Autumn is upon us and that means the months are getting colder as we head into winter. For many of us, that’s no reason to rejoice, but on the positive side, it does mean one of our favourite vegetables is finally in season. And you can bet we’ll be making the most out of the uniquely delicious spaghetti squash this year.
In case you don’t already know, spaghetti squash is a nutritious winter vegetable with a unique trick up its sleeve. Once cooked, its flesh separates into spaghetti-like fibres, which makes it a brilliant substitute for pasta and noodles. The rind even acts as its own bowl, although you can also scrape the strands out too if you’d rather plate up properly or finish them off with some other vegetables in the wok.
But let’s be clear, spaghetti squash isn’t just for those on low-carb diets. As well as being low in calories, high in fibre, and an excellent source of vitamins and minerals (including manganese and vitamins C and B6), it’s also just downright delicious. Surely everyone can appreciate that.
Here we’ll show you the best way to cook spaghetti squash, but don’t forget, you can also click here to learn all about other squashes too (including how best to cook them, of course).
How to cook spaghetti squash
It’s possible to cook spaghetti squash in several ways, including baking whole, steaming in a water bath in the oven, or slicing it into rings and baking them. However, we’ll show you our preferred method of halving the spaghetti squash and then baking it.
This method is our favourite because, unlike cooking the spaghetti squash whole, it releases some of the moisture so the squash strands don’t end up too soggy, and also caramelises the edges of squash for additional flavour. What’s not to like?
Just follow these simple steps:
- Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F).
- Cut the spaghetti squash in half lengthways. (See below for tips.)
- Drizzle 1 or 2 tablespoons of olive oil over the cut side of each spaghetti squash half and massage it over the inside and edges so that they’re fully covered in oil.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Place cut-side down on a lined baking tray and bake in the oven for 45–60 minutes, or until the flesh is easily shreddable.
Note that you can eat your spaghetti squash directly out of the rind or scraped out onto a plate – with your choice of sauce or toppings, of course (scroll down for recipe ideas).
How to cut spaghetti squash
As with many large squashes, cutting a spaghetti squash can be intimidating because it has such a hard rind. If you’re unsure of the best way to go about it, check out this handy video from Super Healthy Kids.
Spaghetti squash recipe ideas
Spaghetti squash is a great healthy alternative for pasta, so try it Italian-style with great recipes like this Tuscan spaghetti squash or this chicken alfredo stuffed spaghetti squash courtesy of Delish, this spaghetti squash with homemade basil pesto recipe from Food Fidelity, or Rosalynn Daniels’ spaghetti squash with eggplant marinara recipe.
For something a little different, Delish also has this mouthwatering recipe for spaghetti squash burrito bowls, while seafood lovers won’t want to miss this shrimp and scampi spaghetti squash recipe courtesy of Chungah at Damn Delicious.