Roasting enhances the natural sweetness and flavor of vegetables. By first tossing the produce with a simple balsamic vinegar-based dressing, you’ll add additional flavor and end up with slightly crisp, beautifully browned vegetables that you can serve — hot or cold — as a side dish, toss into salads or use in soups. The key to successful balsamic roasted vegetables is to cut all the produce into a uniform size and cook vegetables of similar types and densities together.

Things You'll Need

Combine balsamic vinegar and mustard in a small bowl. Use about 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar and approximately 1 teaspoon of mustard for every 2 to 3 pounds of vegetables you plan to roast.

Add olive oil to the bowl, whisking constantly until the vinaigrette emulsifies. Plan to use about 1/2 cup olive oil to coat 2 to 3 pounds of vegetables.

Add seasonings such as salt, freshly ground pepper, minced or pressed garlic and chopped fresh or dried basil and thyme. Stir to combine. Set aside.

Choose the vegetables you want to roast. Divide them into three categories: dense, hard vegetables such as potatoes, carrots or winter squash; medium-soft vegetables such as onions, peppers, eggplant or summer squash; and thin vegetables like green onions, asparagus or green beans.

Wash the vegetables under cool running water. Pat them dry with paper towels or dish cloths. Peel them, if desired.

Use a sharp knife to cut vegetables into chunks, slices or strips of approximately the same shape and size. Leave vegetables less than 1 inch thick — such as green beans or asparagus — whole, only trimming off the ends, as needed. Keep the different types of vegetables divided into their separate categories.

Place any dense, hard vegetables you have prepared in a large bowl. Toss them with some of the balsamic vinaigrette, reserving enough for other vegetables, if you have any.

Transfer these vegetables to a rimmed baking sheet. Place the sheet in an oven preheated to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and allow the veggies to cook for approximately 45 to 60 minutes, stirring the vegetables with a spatula every 15 minutes. Remove the vegetables when they turn brown and can be easily pierced with a thin-bladed knife.

Repeat the same procedure with any medium-soft vegetables you prepared. Place them in the same oven, timing it so they roast for approximately 35 minutes and get done around the same time as the denser vegetables.

Roast thin vegetables in the same manner for approximately 12 minutes, either at the same time as one of the previous two sheets of vegetables or after you remove them from the oven to cool.

Combine all the balsamic roasted vegetables on a serving platter, use them to complete another dish, or cool and refrigerate them for later use.


Tips

  • Experiment with different types of mustard in your balsamic vinaigrette, such as Dijon, honey, spicy brown or horseradish.

  • While basil, thyme and garlic are typical additions to balsamic vinaigrette, add or substitute any spices, herbs or flavorings you prefer. Include crushed red pepper and cumin for spicier vegetables, honey for a smoother, sweeter flavor or whatever fresh herbs you have on hand.

  • If you’re pressed for time, stick to roasting vegetables of a similar type and density so that you don’t need to deal with separate pans and roasting times.