These cheesy spaghetti squash noodles with butter, garlic, and parmesan are amazing.
They are so tasty and quite close to the real thing! Ready in about 40 minutes, they're also very easy to make.
This spaghetti squash recipe comes in handy whenever I crave my favorite pasta dish. It's a really simple one: Spaghetti cooked to al dente, then coated in a sauce of butter, garlic, and parmesan.
I don't touch the stuff anymore. But sometimes I do crave it. And when I do, I go for hearts of palm pasta or make these spaghetti squash noodles instead. They totally hit the spot, every single time.
You'll only need a few simple ingredients to make this tasty side dish. The exact measurements are included in the recipe card below. Here's an overview of what you'll need:
- Spaghetti squash: You can cook it in the microwave, which is the fastest and easiest way. Or you can bake it in the oven if you wish.
- Butter: I use unsalted butter. I love using creamy European butter, but any butter will do.
- Kosher salt and black pepper: If using fine salt, you should reduce the amount you use, or the dish could end up too salty.
- Garlic powder: You can also use minced fresh garlic.
- Grated Parmesan: It's best to use finely grated parmesan and not coarsely shredded.
Making these spaghetti squash noodles is easy! Scroll down to the recipe card for detailed instructions. Here are the basic steps:
- Your first step is to pierce the squash with a fork and cook it in the microwave. Then cut it open, remove the pulp and seeds, and rake a fork back and forth to remove its flesh in strands. As an alternative to using the microwave, you can bake the spaghetti squash.
- Heat the butter in a skillet, then add the squash strands and the seasonings. Cook, stirring, for 1-2 minutes.
- Turn the heat off, stir in the parmesan, and serve.
You definitely don't want to overcook the squash. While the noodles won't be al-dente like wheat ones, you don't want them overly mushy.
So check on the squash while you cook it (whether using the microwave or the oven) to ensure it doesn't get overcooked. And when you saute the noodles with butter and seasonings, do so very briefly.
Frequently asked questions
I wish! Alas, it's not exactly the same as eating starchy pasta. But these noodles, buttery, cheesy, and garlicky, are truly good, and they ARE quite close to the experience of eating real pasta.
The secret is to avoid overcooking it. So keep a close eye on it! It does tend to get mushier if cooked in the microwave, so you could start with 4 minutes per side, then check to see if you need to add more microwave time.
Yes. You can clean them and roast them using this recipe for roasted pumpkin seeds.
I love this recipe as is and almost always make it as written. But in case you'd like to vary the basic recipe, here are a few ideas for you:
- Use olive oil instead of butter.
- Use minced fresh garlic. Cook it in butter or olive oil until golden, then add the remaining ingredients.
- You can garnish the finished dish with chopped parsley. When out of fresh parsley, I sometimes use dried parsley and red pepper flakes, as you can see in the photos.
This dish is quite versatile. You can serve it with anything, really. I usually serve it as a side dish to any of the following main dishes:
Another option is to turn these noodles into a full meal by mixing shredded leftover chicken into them when you saute them in butter.
You can keep the leftovers in the fridge, in an airtight container, for 3-4 days. Reheat them gently, in the microwave on 50% power. This is one of those dishes where the leftovers actually taste great!
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Spaghetti Squash Noodles
- 1 medium spaghetti squash (3 lb.)
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ cup finely grated Parmesan (not shredded)
- Pierce the spaghetti squash all over with a fork. Place it on a microwave-safe plate. Microwave until fork-tender, 10-15 minutes, turning halfway through cooking.
- Transfer the cooked squash to a cutting board. Careful - the plate and the squash will be hot. Allow it to rest until cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes.
- Using a sharp knife, carefully cut the squash lengthwise. Use a spoon to remove the seeds and pulp.
- Rake a fork back and forth over the squash halves to remove its flesh in strands. Place the strands in a bowl and set them aside. You should have about 4 cups of strands.
- Heat the butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. When the butter melts and starts to foam, add the spaghetti squash strands, kosher salt, black pepper, and garlic powder. Cook, stirring, until the "noodles" are well-coated, 1-2 minutes.
- Turn the heat off and stir in the Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.
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