Spaghetti squash has a unique quality when cooked. If you draw the tines of a fork through the flesh, strands that resemble spaghetti appear effortlessly. There’s enough of a similarity to the pasta that spaghetti squash prepared this way is sometimes used as a substitute for noodles in low carb diets. You’ll actually see spaghetti squash “noodles” serving as a bed for marinara sauce or bolognese.
Convincing? Not exactly.
Nevertheless, I thought I’d prepare spaghetti squash recipe without trying to tell myself it’s pasta. It’s easy to appreciate the squash for what it is: a mildly sweet, nutritious (high in beta carotene, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, potassium, omega fatty acids) winter vegetable. Spaghetti squash offers a crunchier texture than traditional roasted or mashed squash dishes. Its flavor is somewhat mild – a cross between butternut squash and zucchini, but can surprisingly hold up to different types of sauces or dressings.
Sure, any spaghetti squash recipe offers all the nerve-wracking hassle of cutting into a large oblong squash, but once its halved, roasted and tossed with a quick dressing or sauce, you’ll have an easy and enjoyable cold weather side dish.
Simple Spaghetti Squash Recipe
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 2 T olive oil
- 3 T Earth Balance spread
- ½ c yellow onion, diced
- ½ t chili flakes
- 1 T maple syrup
- 1 T apple cider vinegar
- 1 c fresh parsley, chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 375.
- Cut the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and related pulp. Place in a roasting pan or rimmed baking sheet cut sides up. Rub with olive oil and sprinkle with a healthy amount of salt and pepper. Cook about 45 minutes and remove from oven, setting aside to cool for about 10 minutes.
- In a small saute pan, heat Earth Balance spread until melted. Stir in yellow onion and chili flakes, and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add maple syrup and vinegar and continue to cook another 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in parsley.
- Using a sturdy fork, scrape the flesh of the squash lengthwise so that spaghetti-like strands emerge. Do this for both halves and discard skin. Transfer squash to a large bowl.
- Pour the onion mixture over the squash and mix thoroughly. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Top with additional fresh parsley, if you like.