This easy tutorial will show you how to make roasted spaghetti squash! Serve this winter squash as a delicious side dish, or use it as a low-carb pasta alternative.
Do you already love spaghetti squash?
Or are you still trying to find a way to love spaghetti squash?
Honestly, I didn’t immediately love this winter squash. And I think it’s because I was trying to make it a spaghetti replacement.
And guys, spaghetti squash LOOKS like spaghetti (sort of). BUT, when I treated it like spaghetti (serving it with a simple marinara sauce), I was SO HUNGRY an hour later.
So ridiculously hungry and unsatisfied.
But then, something changed. And now I adore spaghetti squash.
What did I do differently?
First of all, I get as much water out of the squash as possible while cooking, to ensure the long, noodle-like strands aren’t mushy.
Second, I always (really, always), serve spaghetti squash with something more filling than marinara sauce. I love serving it with this lentil bolognese.
How to Cook Spaghetti Squash
When you want to cook spaghetti squash, you’ve got a few options.
Cooking option 1: Microwave it.
To microwave a spaghetti squash, cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, and place it cut-side down in a casserole dish along with about ½-inch of water. Cook for 10-15 minutes until tender.
This is, no doubt, the fastest way to cook a spaghetti squash, but I do not love this method. The squash will steam in the microwave and (in my opinion) will be a little soggy.
Cooking option 2: Instant Pot.
If you have an Instant Pot, this is an awesome option. Find the full directions for Instant Pot spaghetti squash here.
Cooking option 3: Oven-roast it.
And finally, the option we’ll talk about here. Roasting spaghetti squash is an easy way to get a delicious squash with caramelized flavors.
This is the slowest option, but it’s also very hands-off, so you can prepare the rest of your dinner while the squash roasts.
How to Cut a Spaghetti Squash
There are two main ways to cut a spaghetti squash in half.
Option one: Cut it lengthwise.
I typically cut my spaghetti squash lengthwise. Why?
Partly because that’s what I’m used to doing, but also because I think you get a more even roast. I also think that the seeds are easiest to scoop out when the squash is cut lengthwise (compared to cutting the squash across the middle).
Option 2: Cut Across the Middle
When you cut the squash across the narrow middle, the spaghetti squash strands can be removed in longer strands. When cut this way, the squash more closely mimics spaghetti noodles.
Cut your squash whichever way you prefer.
Once you’ve cut the squash in half, use a sharp spoon or an ice cream scoop to scoop out the seeds and membrane.
How to Make Roasted Spaghetti Squash
Once you’ve cut the squash and scooped out the seeds, place the squash on a baking sheet and drizzle it with oil.
Next, sprinkle it with salt.
Place the squash cut-side down on the baking sheet, and slide it into the oven.
Roast the squash for about forty minutes, or until the skin begins to brown and pull away from the squash.
Use a spatula to flip the roasted spaghetti squash over.
The bottom should have swoon-worthy caramelized golden bits.
Let the squash cool slightly, and then use a fork to scoop out the spaghetti squash strands.
Serve the roasted spaghetti squash right away. It’s perfect as a side dish or a pasta replacement (along with a hearty sauce!).
Looking for more sauce ideas? Try serving this with this turkey meatball and marinara sauce from Killing Thyme.
Roasted Spaghetti Squash
- 1 spaghetti squash (~3 lbs)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Use a large chef's knife to cut the squash in half (lengthwise or across the narrow middle, whichever you prefer). If the squash is hard to cut through, insert the tip of the knife, and then slowly rock the knife back and forth until the squash splits in half. Tip: Cutting in half across the narrow part of the squash will yield longer, more spaghetti-like strands than cutting lengthwise. However, I find the seeds are more difficult to scoop out when cutting vertically.
- Use a sharp spoon or an ice cream scoop to scoop out the squash seeds. Discard the seeds (or save for another use).
- Place the squash halves face-up on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
- Turn the squash face-down on the baking sheet, and roast about 40 minutes. The spaghetti squash is done roasting when the skin looks dry, papery, and is starting to brown. If desired, test for doneness by pricking the squash with a paring knife. If it glides in with no resistance, the squash is finished cooking.
- Use a large spatula to flip the squash flesh-side up, and let cool for about 5 minutes.Scrape the inside of the squash with a fork to loosen the spaghetti strands.
- Top spaghetti squash with pasta sauce, or serve as a side dish. Serve hot.