This Pesto Spaghetti Squash is a low carb way to satisfy your pasta craving!
Raise your hand if you’re trying to eat a healthier diet this year. One of the things the average person usually tries to cut back on when attempting to lose weight, or just eat healthier, is carbs. The dreaded carbs, right? Personally, I don’t think carbs are the enemy, but that discussion would be enough for it’s very own blog post and I’m not going to tackle it today (and technically winter squash is a carb, but it’s nutrition profile is obviously completely different than the white pasta, white bread, sugary cakes and pastries you are used to associating with the word CARBS). Regardless, this Pesto Spaghetti Squash is delicious and satisfying and you’ll fool your brain into thinking you are eating actual pasta without all the heavy calories. Win!
How to Prep Spaghetti Squash
Spaghetti Squash is really simple to prepare once you get it cut open. Cutting it open is sometimes the hardest part. You need a big sharp knife and you need to be very careful because the squash is very hard.
Once it’s open, you scoop out the seeds and fibers with a spoon until it’s clean. You can save the seeds and roast them to snack on too, just like pumpkin seeds!
Turn It Into “Noodles”
Once the squash is baked, it will easily form strands by scraping the flesh with a fork. From there, you can serve it however you wish. The squash itself has a very mild flavor, which makes its the perfect accompaniment for my flavorful Parsley Kale Walnut Pesto – simply mix it together and, voila, Pesto Spaghetti Squash! You can also toss the squash with marinara or roasted veggies, throw it in a stir fry, add it to soups, tacos, enchiladas, etc. Your options are limitless!
Budget Friendly and Figure Friendly
Pesto Spaghetti Squash is a budget-friendly, waist-friendly (1 cup of spaghetti squash is only 76 calories – not including the pesto. Compare that to about 220 calories in a cup of plain spaghetti pasta), even kid-friendly recipe for any day of the week! The squash/pesto combo will also provide you with plenty of vitamin A, vitamin C, B vitamins, fiber, folate, vitamin K, omega-3 fats, protein, and MORE!
Pesto Spaghetti Squash
I hope you love this Pesto Spaghetti Squash as much as we do. If you try it, please come back and leave me a comment below with your feedback. You can also find me on social media. Be sure to tag @veggie_inspired and #veggieinspired so I’m sure to see it. Enjoy!
- 1 spaghetti squash
- 2 tsp olive oil
- sprinkle of salt/pepper
- 1 recipe Parsley Kale Walnut Pesto
- 1/2 cup fresh cherry tomatoes (halved) (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees C.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Carefully cut the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise.
- With a spoon, scrape out the seeds and fibers.
- Place each half on the prepared baking sheet cut side up and pour 1 tsp olive oil into each half. With your fingers, spread the olive oil all over the cut side of the squash. Sprinkle with salt/pepper.
- Turn the squash cut side down on the baking sheet and bake for 35-55 minutes, until desired tenderness is reached.
- The amount of time baked will depend on the size of your squash. A smaller one will take less time than a larger one. It will also depend on how tender you want the strands. For strands with a slight crunch, bake it less. For strands that are super tender, bake it longer. You can easily check the doneness by using a fork to pull away a few strands and doing a taste test....start checking around 35 minutes.
- When squash is fully cooked, using a fork, "scrape" the inside of the squash so the strands come loose. Continue until all the strands have come away from the peel.
- Toss the squash "noodles' with the Parsley Kale Walnut Pesto and top with cherry tomatoes, if desired.
- Serve immediately.
~I like my "noodles" with a slight bit of crunch left...almost like an al dente pasta noodle. I had a large squash and baked it 45 minutes.