Sweet and Spicy Baked Acorn Squash

As a dietitian, I talk to many clients who struggle to eat well on a regular basis. It's usually that the idea of cooking at home or spending a day meal prepping is simply overwhelming. And how could it not be when the expectation is to prepare complicated recipes with multiple ingredients or to take an entire Sunday afternoon to prep for the week ahead? I'm not saying there's anything wrong with either approach and if you're already doing that then great! Keep on truckin'. 

These "Back to Basics" recipes are for the people who avoid the kitchen, who don't want to prep a recipe with multiple ingredients, who avoid the Sunday afternoon meal prep, and in general just want to have a healthy diet without it taking over their life. 

Back to Basics recipes have two rules:

1. Less than 5 ingredients
2. Maximum of 3 dishes needed to prepare (goal: less to clean)


Acorn squash is a good source of vitamin C and potassium. 

1 acorn squash
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp cayenne (or to taste)
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp olive or canola oil

Wash and cut squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out seeds and discard. Cut squash into wedges. This can be done by putting the cut half down on the board and cutting at an angle into the middle of the squash. 
Toss wedges in a bowl with oil and maple syrup. Add spices and toss to cover. 
Put squash on a baking sheet and bake at 350F for 40 minutes or until soft. 

Note: This recipe is best prepared when squash is in season. I bought this acorn squash at a local farmers market since fall is prime time for squash of many varieties.