Air Fryer Delicata Squash Rings

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Delicata squash is easily one of the best squash types out there. It’s sugar-sweet, small enough to cut without breaking your knife, and you don’t even have to peel it! Even better…it cooks quickly in your air fryer for an easy fall side dish or healthy snack. Try this super easy air fryer delicata squash tonight!

What is delicata squash?

Delicata squash is one of the most popular types of squash, although I’d never heard of it until I was an adult!

It’s a smaller squash known for its cylindrical shape, yellow skin, and its green stripes. It’s truly the perfect size!

Delicata squash is a very sweet squash. It’s so sweet that it’s also known as the sweet potato squash!

If you’ve never tried it, it tastes like a cross between butternut squash and sweet potato. It really hits that sweet spot!

Despite tasting similar to sweet potato, delicata squash has way fewer carbs. In fact, a 1 cup serving of delicata squash has 10 g carbs versus 40 g in the same size serving of sweet potato. Learn more about the nutritional value of delicata here.

My favorite way to use up delicata squash is to roast it in curry spiced rings. The curry powder brings out the natural sweetness. This simple recipe has an incredible flavor with minimal effort! It’s a delicious side dish that comes together quickly.

This air fryer delicata squash goes with everything!

I love using this squash in so many different ways.

  • Bake until crispy for crunchy squash chips
  • Add it as a garnish on a delicious salad with pear, blue cheese, and walnut
  • Eat it as a side dish with roasted chicken and broccoli
  • Mix it into a green chile egg casserole for some sweetness to balance the heat
  • Enjoy as a healthy, low carb snack

Equipment for Air Fryer Delicata Squash

You’ll need:

  • A cutting board
  • A sharp knife
  • An air fryer or oven set to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Large bowl
  • If using a regular oven, you’ll need a baking tray and liner too

Ingredients

1 delicata squash, washed and sliced into thin rings
1-2 tbs olive oil
1 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp sea salt or kosher salt

What is the easiest way to cut a delicata squash?

The number one reason people avoid cooking squash is because of how hard it is to cut.

I totally get it…Some of those huge butternut squashes will bend even your best chef’s knife!

But my friend, delicata isn’t like that. Delicata is easy. It’s small and relatively thin-walled, so it’s very easy to cut. Follow the instructions below for the best way to cut delicata squash.

how to cut delicata squash

How to cut delicata squash

  1. Wash and dry the squash.
  2. Cut off the top and bottom of the squash so you can stand it straight up.
  3. Center your chef’s knife across the top of the squash.
  4. Press down firmly and gently wiggle to cut all the way through.
  5. Scoop out the seeds. (Save these to bake like pumpkin seeds!)
  6. Place squash cut side down and slice into whatever shape you desire.

For this recipe, we’re going to cut the squash into small slices into crescent moon shapes.

Air Fryer Delicata Squash Recipe

  1. Preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Clean and cut the delicata squash into thin squash rings (approximately 1/4 inch).
  3. Add the squash, olive oil, curry powder, and sea salt to the mixing bowl and toss to coat.
  4. When the air fryer is up to temperature, add all of the squash rings to the basket of your air fryer. Try to add them in a single layer if possible.
  5. Air fry for approximately 10-15 minutes. Halfway through, shake the basket to ensure even baking.
  6. Remove the squash when it turns golden brown on the edges.
  7. Preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  8. Clean and cut the delicata squash into thin squash rings (approximately 1/4 inch).
  9. Add the squash, olive oil, curry powder, and sea salt to the mixing bowl and toss to coat.
  10. When the air fryer is up to temperature, add all of the squash rings to the basket of your air fryer. Try to add them in a single layer if possible.
  11. Air fry for approximately 10-15 minutes. Halfway through, shake the basket to ensure even baking.
  12. Remove the squash when it turns golden brown on the edges.

Do I need to peel delicata squash?

Nope! Delicata squash does not have a tough skin. Because of this, you don’t need to peel or remove the skin before eating.

That sounds kind of weird, right?

I was reluctant to try it at first because it seemed like it would be gross or unusual. It was actually delicious and I never peel my delicata squash now unless I’m using it in a soup or mashing it.

Let’s be honest…I almost never do either of those things because this recipe is so simple!

Can I use a different oil?

Of course! I almost always roast in olive oil even though it’s not the ideal oil for the purpose.

If you’re roasting or cooking at a high temperature, you want an oil with a high smoke point. Some great options include coconut oil, avocado oil, lard, or tallow.

Avoid butter or unrefined seed oils that have a lower smoke point.

You can learn more about the smoke points of your favorite oils here.

Do I have to make this in an air fryer?

Absolutely not! I roasted delicata squash in the oven for a long time. When I tried it in the air fryer, I realized how much faster it cooked and now that’s my go-to method.

In the oven, you’ll typically roast delicata for 20-30 minutes at 400. Just remember to watch it so it doesn’t burn!

Can I use different spice blends on this air fryer delicata squash?

Think of this approach as a method, not a specific, do-it-my-way recipe.

Personally, I love to eat my air fryer delicata squash exactly like this. However, you might want to change up the seasoning or add a little more black pepper. Feel free to try it with some pumpkin pie spice for a perfect fall dessert. Get creative and have fun!

Oh yeah, and this recipe is delicious with a little maple syrup…It’ll help the squash caramelize a little more. So good!

air fryer delicata squash ninja foodi

What type of air fryer do you have?

We had an Instant Pot brand air fryer for a long time, but it started to break and the nonstick coating started to peel (which is not good).

It gave off a weird plastic smell every time I used it. Instead of continuing to repair it, we decided to upgrade to a multipurpose convection oven that used stainless steel instead of nonstick-coated metal.

We ordered the Ninja Foodi air fryer that can do way more than air fry. We wanted an item that was smaller and faster than our oven so we could cook and bake with less energy usage.

Plus…no weird plastic chemical smell even on the first bake. We’re obsessed with the stainless steel air fryer basket and the special sear plate!

It even folds up to take up less counter space! No more lugging an awkward appliance in and out of the pantry. We really couldn’t be more pleased with this air fryer and recommend it to everyone!

air fryer delicata squash rings

Air Fryer Delicata Squash

Delicata squash bakes up quickly in the air fryer, making this a quick, healthy, and delicious side dish!
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Course Appetizer, Breakfast, dinner, Snack
Cuisine American

Equipment

  • 1 Air fryer
  • 1 Large bowl
  • 1 Cutting board
  • 1 Sharp knife

Ingredients
  

  • 1 whole delicata squash
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp kosher or sea salt

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Clean and cut the delicata squash into thin squash rings (approximately 1/4 inch).
  • Add the squash, olive oil, curry powder, and sea salt to the mixing bowl and toss to coat.
  • When the air fryer is up to temperature, add all of the squash rings to the basket of your air fryer. Try to add them in a single layer if possible.
  • Air fry for approximately 10-15 minutes. Halfway through, shake the basket to ensure even baking.
  • Remove the squash when it turns golden brown on the edges.
  • Preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Clean and cut the delicata squash into thin squash rings (approximately 1/4 inch).
  • Add the squash, olive oil, curry powder, and sea salt to the mixing bowl and toss to coat.
  • When the air fryer is up to temperature, add all of the squash rings to the basket of your air fryer. Try to add them in a single layer if possible.
  • Air fry for approximately 10-15 minutes. Halfway through, shake the basket to ensure even baking.
  • Remove the squash when it turns golden brown on the edges.
  • Serve warm or cool and store in the fridge for up to 7 days.
Keyword curry powder, delicata, delicata squash, winter squash
easy air fryer delicata squash rings recipe

Have you tried this air fryer delicata squash?

Well, what’d you think? Did you mix up the flavors? How did you use it? Share your experience in the comments below!

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