How to Cook Spaghetti Squash + Recipe

Spaghetti Squash
Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti Squash. Below I will discuss various ways you can cook the squash, and then I'll tell you how I prefer making my spaghetti squash dinner with a recipe.

When trying spaghetti squash for the first time, you need to keep an open mind. This will not taste like your Italian grandmothers homemade spaghetti or angle hair pasta. HOWEVER, use your favorite sauce (marinara, vodka, pesto, olive oil and cheese, or WHITE sauce), and it will taste delicious. Most of you probably had regular white grain pasta growing up and in the recent years transitioned to whole wheat pasta at home because you heard it was "healthier". You also probably didn't like the taste or texture of whole wheat pasta at first but stuck it out because you knew you 'should'. Well, pasta only really tastes like what sauce you're eating it with, so with spaghetti squash you get the flavor AND countless health benefits. And for all you calorie counters, spaghetti squash has LESS than ONE QUARTER the amount of calories in 1 cup of whole wheat pasta.

There are several different ways to making spaghetti squash. The two ways I make mine are either Baking or Boiling. Boiling is the shorter way to cook it, I will explain both ways.

*A spaghetti squash is ripe when it is firm and has no rings or natural bruises and yellow in color. Usually they are football size, however, recently I have seen them in a couple of grocery stores much, much smaller. They will taste the same, however your spaghetti strands will be much shorter than regular pasta.*

Spaghetti Squash
Spaghetti Squash

BOILING

There are two ways to boil your squash. >Boil it whole >Boil it cut in half

Boiling it whole will take longer, but it is much easier to cut the squash in half once it has been boiled.

  • Choose a pot large enough to hold the squash and fill it 2/3 with water
  • Put the pot on high heat and wait for the water to boil
  • Once the water boils, lower the heat to medium and plop the squash in.
  • Leave the squash for about 25 minutes, or until you can easily pierce the skin.
  • Take the squash out and let it sit on the cutting board until it cools down.
  • Cut the squash in half lengthwise.
  • Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds in the center of both halves.
  • Take a fork and scrap the insides of the squash starting from the rim and scraping down into the center of the squash. Do this until all of the squash has been removed into spaghetti like strands.

Boiling the squash takes less time but is harder to cut because it hasn't been softened yet. (This is the way I make mine).

  • Choose a pot large enough to hold the squash and fill it 2/3 with water
  • Put the pot on high heat.
  • While you're waiting for the water to boil, cut the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds in the center of both halves
  • Once the water boils, lower the heat to medium and plop the squash in*
  • Leave the squash for about 15 minutes, or until you can easily pierce the squash with your fork.
  • Take the squash out and let it cool.
  • Take a fork and scrap the insides of the squash starting from the rim and scraping down into the center of the squash. Do this until all of the squash has been removed into spaghetti like strands.

*You can boil one half of the squash and keep the second half wrapped in plastic wrap for a couple days.

Spaghetti Squash
Spaghetti Squash

ROASTING/BAKING

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  • Take your Spaghetti Squash and cut it in half lengthwise.
  • Scoop out the seeds.
  • Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
  • Place the two halves skin side up.
  • Put it in the oven for 30-45 minutes, until you can pierce the skin with a fork.
  • Take out the squash and let it cool.
  • Take a fork and scrap the insides of the squash starting from the rim and scraping down into the center of the squash. Do this until all of the squash has been removed into spaghetti like strands.

Boiling is faster, but if you have to shower and get ready, then the extra time is welcomed with the baking.

Spaghetti Squash Bolognese
Spaghetti Squash Bolognese

Spaghetti Squash Bolognese

Serves: 2 people
Prep time: 25 minutes (cook squash)
Cook time: 8-10 minutes

-1/2 Spaghetti Squash
-1/2 small yellow onion diced
-1/2 cup sliced crimini mushrooms
-1/3 lb ground beef
-1 cup organic tomato marinara sauce
-2 tbsp olive oil
-1 fresh chopped garlic clove
-pinch of salt and pepper

1. Boil 1/2 of the spaghetti squash. (See steps above)
2. When your squash is cooling after boiling it, put a pan on medium heat and add your olive oil, garlic, onions, mushrooms, and ground beef.
3. Once your ground beef is cooked, (about 4 minutes), add in your spaghetti squash strands.
4. Mix together and add a pinch of salt and pepper.
5. After every element is combined, pour in your tomato sauce.
6. Stirring occasionally, allow it to cook together for 5 minutes.
7. Serve!

(If you hate being in the kitchen longer than you have to... you could always throw in precooked meat that you have lying around or load in some precooked veggies, so you can easily take the hot squash and mix it with the sauce and veggies/meat in a bowl and microwave for 1 minute).

**Let me know if you have any questions!! :)**