Fall is in the air and this a great time for some roasted butternut squash and brussels sprouts. With the addition of maple syrup, balsamic vinegar, and pork belly this will become a new favorite in your household.
Butternut squash is perfect for roasting. It is a go to vegetable for me especially in the fall and winter. Similarly to sweet potatoes it is great savory or sweet. In this recipe you will get a little of both.
In this recipe
This recipe is all about the the roasted butternut squash and brussels sprouts. When roasting these vegetables I like to leave the ugly leaves on the outside on since they will be charred. By adding the pork belly, maple syrup, and balsamic vinegar there are additional sweet and salty flavors that complement the vegetables.
A great thing about this recipe is that it can be made without the pork and it will still taste just as good. To do this reduce the maple syrup and balsamic by a tablespoon and a half each. By doing so the dish will not become too sweet.
If pork belly is not available thick cut bacon is a fantastic substitute for this recipe. The cooking time for that will be a little shorter but the flavors will still be there. Be aware of using bacon that has been flavored with things such as coffee, everything bagel, or anything other than brown sugar or pepper.
The pork will go in halfway about halfway through the roasting as it will only take about 10-15 minutes to cook. If the pork is done before the vegetables it is ok. Just remove from the oven and set aside until the vegetables are about done.
It is important to use pure maple syrup for this recipe as using the flavored syrup will not taste the same. Due to the high sugar content you will want to watch your reduction when it starts to boil. If left alone it can quickly scorch. This reduction will be very thick and little bit will go a long way.
Roasted Butternut Squash and Brussels Sprouts
- 2 foil lined sheet pans
- Large mixing bowl
- 1½ lbs butternut squash skinned, cubed
- 1 lb brussels sprouts halved
- ½ lb pork belly or thick cut bacon, cubed
- 3 tbsp avocado oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 4 tbsp maple syrup divided
- 4 tbsp balsamic vinegar divided
- ½ tbsp pepper ground
- Preheat the oven to 375°F or gas mark 5.
- In a large bowl toss the brussels sprouts and butternut squash in the oil and spread over one of the sheet pans. Roast for 45 min or until the squash is tender. Stir every 15-20 minutes to evenly cook all sides.
- While the vegetables are roasting toss the pork belly or bacon in a bowl with a tablespoon of the vinegar and a tablespoon of the maple syrup to coat. Pour on the second lined sheet pan and set aside. After the vegetables have been roasting for 30 minutes place in the oven and removed when cooked. Depending on the thickness of the protein this could be less than the remaining 15 minutes.
- In a saucepan heat the remaining maple syrup and balsamic vinegar until it boils and stir until the mixture thickens to a syrup.
- When the vegetables are done toss them, the pork, and maple-balsamic reduction together to coat evenly.