Microwaving spaghetti squash is the fastest and easiest way of preparing this vegetable. I almost never bother with baking it!
It’s easy enough to bake spaghetti squash in the oven. It’s ridiculously easy to cook it in the microwave!
This method is so easy, and the results are quite comparable to baking. So more often than not, when cooking this healthy vegetable, I choose the microwave. And I cook it often, mostly to replace pasta and other starchy foods.
How to cook spaghetti squash in the microwave
It’s so easy! Here are the steps (detailed instructions can be found in the recipe card below):
- Pierce the squash with a fork. You can leave it whole, there’s no need to cut it first. As long as you pierce it with a fork before cooking, it shouldn’t explode in the microwave.
- Microwave it for 5-6 minutes on each side, and it’s ready!
This cooking time is ideal for a small, 2 lb. squash. If yours is larger, you’ll probably need to microwave it a bit longer.
Your goal is a soft squash that can be easily pierced with a fork. Try 6 minutes per side for larger squashes.
Troubleshooting this recipe
Microwave cooking is a bit of a gamble because microwave ovens greatly vary. Here are my tips for handling unexpected results:
If you decide that your squash is ready, but upon slicing it you realize it’s still too hard, simply scoop out the pulp and seeds.
Place each half in a large, microwave-safe bowl. Add a little water, cover, and microwave until fork-tender. This will probably take 2-3 more minutes for each half.
What to do if you microwaved the spaghetti squash for too long and it’s mushy?
Simply place the halves, cut side down, on a clean towel for a few minutes. This will help absorb some of the liquid. Take comfort in the fact that it will still taste great!
Is it better to bake spaghetti squash or to microwave it?
In general, microwave-cooked strands do tend to be a bit mushier than baked ones. It’s up to you if the slight mushiness is worth the easier preparation. I think it is.
Isn’t microwaving unhealthy?
What to do with cooked microwave spaghetti squash?
Lots of things! It can be as simple as adding some melted butter (or good olive oil), salt and garlic powder.
Or you can use it as the basis for many tasty recipes, including this wonderful spaghetti squash casserole.
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Microwave Spaghetti Squash
- 1 small spaghetti squash (2 lb.)
- Pierce the spaghetti squash in a few spots with a sharp knife.
- Microwave 5 minutes; turn to the other side and microwave 5 more minutes, until soft to the touch. For a larger squash, try 6 minutes per side. Let stand for 5 minutes to finish cooking.
- Using a sharp knife, cut the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Allow to cool 2-3 minutes, just until easier to handle. Scoop out the pulp and seeds from the center, then rake a fork back and forth to remove strands of the flesh onto a serving bowl.
- Toss with butter, salt and pepper or with your favorite sauce and serve.