Tangy Pomegranate and Peanut Butter Roasted Winter Vegetables is our favourite kind of cold-weather weekday meal. In fact, we have been known to have this twice in one week. And not as leftovers. 🙂
As denotes an on-repeat weekday recipe, this one is low on effort and high on satisfaction. Chunky winter veg, roasted in the oven until golden edged and sizzling, are turned over in a no-cook, nutty, sour and warmly-spicy sauce. Sprinkle over with pomegranate arils and a handful of chopped parsley, and dinner is immediate and bursting with flavour. If you manage not to wipe a finger around your bowl to get every last drop of sauce, you are a stronger person than me.
What about that sauce?
You will be quite used to roasting vegetables. If you wish, roast them here as per your usual; we all have our own way. The reason I’m not fussed how you roast the vegetables is because, in this easy recipe, it is the sauce that is key. With its short roster of ingredients, think of this pomegranate and peanut butter sauce as a kind of North African satay sauce. And like a satay sauce, it’s just so darn versatile.
This vegan recipe makes a bit more sauce than you will probably use. So, save some back to dip in some crudites, pitta chips or warm bread. You can even use it like a traditional satay to flavour chicken, beef or tofu.
Tangy Pomegranate and Peanut Butter Roasted Winter Vegetables – the ingredients
You will need:
Cumin, fennel and caraway seeds
Harissa paste (optional)
Runny peanut butter (I like Pip n Nut)
Olive oil, of course
The above is the list I normally draw from, as they are what I tend to buy, and what we like. But I have made it with various other winter vegetables over the past months, as well as some year-rounders, like mushrooms and frozen sweetcorn kernels. You may need to adjust the roasting time, depending on what you use (certainly toss the corn kernels in later in the roasting time). For a mixture of softer and harder vegetables, either slide off the “fast ones” as they are ready, or add them a bit later.
I’ve given you some more vegetable and spicing options below. But this isn’t an exhaustive list. Be creative!
Variations to try
You can literally clean out your vegetable drawer and larder to make this recipe. But here are some ideas.
Another type of hard winter squash
Sunflower seed butter
Tahini (not my favourite for this though)
Za’atar (instead of the roasted seeds)
Zhoug (instead of harissa)
Need more protein? Chuck on some cubed or sliced tofu to the vegetables – that’s what I do more often than not. Or, add chopped roasted chicken or some cooked beans/lentils for the last five minutes, to heat through.
How to make this recipe
Start by toasting the spices. You will use this mix on the roasting vegetables and in the sauce. Pop the cumin, fennel and caraway seeds into a small pan and toast until fragrant – about 1 minute over a medium flame, occasionally shaking the pan. Watch the seeds carefully as they burn quite easily. Once toasted, pound them in a mortar and pestle, or blitz in a spice grinder.
Go ahead and start preheating your oven now, too. I set my fan oven to 190C. If yours is a non-fan oven, use 210C. For a Fahrenheit oven set to 410F. Or, do as you normally do for harder vegetables.
Now prepare the vegetables to roast. Peel the butternut squash and celeriac, then cut into large bite-sized pieces. Dice the courgette into large bite-sized pieces. Trim and slice the leek into thick coins. Halve the red onion, peel and cut into wedges. Add all to a large bowl and cover with the oil, and sprinkle on about one-third of the spices. Toss them around.
Add the vegetables to a large baking tray with sides. If you need to use non-stick paper do so. Place in the preheated oven. If you like, give the squash and celeriac a head start of 15 minutes. But it isn’t absolutely necessary. All in at the same time will mean the other veg will be a bit more cooked. Roast for approximately 30 minutes, turning once. Or start the butternut squash & celeriac, and add the rest to the tray after 15 minutes.
For more tuition on roasting vegetables, see this article from thekitchn.com.
Now make the delicious tangy sauce. Add the peanut butter, pomegranate molasses and extra spices to a bowl. Mix with a spoon until it comes together, adding the lemon juice and soy sauce to taste. Season and add harissa if you like.
To serve, spoon over the sauce as soon as the vegetables come out of the oven (otherwise it stiffens up a bit), tossing lightly with a spatula to coat – it might be messy! Then sprinkle over the pomegranate seeds/arils and the chopped parsley. Serve straight from the baking sheet to save on washing up an extra dish!
So, are you tempted by the sauce? Well, my good friend, I urge you to give in to that temptation. I had been thinking about this combination of flavours for months; I just knew it would tick so many of my own culinary boxes – tangy, nutty, creamy, warmly-spicy. And, when I finally made it, I nearly kicked myself for not making it sooner. I have even stirred the last couple of spoons of the sauce into a scaled down version of this recipe – so good!
If you are wanting a few more sauce ideas for vegetables, check out one of these here on Food To Glow – Vegan Aioli, Best Avocado Mayo, Broccoli-Blue Cheese Sauce, Black Olive Tapenade, Carrot-Miso Sauce, and Cilantro-Mint Chutney Sauce. I have loads more in my Index, under Sauces.
Tangy Pomegranate and Peanut Butter Roasted Winter Vegetables
A simple supper of roasted winter vegetables drenched in tangy pomegranate and peanut sauce. Any extra sauce is delicious as a kind of satay sauce, too. Sub in almond or sunflower seed butter if you like; change out the vegetables (ideas given). And, to add even more protein, nestle in cubes of tofu to the roasting vegetables.
- 1/2 butternut squash
- 1/2 courgette zucchini
- 1 leek
- 1/2 celeriac or jicama (different taste though)
- 1 red onion
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 1 tsp caraway seeds
- 100 ml loose, natural peanut butter
- 2 tbsp pomegranate molasses more to taste
- 1 small lemon
- 1 tsp soy sauce more to taste
- 1 tsp harissa paste optional, more to taste
- 1/2 pomegranate seeds/arils from
- 2 tbsp chopped parsley
Preheat the oven to 190C fan/210C/410F
Start by toasting the spices. You will use this mix on the roasting vegetables and in the sauce. Pop the cumin, fennel and caraway seeds into a small pan and toast until fragrant - about 1 minute over a medium flame. Watch carefully as they burn easily. Cool briefly, then pound in a mortar and pestle or blitz in a spice grinder.
Now prepare the vegetables to roast: Peel the butternut squash and celeriac, then cut into large bite-sized pieces. Cut the courgette into large bite-sized pieces. Trim and slice the leek into thick coins. Halve the red onion, peel and cut into wedges. Add all to a large bowl and cover with the oil, and sprinkle on about one-third of the spices.
Add the vegetables to a large baking tray with sides. If you need to use non-stick paper do so. Place in the preheated oven. If you like, give the squash and celeriac a head start of 15 minutes. But it isn't absolutely necessary. All in at the same time will mean the other veg will be a bit more cooked. Roast for approximately 30 minutes, turning once. Or start the butternut squash & celeriac, and add the rest to the tray after 15 minutes.
Now make the sauce. Add the peanut butter, pomegranate molasses and extra spices to a bowl. Mix with a spoon until coming together, adding the lemon juice and soy sauce to taste. Season and add harissa if you like.
To serve, spoon over the sauce as soon as the vegetables come out of the oven, tossing lightly with a spatula to coat - it might be messy! Then sprinkle over the pomegranate seeds/arils and the parsley. Serve straight from the baking sheet to save on washing up an extra dish!
Don't like peanut butter? Sub in almond butter or sunflower seed butter. You can use tahini, but I don't like it as much here.
Need to use other veg? Feel free to experiment with what you have and what you fancy. Sweet potatoes or carrots are great instead of squash. And jicama or rutabaga instead of celeriac is a good call, although they taste very different. Add mushrooms, sliced peppers, garlic, eggplant - anything you like.
More protein? Add cubes or slices of tofu (about 200g) to the roasting vegetables. That's often how I make it these days.
10 thoughts on “Tangy Pomegranate and Peanut Butter Roasted Winter Vegetables”
Thus sauce is the tangiest, tastiest treat. Brilliant
You know it, Andrew! I”m glad you don’t mind having it on repeat 😉 xxx
Ooo why do I always torture myself and read your blog when I’m hungry?! This sounds and looks brilliant. What a combo of smashing ingredients. Im writing my shopping list right now to make it in the next few days. Thank you!
Oh, I love your enthusiasm, Niki. In better days I would be making this for you for lunch. One day! xxx
Sadly in New Zealand pomegranate is a seasonal fruit limited to the early summer months. Interesting how aware you become of seasonality when you live at the edge of the world. It does add some special zing to my summer salads though.
Hi Anne. You can certainly make this without the added pop of zingy pomegranate arils. And, the wintry vegetables can be swapped for summery ones – sweetcorn kernels, eggplant, zucchini, peppers, fennel. It’s the sauce that’s the main thing 🙂
Back with a bang 😍 so comforting to hear your soothing writer’s voice again. Thank you for reminding us of your other awesome sauce ideas, too. Roast veg game strong!!
Aw, thank you, my Rachel. It’s good to be back and writing again. I’ve always been eating! xxx
Your food looks good and yummy!