How To Roast It, Why You'll Love It, And Recipes To Do It

Are you looking for creative ways to eat more veggies?

Maybe you’ve roasted veggies before? Yeah, yeah of course you have. Boring topic.

Now, that’s where you’re wrong, young lady.

Oh wait, that’s what my mom used to say to me when I was a kid.

But seriously roasting veggies is like magic for so many reasons! And every year when fall rolls around I rediscover my love for roasted veggies.

To share my love for it, I hosted a free community food class all about roasting veggies, where I managed to make 7 roasted veggie dishes in a little over 2 hours to prepare! Whooo!

Fall is a great time to pick up a roasting habit because the weather is starting to get cool again and a caramelized roasted veggie just can’t be beat!




Why you’ll love roasting more veggies

#1 You’ll love roasting because it is so easy to cook: after chopping the veggies the oven does the work for you!

#2 You’ll love roasting because it is so easy to clean up from! You’ve only used one cooking sheet and to make it even easier, you could roast everything on parchment paper that you can peel off!

#3 You’ll love roasting because it really changes and intensifies the flavor: Roasting vegetables completely gives them a makeover in terms of flavor that you don’t get from other cooking methods. I think that is because the roasting evaporates some of the water in the vegetables, making them sweeter than they started. And also because they start to get the characteristic caramelized flavor that’s so unique and addicting!

#4 You’ll love roasting because it’s so flexible with ingredients that you can roast just about any kind of vegetable with any kind of spice combo!

#5 You’ll love roasting because it’s so flexible on cooking time! It not only doesn’t require you to be standing over a hot stove for an hour, but it also is forgiving if your husband’s going to be late for dinner and you let it cook a little longer than planned!

#6 You’ll love roasting because it can turn an otherwise questionable vegetable into a favorite! This is certainly true of veggies like turnips. Pop them into a roasted roots medley and you and your family will gobble them right down, no problem! Or try roasting radishes! Their bite really mellows out! True story from a CSA member’s husband who said he wouldn’t like Brussels Sprouts. After she roasted them, he ate them right up! Another true story from a CSA member: Son was picky about vegetables because of texture. Wouldn’t eat mashed squash or potatoes, but roasted….. another story! Roasting them got him loving them and asking for more!

#7 You’ll love roasting because it reduces the volume and makes it easy and delicious to eat more veggies than you would ordinarily!

#8 You’ll love roasting because the leftovers are so useful! Either cold as a salad (can we say just add feta cheese and a dressing!?!) or sautéed up as a hash or frozen for later use in soups… the sky’s the limit!


How to roast your veggies

After roasting seven dishes in a two hour period, I have come to realize that the basic steps of roasting veggies are the same almost every time!


The basic steps to roasting are:

  1. cut up vegetables/ or leave them whole
  2. add oil, salt, pepper, and optional seasonings of choice
  3. put in a dish
  4. roast at 400 (or 375-425) until desired tenderness and caramelization is reached (between 20-60 min)


Tips on roasting times

My two rules of thumb when roasting veggies:

  • The denser the vegetable, the longer it'll take to cook. Broccoli takes less long than beets.
  • The smaller the vegetable chunks, the faster they'll cook. Diced carrots will roast faster than whole carrots, for example.

Here are some vegetables that are delicious roasted, split up according to how long they take to roast. Again these are generalizations and highly dependent upon your size pieces and desired outcome.

Medium Roasting Time
(15 to 40 minutes)

  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers
  • Onions
  • Broccoli
  • Kale
  • Zucchini
  • Summer squash
  • Eggplant
  • Cabbage
  • Garlic

Long Roasting Time
(35 to 60 minutes)

  • Potatoes
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Winter squashes
  • Turnips
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Carrots
  • Beets
  • Rutabaga


Can you freeze roasted vegetables?

Yes, you can! The texture is not quite the same, but throw them in soups and the delicious roasty flavor will still be there. Try it!

Roasted vegetables really are wonderful. It's a completely different taste than boiling, steaming or sautéing, and makes a wonderful change of pace – especially in the winter, when having the oven on is a good thing!



Recipes to get you inspired to roast your fall veggies!

At my recent class, a bunch of food lovers got together to celebrate fall around platter after platter of roasted veggie recipes, all with feta cheese incorporated one way or another. Check out the awesome recipes that came out of it! All are approved as yummy!

Roasted Delicata and Red Onions with Feta

  • 2 Delicata squash, halved, seeds removed, sliced into ½” slices crosswise
  • 1 cup red onions, sliced thinly
  • 2-4 garlic cloves, peeled, and smashed
  • Olive oil and maple syrup to taste
  • salt, thyme, and red pepper flakes to taste
  • Feta cheese

Combine all ingredients except feta in a bowl and toss to mix together thoroughly. Spread out in one layer on baking sheet(s). Roast in oven at 425* until tender and browning, tossing occasionally to prevent sticking, about 30-45 minutes. Top with feta cheese and serve hot.

Roasted Root Medley with Feta

  • Carrots, peeled and diced
  • Beets, peeled and diced
  • Onions, chopped
  • Potatoes, chopped
  • Rutabaga, peeled and diced
  • Etc. your root veggie of choice (parsnips, parsley root, turnips, daikon radish, whatever you have)
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Optional dried spices, thyme and/or rosemary are good choices
  • Feta cheese

Peel and chop or dice your veggies. Toss with olive oil and salt and pepper and optional dried spices. Roast in the oven on a cookie tray at 400 until tender and caramelizing, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Stir a couple of times to prevent sticking. Remove from oven and sprinkle feta on top. Serve hot!


Mediterranean Roasted Cabbage Steaks with Basil Pesto & Feta

  • 1 Small Head Cabbage, sliced crosswise into 1/2-3/4" thick "steaks"
  • 4 TBLS+ Basil Pesto
  • 1 cup Shredded Parmesan Cheese
  • ¼ cup Feta Cheese, crumbled
  • handful of cherry or saladette tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 tbsp Mediterranean Seasoning (or pinches of the following spices, to taste: dried rosemary, ground cumin, ground coriander, and dried oregano)
  • salt, to taste
  • Fresh Basil, to garnish
  • OPTIONAL TOPPINGS include olives, mozzarella, mushrooms, roasted red pepper, marinated artichoke halves, etc.

Heat oven to 400 and grease a large sheet pan. Arrange cabbage steaks in a single layer on the sheet pan so the edges are all touching. Slather pesto on the steak halves and be generous as a lot will melt into the cabbage. Top with cheese and tomato. Bake until the edges of the cabbage are crisp and all of the cheese is bubbly, about 20 minutes. Sprinkle with seasonings and basil. Serve hot. You could have an extra scoop of Pesto for dipping!


Roasted Beet Salad with Feta and Walnuts

  • 1 bunch beet roots, chopped into bite-size pieces
  • 1-2 tbls of minced onion (or green onion tops)
  • 2-3 oz feta cheese, plain or herbed
  • 2 tbls minced walnuts
  • 2-3 tbls olive oil
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbls minced fresh herbs (chives, dill, parsley, etc.), optional

Toss chopped beets with olive oil and salt and put on baking sheet (lined with foil if desired). Roast at 400 for 45 to 60 minutes, turning once midway through, until the beets are tender when pierced. Chill. When cooled, put beets in a bowl and mix in onion, feta, and walnuts. In a small bowl or jar mix together olive oil, vinegar and optional herbs. Pour this over your beet mixture and serve cold.


Roasted Tomato Soup with Pesto and Feta

  • 3 pounds tomatoes, either quartered or whole depending on size
  • cooking oil or butter
  • 1 onion, sliced (or scallion or fresh onion top)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 cups+ chicken broth
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • balsamic vinegar, to taste
  • pesto, to taste (I used 2 TBLS)
  • cream, to taste
  • feta cheese

Roast the tomatoes on a baking sheet at 375 until softened and you can slip off the skins easily. Remove and discard the skins and keep all the juices and pulp in a bowl. Heat a pot with oil or butter. Saute onion until translucent, about 5-10 min. Add garlic and saute 1 more min. Add roasted tomatoes and broth. Simmer until onions are soft, about 10 more min. Puree. Add salt, pepper, balsamic vinegar, pesto, and cream to taste. Serve warm. Top each serving with crumbled feta cheese.


Roasted Vegetable Salad Recipe with Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • 6 bell peppers, any colors, sliced
  • 2 medium zucchini, sliced
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 4 TBLS olive oil
  • chopped lettuce or spinach
  • feta cheese, crumbled
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the dressing:

  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 4 tsp orange juice or lemon juice
  • 1 tsp oregano (or other dried herb as desired)
  • salt and pepper to taste 
  • 1 1/4 cup olive oil

Preheat oven to 400°F. In a large bowl, combine the sliced vegetables with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat.  Place the veggies on a baking sheet and roast for 20-25 minutes until browned and soft.  While the veggies are roasting, make the vinaigrette by combining the orange/lemon juice, vinegar, oregano, salt, and pepper in a medium-sized bowl. Slowly pour the olive oil into the vinegar mixture while whisking vigorously to emulsify.  Cool the veggies to room temperature. When cooled, put over a bed of greens of your choice and top with feta cheese and drizzle with vinaigrette.

Roasted Red Pepper and Feta Dip 

  • 5 Red bell peppers
  • 1/2 lb. Feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1 garlic, clove, peeled
  • 1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes, or to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste

Set oven on to broil. Place red bell peppers on a sheet tray lined with foil. Place pan in oven. Let the peppers char underneath the broiler for about 10 minutes (or more). Every two minutes turn the peppers to ensure they char evenly. Remove peppers from oven and place in a medium bowl, cover with plastic wrap. Let sit covered for 5 minutes. Remove peppers from bowl and peel off the charred skin. Take seeds out, remove stem, and dice peppers. In a food processor pulse the garlic first to mince.  Then add peppers, red pepper flakes, and feta cheese.  Process until smooth.  Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve cold with pita chips or cut vegetables.


Roasted Vegetable & Feta Pizza

  • olive oil
  • 2 medium green bell peppers, sliced
  • 2 medium red bell peppers, sliced
  • 2 medium yellow bell peppers, sliced
  • 4 small onions, quartered
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil, oregano, etc.
  • premade pizza crust
  • 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled

Preheat oven to 375°F. Grease baking sheet and place vegetables on it. Toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Bake 20 minutes; stir. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning (basil/oregano). Increase oven temperature to 425°F. Bake 20 minutes or until vegetables are crisp-tender and edges are lightly browned. Remove from oven. Prepare premade pizza crust per package instructions. Bake for ½ recommended time and remove from oven. Place roasted peppers and onions on crust and add feta. Bake pizza for remaining cook time based on package instructions.


Roasted Red Peppers and Tomatoes with Feta

  • 2-3 cups sweet red (or any ripe color will work) peppers, seeded and sliced into large peices
  • 4-5 cups tomatoes, cut into chunks
  • 1/4 cup+ olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (or to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme (or 2 tsp minced fresh thyme)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • feta cheese to taste

Add peppers and tomatoes to a casserole dish. Mix the olive oil, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper together and drizzle around on top. Roast at 400 degrees until soft and fragrant. Remove from oven and top with crumbled feta cheese. Serve hot!

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Comments (1)

Mary Margaret, Thank you so much for this info and the recipes. Great stuff! I appreciate the time you spent preparing this. Love, Pat Juska