Spaghetti squash is getting to be known as a great substitute for pasta for tasty Italian-based recipes that are both meatless and low in carbohydrates -- a five-star healthy rating.
In this recipe, spaghetti squash is steamed with basil, tomatoes and Parmesan cheese for a deep Italian vibe. It's easy and satisfying -- perfect for a weeknight dinner.
Serve with extra shredded Parmesan cheese and Italian bread with seasoned olive oil for dipping, along with a dry red wine like zinfandel, cabernet sauvignon, shiraz or merlot -- or a blend featuring any of these varieties. You might be feeling so proud of yourself for serving up this super healthy dinner that you think a reward of dessert is in order for all. But to stay with your healthy food theme, think about something fruit-based, like old-fashioned baked apples; apple tart; peach, apple or blueberry cobbler; or raspberry, orange, lemon or pineapple sherbet. Oatmeal cookies are packed with whole grains, raisins, and nuts, another great choice.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 medium tomatoes, cored, seeds removed and diced
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped basil
- 1 small clove garlic, crushed and finely minced
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- Line a baking pan with foil and oil lightly with olive oil. Heat the oven to 375 F.
- Cut the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds and any soft fibers.
- Arrange the squash, cut side down, on the foil-lined pan.
- Cover the pan tightly with foil and bake for 1 hour.
- After an hour, turn the squash over, cover once again with foil and bake for about 20 minutes longer, or until very tender.
- Scoop the squash out of its peel and toss in a large bowl with the butter, diced tomato, basil, garlic, Parmesan cheese, pepper, and salt.
Spaghetti Squash vs. Spaghetti: Nutrition Facts
Here's why this vegetable is getting so much good press: 1 cup of spaghetti squash has 31 calories; the same amount of spaghetti has 221 calories. At .6 grams per cup, spaghetti squash has virtually no fat. Spaghetti also has very little fat, 1.3 grams per cup, but it is nevertheless twice the amount of the squash. A cup of spaghetti squash contains 7 grams of carbohydrates, and 1.5 grams is fiber. A cup of spaghetti has a whopping 43 grams of carbs, with 2.5 grams of fiber.