick, you can even add a pinch of cayenne pepper to elevate the flavors. Trust me, it’s the secret ingredient that takes this dish to the next level!
While most people opt for roasting acorn squash in the oven, using an air fryer cuts down on cooking time significantly. In just 35 minutes, you’ll have delectably tender acorn squash ready to be devoured. Plus, the hands-on time is minimal, making it perfect for preparing alongside the rest of your dinner.
To make this super tasty side dish, you only need five simple ingredients:
- Acorn squash: Look for one that’s approximately 1 & 1/2 pounds.
- Butter: Adds moisture and richness to the dish.
- Brown sugar: Provides a delightful hint of molasses flavor.
- Salt: Balances the buttery sweetness.
- Cayenne pepper (optional but recommended): Adds a touch of heat and balance to the sweet sugar.
One of the great things about acorn squash is its versatility. There are so many different flavor combinations you can try, ensuring you’ll never get bored with it. While butter, brown sugar, salt, and cayenne are a fantastic combination, here are a few other recommendations:
- Cinnamon and honey or maple syrup
- Butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon
- Garlic, thyme, and rosemary
- Garlic, cumin, and lime juice
- Olive oil, salt, and pepper
How to Cook Acorn Squash in the Air Fryer
Making this air fryer acorn squash recipe is a breeze. Just follow these easy steps:
- Prepare the squash: Wash and dry the squash, then cut it in half along the ribs. Scrape out the seeds and pulp from each half.
- Air fry the squash: Place the squash in the air fryer basket, cut side up, and cook at 325°F for 20 minutes.
- Add the sugar and seasonings: Spread butter over each half, then sprinkle with sugar, salt, and cayenne pepper.
- Increase temperature and continue air frying: Increase the air fryer temperature to 375°F and air fry for an additional 10-15 minutes until golden brown and tender. Enjoy!
How Long To Cook Acorn Squash in the Air Fryer?
The cooking time for acorn squash may vary depending on its size and your air fryer. If your squash is larger than 1 & 1/2 pounds, you might need to extend the cooking time. Additionally, different air fryer models may have slightly different heating patterns. If your squash isn’t tender after 35 minutes, simply add a few more minutes until it reaches the desired texture.
Can I Make This In The Oven?
Absolutely! If you don’t have an air fryer, you can still enjoy this delectable dish by using your oven. Follow the same preparation steps, then place the cut squash on a baking sheet. Bake at 400°F for 50 to 60 minutes, or until the squash is fork-tender.
There are endless ways to serve this delightful acorn squash with brown sugar. You can scoop it directly out of the skin, cut it into chunks, or even mash it. It pairs perfectly with various entrees, such as baked chicken breast, crispy pork chops, or pork tenderloin. For a restaurant-worthy dinner, try serving it alongside honey-glazed salmon.
If you happen to have any leftovers (which is unlikely), store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days. When you’re ready to enjoy them again, simply reheat individual portions in the microwave or warm the entire half back in the air fryer.
More Easy Air Fryer Recipes
If you’re loving the ease and deliciousness of air fryer cooking, be sure to check out these other fantastic recipes:
- Air Fryer Baked Sweet Potato
- Air Fryer Onion Rings
- Breaded Air Fryer Pork Chops
- Hoisin Air Fryer Salmon
- Air Fryer Pineapple
- Air Fryer Zucchini Fries