Air Fryer Delicata Squash Rings

Get this dinner on the table quickly with this easy side dish! This air fryer delicata squash recipe comes together in just a few minutes and is the perfect way to add fall flavor to your dinner plate.

Warm delicata squash on a sheet pan after air frying.

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 small 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 these 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.

Why you’ll love this Air Fryer Delicata Squash Recipe


  • So easy: Not only are delicata squash easy to cut, but the cooking time is so quick! You can have this air fried delicata squash on the table in no time.
  • Tons of flavor: You’ll be surprised at just how much nutty flavor is in this simple roasted delicata! It’s one of the sweetest squashes and can handle robust flavors.
  • Lower carb: Did you know delicata is one of the lowest carb squashes? It’s a healthier option to include through the winter months.

Equipment

For air frying the perfect delicata squash, you’ll need:

Half moon shape slices of Delicata squash with curry powder seasoning.

Ingredients

  • Delicata squash: Wash and slice into thin rings. The thin edible skin can be left on!
  • Olive oil: A drizzle of nutty olive oil brings a little bit of gourmet flavor and develops that crispy texture we want.
  • Curry powder: Delicata yellow squash really absorbs the flavor from spices well, have fun with it! Curry is one I go to a lot, but feel free to put your own twist on it.
  • Maple syrup: Optional to add extra sweetness. 
  • Sea salt or kosher salt: Don’t forget to season! Black pepper can also be added if you’d like. 

How to Cut Delicata Squash Easily

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. Its smaller size and relatively thin-walled quality make it very easy to cut. Follow the instructions below for the best way to cut delicata squash.

  1. Wash and dry the squash.
  2. Cut off the ends of the squash. Set the bottom of the squash on your cutting board 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 halves cut side down and slice into whatever shape you desire.

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

How to Cook Delicata Squash in Air Fryer

  1. Preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Clean and cut the delicata squash into thin squash rings (approximately 1/4 inch wide; half moons).
  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 your air fryer basket. 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.
Oil and seasoning coated delicata squash on an air frier rack.

Storing

Fridge: Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 7 days. In a hurry, this squash is also pretty good to eat cold!

Freezer: Like most “fried” foods, they don’t freeze well after they are cooked. Because this is a tender vegetable, freezing wouldn’t be ideal.

Serving Suggestions

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. This is one of my favorite recipes to use in place of traditional fries. So healthy!
  • 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 

Tips & Variations

  • Have fun with flavor! Sprinkle your favorite spices, like chili powder, garlic powder, and more. It’s also great with a little sprinkle of brown sugar.
  • Make a double batch. I can eat an entire delicata in one sitting just snacking on it. You’ll be thankful to have extra in the fridge for quick salads and even scrambled eggs.
  • You can use the same spices for other squashes, but they’ll need to be cut differently (and likely peeled).
  • To remove the seeds and stringy flesh easily, use a large spoon or even an ice cream scoop!
  • Be picky about the freshness of your squash. Only use firm, hard delicata squashes.
  • Feel free to take this air fryer recipe in a sweet direction and replace the curry powder with pumpkin pie spice. So good!
  • No air fryer? Bake your squash rings on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet in a 400 degree oven.

FAQs

Do you leave skin on delicata squash?

You absolutely can! The skin of Delicata squash is very thin 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 easy 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 at a high temperature or cooking with hot air, 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 cooking delicata squash in an 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!

Is squash good in the air fryer?

So good! I love finding easy ways to prepare all sorts of food without the guilt that traditional deep-fried foods tend to give me. Air fried delicata squash is so good and I’ve also air fried all kinds of winter squashes. On a whim, I air fried an acorn squash, cut into thick rings, and it turned out to be a great side dish for the savory secreto iberico I made the other day! Early winter gives us a lot of time to play with all the different ways to prepare squash – try them in the air fryer next time!

Related Recipes

Vegetables are so abundant in late summer and early fall. Here are some other side dishes and main dish recipes that incorporate a lot of veggie goodness:

Easy air fryer delicata squash rings recipe.
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!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Course Appetizer, Breakfast, dinner, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings
Calories 33 kcal

Equipment

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.

Nutrition

Calories: 33kcalCarbohydrates: 0.3gProtein: 0.1gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 0.5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.4gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gSodium: 291mgPotassium: 9mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 0.02gVitamin A: 8IUVitamin C: 0.1mgCalcium: 3mgIron: 0.2mg
Keyword curry powder, delicata, delicata squash, winter squash
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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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