Early fall is the best time to enjoy spaghetti squash, which is versatile and lends itself well to a host of recipes. This article was originally published on The House of Snuggles.
So what do you do when you come home in the mood for pasta and all you have is spaghetti squash? Make awesome pasta! The cooked insides of the spaghetti squash look like noodles, though far less starchy and packed fiber and vitamin C. This is a great option for people who are looking for some type of carb substitute. Of course, I’m not advocating a pasta free life, that’s food heresy. All I’m saying is, sometimes it is good to spice things up a bit. So here’s the lowdown on spaghetti squash.
-It tends to have yellow skin and is oblong in shape. Ranging from about 3 to 5 pounds.
-The flesh can vary but is usually a pale yellow.
-It can be baked, steamed, boiled, or microwaved. (I prefer baking 375-400 degrees F for about 35-45 minutes or until easily pierced with a fork).
-The seeds can be roasted like pumpkin seeds and eaten as a tasty snack.
-They grow easily in gardens or containers and can be cross pollinated with zucchini. (So that patio garden you’ve always dreamed of, try throwing a couple of seeds in a container and see what happens).
-Oh yeah, the nutrition: Vitamin A, B6, C, E, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, potassium and zinc an 1 cup equals about 42 calories. Bottom line: there’s a butt load so check it out.
-Interesting side note: Squash is actually a fruit not a vegetable. Weird, huh?
Since I received this beautiful spaghetti squash in my Chow Box, I decided to whip up some homemade Marinara sauce to make a simple, satisfying dinner. I wanted to use fresh tomatoes because I feel you get better flavor from them but unfortunately all I had at my disposal was a 14.05oz can of diced tomatoes and a 5oz can of tomato paste.
Marinara is one of those things that is so easy to adapt and tailor to your taste that it’s kind of hard to mess up. So today I began by sauteing an onion on medium high heat; when it was translucent, I threw everything else into my pot and let the ingredients have a party while I relaxed for 15-20 minutes. In the end, I threw in fresh Italian basil just for some added oomph and sprinkled some red pepper flakes for some sass. I topped this dish with vegan almond mozzarella and vegan Parmesan and proceeded to stuff my face with nutritious deliciousness. Enjoy!
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Photo: Krystle Troia-Alvarado