Spaghetti squash is a mild and delicious squash to roast up to tender perfection, easily shredded with a fork to create delicate spaghetti-like strands. Super flavorful when combined with caramelized onions, mushrooms, spinach, garlicky tomatoes and white beans, this spaghetti squash recipe is a vibrant and healthy fall meal that’s both cozy and nourishing!
Reading: vegetarian spaghetti squash dish
A Scrumptious, Veggie-Filled Meal Fit for Autumn
One of my favorite things about shopping in the markets during the fall season is seeing the plethora of gorgeous pumpkins and squash available to not only decorate the house, but to cook with!
I use different varietals of squash for many different recipe preparations, and love how the color of this amazing produce matches the colors often found in the autumn sky at sunset, wonderfully vibrant orange and yellow hue.
While there’s so much to appreciate about squash, from their delicate flavor to the quick and easy preparation yielding tender, sweet-savory flesh, I really love how each has a slightly different texture that lends itself to a specific and unique presentation, perfect for all sorts of scrumptious add-ins that create a healthy meal.
Spaghetti squash is a terrific squash to cook with, and if you’ve never tried your hand at preparing it, you’re in for a real treat with this vibrant spaghetti squash recipe with sauteed veggies.
Roasted up to tender perfection, the spaghetti squash flesh is then fluffed or shredded with a fork to create strands that are spaghetti-like (hence its name), excellent to be combined with other flavorful ingredients for a complete meal both comforting and nourishing.
This baked spaghetti squash recipe, brimming with lots of flavorful veggies such as caramelized onions, mushrooms, spinach, garlicky tomatoes, white beans plus a crispy sprinkle of toasted breadcrumbs, is rich in flavor and color. It is hands down my new, favorite healthy fall recipe, and I have a hunch you’ll love it too!
How to Make Spaghetti Squash a Cozy, Vegetarian Meal
Roasting spaghetti squash in the oven until mildly sweet and delectably tender is the optimal way to prepare it, in my opinion.
The best way to do this is to slice the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds, then brush each cut-side and cavity with a bit of oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper, plus a few other seasonings for additional flavor. Then, the squash is placed cut-side down onto a baking sheet to roast.
After about one hour, the spaghetti squash will be soft and tender with a bit of golden caramelization around the edges, which equals lots of flavor.
Once the spaghetti squash is tender, using a fork to gently scrape and sort of “fluff” the flesh into its spaghetti-like texture is easy, making it ready for any other add-ins or preparations you’d like.
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For my spaghetti squash recipe here, I like to combine the “spaghetti” strands in a pan with a variety of fragrant sauteed veggies adding loads of texture and light, garlicky flavor. I also add some creamy white beans for a little more depth and extra protein.
I then divide this mixture evenly between my reserved squash shells (which I leave a bit of a border in to keep the shape better), and top with a sprinkle of toasted breadcrumbs for added flavor. For a completely vegan presentation, I leave off the parmesan cheese, or even sub a vegan cheese here. But if I’m craving a touch of real, savory cheese, then I’ll add a small sprinkle of some real-deal, grated parmesan.
Here’s a glance at how I bake my spaghetti squash and prepare my recipe: or just jump to the full recipe…)
- To get started, I cut my spaghetti squash in half lengthwise using a sharp knife, and carefully scoop the seeds out to clean the cavities (I typically leave the stringy bits behind—they just add to the texture); I then brush a bit of olive oil over each cut-side and cavity, and season them very well.
- Next, I place the spaghetti squash onto my prepared baking sheet cut-side down, and bake at 400° for about 1 hour, or until easily pierced with a skewer.
- I allow the squash to cool just enough so that I can handle it (about 20-25 minutes), and then using a fork, I gently fluff/scrape the flesh into spaghetti strands and scoop it out of the shells, reserving the shells and leaving a bit of a border on the bottom and the sides to help the shell keep its shape.
- To prepare my sauteed veggies, I begin by caramelizing my onions, followed by sauteing my mushrooms; those are removed from the pan, and then I add some cherry tomatoes to blister and soften/split for a few moments; next, some garlic is added in, and then I add back to the pan the onions and mushrooms, followed by the spinach and white beans.
- I add in a drizzle more olive oil to make the mixture flavorful and juicy, and then toss the spaghetti squash with that until combined and well-coated with the veggies.
- To finish, I spoon equal amounts of the this mixture into each reserved squash shell, top with some crispy-toasted breadcrumbs and chopped parsley, plus some optional grated parmesan, and serve. (Alternately, this could be served in bowls rather than the reserved, roasted squash shells.)
Tips & Tidbits for my Spaghetti Squash with Sauteed Veggies:
- Choose firm, medium-size spaghetti squash: When choosing spaghetti squash, opt for those that are more of a medium size rather than too large. These are easier to work with and place onto a baking sheet to roast, and the roasted shells make for the perfect vessels to serve the finished dish in.
- Reserve the roasted squash shells for serving: I like to serve the recipe piled into the reserved spaghetti squash shells for a festive look, but you can also scrape all of the flesh out of the shells and discard them, and serve the recipe in bowls or on plates, as you would pasta, instead.
- One spaghetti squash makes for 2 large portions, or 4 smaller portions: While I have this recipe listed as serving two—this makes for 2 larger portions. You could easily serve 4 people a smaller portion by cutting the stuffed spaghetti squash shells in half once filled.
- Add some protein: This recipe is vegetarian, but you could easily add in some lean ground beef, turkey or chicken to saute before adding the veggies, for a bit more texture.
- Vegan spaghetti squash: You could easily make this recipe completely vegan by leaving out the optional grated parmesan cheese.
Hungry for more yummy fall recipes? Check out this Stuffed Acorn Squash, this Roasted Acorn Squash, this Pumpkin Soup, this Butternut Squash Lasagna, or this Butternut Squash Soup!
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