Roasted Vegetables

What to do

Making roasted vegetables is as easy as putting them in the oven but making the best roasted vegetables – soft and tender, browned and caramelized, full of intensified flavor – involves a few tips.

Keep in mind: Almost any vegetable can be roasted.

  1. Preheat oven
    1. You want the oven hot when you put in the vegetables. A less-than-hot oven will turn out less-than-browned vegetables. Preheat oven to 425oF. Generally, roast vegetables for 35-40 minutes. Cooking times may vary depending on types of vegetables.
  2. Cut vegetables into even pieces
    1. Smaller vegetables can be roasted whole, as long as they are of even sizes, so vegetables cook at an even rate. Generally, vegetables need to be trimmed and cut. Smaller, bite-sized pieces are easier to eat.
  3. Toss vegetables with oil
    1. Either in roasting pan or large bowl, drizzle vegetables with 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil or oil of your choice. Toss to coat as evenly as possible. Oil helps vegetables to brown. Add coarsely chopped garlic, slices of chilies or pepper flakes or other seasonings to taste.
  4. Don’t crowd vegetables
    1. You want plenty of hot air around the vegetables. The less the vegetables touch, the more evenly they brown.
  5. Sprinkle with salt
    1. Sprinkle a little salt (about ¼ teaspoon) before putting in oven.
  6. Roast on top oven rack
    1. Roasting vegetables in top third of the oven helps the vegetables brown.
  7. Shake or turn vegetables once or twice during cooking
    1. When vegetables start to brown, give the pan a good shake or use a spatula to turn the vegetables to move them around a bit.
  8. Roast thoroughly
    1. Roasted vegetables should be brown and tender. Keep vegetables in hot oven until they are both. If vegetables start to get too dark, cover with foil until tender, then cook for a final 5 minutes or so with foil off. If they aren’t browning, increase heat in oven and move pan to top of oven.
  9. ‘Finish’ the Vegetables
    1. Roasted vegetables are best with a final drizzle of olive oil and sprinkle of salt. Other final hits of flavor can include:
      1. Freshly ground black pepper
      2. Fresh lemon juice
      3. Minced herbs (mint, parsley, thyme or just a wee bit of rosemary)
      4. Balsamic vinegar
  10. Serve warm or let cool
    1. Roasted vegetables are great while warm but also can be served at room temperature. If you want to serve room temperature roasted vegetables, let them cool in a single layer, uncovered or loosely covered, so vegetables don’t start to steam each other and get soggy.