Easy How To Cook Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti Squash is such a fantastic vegetable, and yet it often gets overlooked. These squash can keep for over a month in the pantry, so it's easy to buy one and have at the ready. Try it in place of, or mixed in with, your favorite pastas and noodles to incorporate more vegetables into your diet. In this quick post I'll tell you how to cut it, cook it, and some great ways to eat it.

Roasted Spaghetti Squash

Cutting Hard Squashes

How do you cut a squash? I get asked a lot about easier ways to cut winter squashes. It can be very intimidating to cut a large thing that rolls and resists your knife. Here's a few tips I always give to make things easier:

  • Whenever you have a round thing, you should always cut a flat edge to rest itself on so that it doesn't roll while you're trying to cut it. This is true with all fruits and vegetables. For Spaghetti Squash I always cut the ends off first. This gets rid of the stem, but also leaves a flat surface to stand it up on.
cutting the ends off of spaghetti squash
  • Once you have a flat end, stand the squash upright and cut down the center. Notice that I leave my fingers up and out of the way and the knife extends past my hand.
cutting spaghetti squash in half
  • If your knife is not very sharp OR not very big, you can put the tip and the center of the squash and cut down one side, then turn the squash around and cut down the other side.
cutting a Spaghetti Squash
What is the best way to cook Spaghetti Squash?

You'll see the full recipe in the post, but look below for some quick tips to make sure your spaghetti squash turns out perfectly every timeScooping Roasted Spaghetti Squash out of the Shell

Quick Tips for How to Cook Spaghetti Squash

  • After cutting the squash in half, use a spoon to quickly pull out the seeds and pulpy parts of the center.
  • Season liberally with salt and pepper so that it absorbs into the squash while cooking
  • Cook cut-side down on a baking sheet
  • I always add a little water to the pan. The water helps steam in the beginning to keep the squash moist on the inside, but then will evaporate to allow the squash to roast on the outside.
  • Test your squash for doneness by pinching the outside. You should be able to press into it and feel a slightly soft give, but not mushy and not hard.
  • When finished cooking, let your squash cool a little bit so that you can handle it, but scrape while still warm.
  • Scrape down lengthwise on the squash using the tines of a fork. This will draw out the "spaghetti" like strands of squash. They should be cooked through but have a slight crunch to them.
  • Once all the squash is pulled, you can let it cool and store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. This is a great meal-prep item for this reason.

The Health Benefits of Spaghetti Squash

As with most foods, it's not only about how to cook spaghetti squash, and what makes it delicious, but what are the benefits of eating it. Check out this article at Squash Nutrition and Health Benefits for all you need to know on how squash:

  • helps fight inflammation
  • provides high vitamin A
  • is high in fiber
  • is low on the glycemic index

What to Eat Spaghetti Squash With

  • The Half & Half: do you want to cut down on some of your simple sugar carbs but just can't get enough of those pastas? Try substituting 1 cup of spaghetti squash for half of your pasta. This is a great way to feed into a craving, but start the process of incorporating more vegetables and whole foods into what you eat.
  • Go full indulgence: Vegetables don't always have to be the good guys! I absolutely love to mix my spaghetti squash with this recipe for Vegan Artichoke Dip to make a creamy Spaghetti Squash Alfredo. It makes for a great side, or even it's own meal.
  • Spice it up: I love to mash up these Korean BBQ Meatballs and mix it in with roasted Spaghetti Squash and some sesame oil. OR, pan fry it with some of this Magic Masala Spice Mix for an Indian inspired side.

My general philosophy on food is that if you have it in the house, and you have it ready, then you will find fun ways to eat it. So go into this recipe thinking: "If I have the spaghetti squash already cooked and ready to go, then I will find a delicious way to eat it."

Recipe

Roasted Spaghetti Squash

How to cook spaghetti squash

An easy way to prepare this great, underappreciated vegetable
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Course Recipes- Sides
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 75 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 Spaghetti Squash
  • ¼ teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • ¼ teaspoon Black Pepper
  • Water for cooking

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350f.
  • Wash the outside of your spaghetti Squash
  • Here is a handy tip: Whenever cutting a round vegetable, you always want to make a flat surface first so it doesn’t roll while you are using a sharp knife. Always make a flat surface on the shortest side that is safest to cut, then you will have a flat surface to balance on when cutting a longer cut.
  • Carefully cut off the top and bottom of the squash. If the squash is very hard, you may need to rotate it while cutting to make it all the way through.
    cutting the ends off of spaghetti squash
  • Once you have the 2 flat sides, turn up to rest on the bottom.
    cutting spaghetti squash in half
  • Keeping your fingers out of the way, cut down the center of the squash to cut in half. If you have a short knife, you may want to start in the center of the squash and cut down one side and then flip around and cut down the other side.
    cutting spaghetti squash in half starting in the center
  • Using a spoon, scoop out the seeds and center pulp. Discard.
    scooping out the seeds from a spaghetti squash
  • Sprinkle the salt and pepper over the cut surface of the squash.
    spaghetti squash on a baking sheet with salt and pepper
  • On a clean baking tray, turn the spaghetti squash cut side down.
    spaghetti squash cut side down on a baking sheet
  • Slowly pour enough water in that it covers the surface of the baking tray but is only halfway up the sides.
  • Place the whole tray in the oven and bake for 35-55 minutes, depending on the size of your squash.
  • When the squash is ready, you should be able to pinch in the outside of the squash and feel it give, firmly but softly.
  • Remove the tray from the oven and flip over the squash. Let cool slightly, just enough for you to handle.
  • Using a fork, gently scrape the surface of the squash from top to bottom, pulling strands of the squash as you go. You should see noticeable “spaghetti” length strands.
    Scooping Roasted Spaghetti Squash out of the Shell
  • Continue until all of the squash is in strands.
    Roasted Spaghetti Squash

Nutrition

Serving: 2cupsCalories: 75kcalCarbohydrates: 17gProtein: 2gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0.3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.1gSodium: 332mgPotassium: 261mgFiber: 4gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 290IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 56mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Best Vegan Recipes, how to cook spaghetti squash, spaghetti squash
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