The first time I ate spaghetti squash was in a vegetarian lasagna years back. The squash replaced the noodle portion. I barely noticed a difference and it was delicious. I have never had it since but I do know that the name suggests it might be a replacement for spaghetti because of its shape. I also own a spiralizer which makes noodle shapes out of zucchini, carrots and other firm vegetables. I love the idea of replacing noodles with vegetables and have made plenty of “pasta” dishes with them but I thought it might be time to give spaghetti squash a try.
This isn’t a fancy recipe but it is going into my archives under my Get Fit foods because it is the right kind of food for meeting my fitness goals.
Preparing it is easy. Simply wash the squash and cut it in 1/2. I cut it so I have 2 short halves vs. the longer boat shape. There is a reason for this. Cutting it shorter actually makes longer strands which are more noodle-like. If you prefer shorter strands, cut it in a boat shape. This happens because of the way the squash forms.
Once the insides (seeds and guts) are scooped out, simply place them face down in a dish and bake at 375º for about 45 minutes. It will be al dente because that is my preference. It gives added bite to the vegetable and keeps some of the nutrients. You can choose to season it but I prefer not to so that I can use it for various recipes.
From there, use a fork and scoop out the ‘spaghetti’ but let it cool first so you can handle it. You don’t even need to use it right away. You can cook it up later as long as you keep it in an air-tight container. Freezing is possible but I wouldn’t recommend it. It won’t keep the nice consistency of a pasta if you do.
I am always trying to incorporate vegetables. There are those that I love like potatoes, peas and carrots but I know as part of training, there are better options. One of the foods I have been trying to eat more of is spinach and what goes well with spinach? Artichokes of course! And what do spinach and artichokes go well in? Dip! Ok. . . .I am getting carried away but why not a spinach, artichoke and spaghetti squash dish. Throw chicken on there and you have a good, healthy training meal.
I did cheat a bit. I used a pre-made artichoke dip that I like from Costco. It’s just easier but there is nothing stopping you from making your own dip. I have a knock-out artichoke dip recipe I will post one day. It is pricy because I use expensive cheeses. Perhaps that’ll be a dip you keep for yourself 😉
Once the squash is done and set aside. Add 2 Tbsp of artichoke dip to a pan along with 1 C of spinach (or more if you like really like spinach). Once the spinach has wilted, add the spaghetti squash and stir. You will likely need to season with a bit of salt. Spaghetti squash is a bit sweet. That is all there is to it. The pre-made dip has all the flavourings: artichoke, olive oil, parmesan cheese, herbs. Your job is simply to add the nutrients of the vegetables.
Spinach-Artichoke Spaghetti Squash
1 roasted spaghetti squash
2-3 Tbsp artichoke dip
1 C spinach
1. Wash the squash and cut in half.
2. Place the squash facedown on a tray.
3. Bake at 375º for 45 minutes.
4. Remove from the tray and let cool.
5. When you can handle it, use a fork to scoop out the squash.
6. Add 2 Tbsps of artichoke dip to a pan.
7. When the dip begins to soften, 1 C of baby spinach.
8. When the spinach begins to wilt, add 1/2 the squash.
9. Stir ingredients, season with salt, and serve.
Protein 4.5 g