easy sheet pan dinner recipe with sausage, kale, and squash
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Never underestimate the power of a one pot meal (or one pan, as the case may be). This easy sheet pan dinner with sausage, kale, and squash is the ideal weeknight meal for fall. It’s quick and uncomplicated yet deeply delicious. It’s totally adaptable, and fairly healthy too. And even better, it cleans up in no time.

The recipe comes from chef, author, and host of the “Kitchen Gods” podcast, Michelle Doll (who previously showed us how to make homemade Peeps!)—scroll down for some important notes and the full recipe, but first, let her show you how it’s done:

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Notes & Variations

As Michelle says, you shouldn’t be afraid of a little color on the kale and shallots; when they’re darkly caramelized and even a tiny bit burnt they taste amazing. So if you’d like even more golden-brown bits, you may want to give your squash a head start in the oven for about 10 minutes before you add your other ingredients.

You can also switch up the specific ingredients you use—try red onions instead of shallots (or white or yellow onions too); add other root vegetables or even apples; use a different type of sturdy green—but make sure your ingredients are roughly the same size and density so they cook at the same time.

fall sheet pan dinner with sausage, kale, squash

Guillermo Riveros

As for the sausage, choose any flavor you like, as long as it’s precooked so it holds together when sliced. Vegan sausage is a great choice that makes this meal wholly plant-based.

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When it comes to the squash, any winter squash will work, but different types may need to be prepared differently (butternut squash, for instance, would be best peeled and cut into chunks). Choose acorn squash, delicata squash, red kuri squash, or kabocha squash and you won’t need to peel them  (just scrub them well before cutting). We recommend saving the seeds to snack on; you can use them in any pumpkin seed recipe.

While kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper are all this dinner really needs, feel free to add any other spices you like to switch it up, from a simple sprinkle of smoked paprika to a dusting of Montreal steak seasoning or Chinese five spice powder.

Related Reading: 11 DIY Spice Blends to Give Your Dinner Some Pizzazz

Finally, be sure to line your baking sheet with parchment or foil for easier clean-up! But if you skip it, see how to clean a dingy baking sheet so it looks new.

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Easy Sheet Pan Dinner Recipe with Sausage, Kale & Squash

Get the full recipe below—you’ll probably memorize it the first time around:

Easy Sheet Pan Dinner with Sausage, Kale & Squash

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  • 4 sausages (any flavor, but choose the pre-cooked kind, not raw)
  • 1 bunch kale, washed and dried, tough ribs removed and discarded
  • 3-5 shallots, peeled
  • 1 acorn squash, scrubbed but not peeled
  • olive oil for drizzling
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a sheet pan with parchment or foil (optional, but makes for easier clean-up).
  2. Slice the sausages into 1/2-inch thick pieces at an angle and place on the sheet pan.
  3. Roughly chop kale leaves and add them to the sheet pan.
  4. Slice the shallots into rings (not too thin), then add them to the sheet pan.
  5. Cut the top off of the squash and scoop the seeds out with a spoon. Slice the squash into rounds about 1/2-inch thick, then cut the rings in half and add them to the sheet pan.
  6. Drizzle everything with olive oil and toss to thoroughly coat; give the kale a little massage. Sprinkle all with kosher salt and cracked black pepper. Feel free to add other seasonings if you like.
  7. Put the pan in the oven and roast for 20 minutes. You may want to rotate the pan about halfway through and stir the ingredients around if your oven has hot spots and things are browning unevenly. Give it another 10 minutes if you’d like more color and caramelization.

Experiment with the basic formula and technique all fall and winter. You won’t be disappointed—and you’ll never have to wonder what’s for dinner.

Even More Ideas

11 Sheet Pan Dinners for Easy Meals with Effortless Clean-Up

Header image courtesy of Guillermo Riveros

Jen is an editor at Chowhound. Raised on scrapple and blue crabs, she hails from Baltimore, Maryland, but has lived in Portland (Oregon) for so long it feels like home. She enjoys the rain, reads, writes, eats, and cooks voraciously, and stops to pet every stray cat she sees. Continually working on building her Gourmet magazine collection, she will never get over its cancellation. Read more of her work.
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