When it comes to healthy and creative alternatives to traditional noodles, spaghetti squash pasta is a true game-changer. With its unique texture and low carbohydrate content, spaghetti squash is a must-try for anyone looking to cut down on carbs or simply add a new twist to their meals.
Whether you are vegetarian, vegan, Paleo, Whole30 or none of the above, this spaghetti squash pasta recipe is a perfect alternative to pasta.
Is Spaghetti Squash a Carb?
First, let’s address the burning question: Is spaghetti squash a carb? The answer is yes, but the carb content is significantly lower compared to traditional pasta, and of course, it has no gluten.
While regular pasta is primarily made from wheat flour and is relatively high in carbohydrates, spaghetti squash is a vegetable that contains carbohydrates in the form of natural sugars and dietary fiber.
Named for the way its cooked flesh naturally resembles delicate strands of spaghetti, this yellow squash has a slightly sweet and nutty flavor.
We eat a lot of spaghetti squash when it’s in season. Since we limit our consumption of gluten and wheat, I’m always looking for alternatives. Spaghetti squash definitely has more of a “spaghetti feel” than “zoodles” when you’re trying to watch your carbs or just eat more vegetables.
Spaghetti Squash Pasta is Versatile
If you’re looking for Whole30 spaghetti squash recipes, this fits the bill. The recipe is very forgiving, so don’t feel you need to stick to exact measurements. Once you’ve cooked the squash, the spaghetti squash sauce is just a quick stir-fry of any vegetables you desire.
Simply sauté mushrooms, onions, and garlic, add in tomatoes and spaghetti squash, then toss with toasted pine nuts and some fresh chiffonade of basil.
If you’re growing tomatoes or basil, this is a wonderful dish for your garden produce. I used a mixture of both halved cherry tomatoes, and an heirloom tomato from my garden.
If you aren’t vegan or following Whole30, this spaghetti squash recipe is fantastic with a generous sprinkle of parmesan cheese. Sometimes I’ll add grilled chicken or serve it with Pesto or No-Cook Summer Pasta Sauce.
How to Make Spaghetti Squash Noodles
Choose the perfect squash: Look for a spaghetti squash that feels heavy for its size and has a firm, matte skin. Avoid any with soft spots or blemishes.
Prepare your squash: Preheat your oven to 350°F. There are a couple different ways to cut spaghetti squash. Slicing it into thick rings will produce shorter, bite-sized strands. Cutting it in half lengthwise produces longer spaghetti-like strands. Using a sharp knife, carefully cut the squash as you prefer. Scoop out the seeds and stringy bits using a spoon.
Roasting: Place the squash rings/halves cut-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast them in the preheated oven for about 35-45 minutes or until the flesh is tender. You can tell it’s done when a fork easily pierces the skin and flesh.
Creating the Noodles: Once the squash is cooked and slightly cooled, use a fork to gently scrape the flesh. The flesh will naturally separate into strands resembling spaghetti.
Can you microwave spaghetti squash?
If you’re short on time, you can microwave spaghetti squash.
Pierce the squash with a knife several times to release steam. Microwave the squash whole for a few minutes until it’s soft enough to cut into.
Slice it either horizontally or vertically. Scoop out the seeds and stringy bits, then continue microwaving, a few minutes at a time, by placing the halves in a shallow microwaveable dish with a little bit of water.
This should take a total of 10 minutes.
Once your squash is cooked and separated into spaghetti strands, top it with your favorite veggies or sauce.
Whether you’re following a specific diet or simply looking to experiment with flavors, spaghetti squash pasta will delight your taste buds and keep your meals exciting. I hope you enjoy this versatile spaghetti squash with mushrooms and tomatoes recipe!
Spaghetti Squash Pasta with Tomatoes and Mushrooms
- 1 large spaghetti squash cooked “al dente”, about 6 cups.
- 2 cups tomatoes diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 8 ounces mushrooms sliced
- 1/3 cup onions or shallots, chopped, about 1 small
- 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
- fresh basil, a handful, cut chiffonade
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil
- Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
- Pinch of red pepper flakes if desired
- Optional: Parmesan cheese
- Cook spaghetti squash. (see above) When cool enough to handle, slice in half, remove seeds and stringy bits and shred with 2 forks. Set aside squash.
- In a large saute pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions and mushrooms, stirring constantly, about 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and stir another minute or two, just until fragrant. Don't let garlic brown.
- Add tomatoes and continue stirring.
- Add cooked spaghetti squash and toss until squash is hot and vegetables are evenly distributed.
- Toss with fresh basil and toasted pine nuts. Season to taste with kosher salt, pepper and a pinch of red pepper flakes if desired. (If desired, toss with fresh parmesan cheese)