The Best Way To Roast Different Vegetables All At Once

If you're inclined to mix — and roast — a multitude of vegetables, this trick is for you. Remember, when roasting your vegetables, size matters. Put simply, veggies that vary in size, shape, and texture often require different roasting times. Put them all on the same tray, and you risk undercooked carrots alongside burnt, too-crispy peppers. Of course, you can easily remedy this pattern by slicing and dicing vegetables until they match in size. However, texture is also important, and harder vegetables take longer to cook. So, if you have a mix of textures, and would rather keep your vegetables in mixed sizes, you should instead stagger their cooking times.

In fact, careful timing is one of the best strategies for evenly roasting an assortment of vegetables. Simply start with vegetables that require the longest cooking time. Roast these first. Then, add the remaining pieces as you go, depending on how long each vegetable needs. If you'd prefer to get them all in as soon as possible, however, you can, alternatively, add them from the get-go ... and remove them at different stages. The easiest way to do this is on different trays. Staggering the start — or end — times ensures that each of your vegetables will receive a proper and personalized roast. 

However, not all vegetables need to go in — or out — of the oven one at a time. Luckily, a few vegetables pair well together and coincide with similar roasting timelines. 

Time your roast with cooking times personalized to each vegetable

Who knew a schoolyard pick would come in handy in the kitchen? To maintain a tray of evenly-roasted vegetables, choose your teams wisely, and divvy up your produce according to cooking times. Even if you have an assortment of vegetables, chances are many of them cook similarly, so you can group them together. For example, you can put together zucchini, squash, and asparagus in one go; they require roughly 15 minutes of roasting at 450 degrees Fahrenheit. On the longer end of things, toss carrots and beets in your tray first. They'll need at least 45 minutes, so should get a head start before you add your other, softer vegetables. Other combinations that work well together include bell peppers and onions, which take about 30 minutes, and broccoli and cauliflower, which need about 20 minutes. 

Once you decide on your vegetables, stagger — and roast — them according to their ideal cooking time. Before they go in the oven, drizzle over some oil, and maybe add cornstarch to enhance vegetable crispness. The best part about this cooking strategy? If you stagger putting your vegetables in the oven from the get-go, they will simultaneously emerge, hot and ready to eat. Alternatively, if you choose to take them out at different times, you'll have something to snack on while you finish cooking.