Go Back

Ancho Chili Roasted Acorn Squash with Queso Fresco

This dish makes for a great unexpected side for your Thanksgiving table.
Course Vegetable
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword acorn squash, ancho chili, chili powder, lime, queso fresco, squash
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Servings 4


  • 2 medium acorn squash
  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ancho chili powder
  • Kosher salt, as needed
  • Freshly ground black pepper, as needed
  • 1 teaspoon grated lime zest
  • ¼ cup crumbled queso fresco
  • Handful cilantro leaves


  • Preheat oven to 375ºF. Cut both the squash in half lengthwise, removing the seeds and setting aside. Trim ¼-inch from the stem end and bottom of each squash and discard. Slice each half into ½-inch slices.
  • Toss in 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and arrange in an even single layer on a baking sheet. Season with the ancho chili powder, salt and pepper.
  • Roast the squash for 20 minutes then flip each piece and continue roasting until golden brown and tender, about an additional 15 minutes. Remove and set aside.
  • While the squash is roasting, clean the membrane from the seeds and discard, rinsing the seeds until separated and clean. Pat dry with a paper towel and toss with the remaining olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and arrange in a single layer on a small baking sheet. Roast until dried and golden brown, about 15 to 20 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally.
  • Arrange squash on a platter and top with the roasted seeds, lime zest, queso and cilantro leaves. Serve immediately.