How to Cook Spaghetti Squash

Great news! Spaghetti squash is not only delicious and nutritious, but also oh-so easy to cook! Here you'll find how to make spaghetti squash in just a few simple steps.

Wondering how to cook spaghetti squash? You can microwave spaghetti squash or bake spaghetti squash using our how-to tips.

Get to Know Spaghetti Squash

Before you learn how to make spaghetti squash, find out a little more about this great ingredient:

What Is Spaghetti Squash?: Shaped like a small watermelon and light yellow in color, spaghetti squash is a winter squash that gets its name from its inner flesh, which, once cooked, can be separated into yellow-gold threads that truly resemble spaghetti noodles.

Buying Spaghetti Squash: You can generally find spaghetti squash year-round, though its peak season runs from October through January. When buying spaghetti squash, look for firm squash that are heavy for their size. Avoid those with soft spots or a green tint -- the latter is a sign of under-ripeness.

How to Store Spaghetti Squash: Store whole spaghetti squash in a cool, dry place for up to 2 months.

Calories in Spaghetti Squash: There are 42 calories per cup of baked spaghetti squash. No wonder some people enjoy serving it as a low-calorie alternative to regular spaghetti, which has 196 calories per cup!

Spaghetti Squash Nutrition: In addition to being low in calories, spaghetti squash is also lower in carbohydrates than regular spaghetti (spaghetti squash has 10 grams carbohydrates per cup while regular spaghetti has 38 g per cup). It's also good to know that spaghetti squash offers vitamin C, vitamin A, dietary fiber, and potassium.

How to Bake Spaghetti Squash

The most common way of cooking spaghetti squash is to bake or roast it. Here's how (based on a 3-pound squash):

• Rinse the squash with cool, clear tap water and scrub with a clean produce brush. Pat dry.

• Cut the squash in half lengthwise, and use a spoon to remove the seeds.

• Place, cut sides down, in a baking dish. Bake in a 350°F oven for 45 to 50 minutes or until the squash is tender.

• Remove the pulp and serve as directed below.

Note that a 3-pound spaghetti squash will yield about 8 servings. If that's too many servings, you can refrigerate uncooked squash, wrapped in plastic, for up to 4 days.

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash in the Microwave

Short on time? You can also microwave spaghetti squash.

Here's our spaghetti squash microwave recipe. Note that this is based on half of a 3-pound squash (a 1½-pound piece), which will make four servings. You can refrigerate the other half of the uncooked squash, wrapped in plastic, for up to 4 days.

• Wash, halve, and remove the seeds.

• Place a squash half, cut side down, in a microwave-safe baking dish with 1/4 cup water. Microwave, covered, on 100% power (high) for about 15 minutes or until tender.

• Remove the pulp and serve as directed below.

Check out this recipe for Microwave Spaghetti Squash with Arugula Pesto.

How to Serve Spaghetti Squash

With just a nudge of the fork, that golden-yellow cooked flesh separates into spaghetti-like strands. Here's how to make that happen:

• Holding the squash with a potholder in one hand, use a fork to loosen the fibers. Then, use a large, sturdy spoon to scrape strands from the squash.

• Serve spaghetti squash in place of pasta. Toss with butter and/or shredded cheese (Parmesan is classic), or serve with your favorite pasta sauce. Also see some of our recipes below.

Our Best Spaghetti Squash Recipes

Looking for more? Here's how to prepare spaghetti squash in a variety of delicious ways.

Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Meatballs (pictured)

Baked Spaghetti Squash with Italian Sausage

Baked Spaghetti Squash with Chili

Buttered Spaghetti Squash

Jeweled Microwave Spaghetti Squash



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