What’s a “sheet-pan dinner,” you ask? Just about the best thing to happen to time-starved cooks everywhere. Take a big ‘ol rimmed cookie sheet, add vegetables, some flavourful meat, a dash of spice and salt, and bake it all up until the veg are soft and brown, the meat is cooked and juicy, and your house smells like you spent all day—and a pile of pots and pans—searing, roasting and braising. Are you with me?
If you needed a reason to love cool-weather cooking, this is it. A summer barbecue (RIP) may be wonderful but a sheet-pan dinner like this one is next-level, cozy, delicious comfort food that cooks while you do more important things (I recommend a glass of white wine and an episode of Olive Kitteridge—-oh mylanta!).
This sheet-pan dinner features turkey sausage, which I think is particularly well-suited to the sheet-pan genre because it has a whole bunch of built-in flavour that permeates all of the veg roasting underneath it. Choose the most flavourful sausages you can find; I buy good filler-free ones from a butcher near me. Kiwi will tell you that super-spicy sausages make this “possibly the best thing I’ve ever eaten,” but to his disappointment I usually prefer something that won’t leave our kids screaming bloody mouth-burning murder (honey-garlic or maple—stuff like that).
The recipe calls for 10-12 cups of mixed winter veg, which makes this a great dinner for using up the odds and sods taking up room in your fridge. In the version pictured here, I used a combination of butternut squash, sweet potatoes, red-skinned potatoes, cauliflower and brussels sprouts. But I’ve also added beets (delicious, if you don’t mind the whole thing turning a lovely shade of pink), turnips, radishes, parsnips and carrots.
You need a BIG rimmed sheet-pan for this recipe. And by BIG, I mean the biggest one you can find. One that is so large you can only just slide it into your oven. If you don’t have such a pan, buy one. It will change your veggie-roasting (as well as your cookie-baking and granola-toasting) game in the best possible way. With a large pan you can spread the veggies out into a single layer, which gives them room to get brown and a little crispy—the way roasted veggies ought to be.
Finally, kids (or Kiwi) might enjoy this with a little squirt of ketchup and adults with some dijon mustard or sriracha.
- 10-12 cups winter vegetables, cut into approx. 1" chunks (see note)
- 1 medium red onion, chopped into approx. 1" pieces
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon herbes de Provence
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 to 1½ pounds good quality flavourful turkey sausages
- A few large handfuls of baby spinach or another tender leafy green
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- Additional sea salt and pepper, to taste
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and line a large (at least 17" long) rimmed baking pan with parchment paper.
- Arrange the vegetables and onion on the baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with the herbes de Provence and 1 teaspoon sea salt and toss until the veg and onions are evenly coated in the oil and spices.
- Nestle the sausages into the veggies and place the pan into the preheated oven.
- Bake for 30 minutes, stir everything around a bit, and then bake for another 15 minutes or so, until the vegetables are soft and brown and the sausages are cooked through.
- Transfer the sausages to a plate, and toss the vegetables with the baby spinach (the heat of the vegetables will wilt the greens), apple cider vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Return the sausages to the pan and serve immediately.