Spaghetti Squash 101

Dani Spies shares the basics of spaghetti squash, an oblong yellow squash that can be found in the store year round. It is very filling, as well as filled with nutrients (potassium, vitamin A, beta carotene, and folic acid) and low in calories. 1 cup is only 40 calories and it can be baked, steamed, or boiled.

Here are her tips for selecting a squash:

  • Look for one that is hard on the outside and pretty heavy for its size. Make sure there no orange or green spots.
  • Store in a cool, dark place and it should be good for 3-4 weeks. Or if you are cooking it in a day or so, leave it on the kitchen counter.

How to microwave it

If you are short on time, the microwave is your best bet.

  • Take a knife and poke 8-10 holes on the outside of the squash. These allow the steam to escape while it cooks. You don’t want it to explode in the microwave!
  • Put it in a microwave safe dish. Microwave on high for 4-5 minutes per pound. For example for a 2 ½ pound squash, microwave for 12 minutes. Rotate the squash half way through the cycle (or set the timer for 6 minutes and rotate half way through).
  • Use potholders to remove from the microwave. The outside should be soft. If it is not soft enough, put it back in the microwave for a few more minutes.
  • Let it cool for 5 minutes before cutting. It’s hot!
  • Slice off the top, and then slice the squash lengthwise. Remove all the seeds in the center.
  • Using a fork, pull the squash away from the skin. It looks like spaghetti!

It is light and sweet, with a slight crunch.

Drizzle with olive oil, some garlic powder, or Parmesan cheese.

Or top it with spaghetti sauce. Or use as a base underneath any veggie dish.

It is a very versatile veggie that is so easy to make.

Averse to cooking it in the microwave?  Bake it.

Slice the squash in half lengthwise, scrap out the seeds, place it flesh side down in a large baking dish filled with water and cook it at about 375 for 45 minutes to an hour.

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