Do you love pasta, but don’t want the carbs? Well pasta lovers rejoice, VeganSmart crew member, Naja Hill, has the answer for you! Try her simple 9 ingredient spaghetti squash recipe to meet your pasta and plant-based needs!
1 large or 2 small spaghetti squash
1/4 cup of raw cashews
1/4 cup of toasted pine nuts (or raw walnuts)
2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast
1/4 teaspoon of sea salt, plus more to taste
2 cups of fresh basil, packed
3 cloves garlic, minced (1 1/2 tablespoons)
3 tablespoons of sun-dried tomatoes, chopped and drained if in oil
1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
Toasted pine nuts
Vegan parmesan cheese
Red pepper flakes
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and line a large baking sheet with foil.
- Carefully, halve spaghetti squash lengthwise using a sharp knife. Naja finds that the best way to do this is to pierce the skin with the very tip of the knife and push it all the way through to the other side. Rock the knife back and forth to cut one half all the way through, then repeat on the other side. Use an ice cream scoop (or sharp spoon) to scrape out the seeds and most of the stringy parts.
- Brush the interior with oil and sprinkle with a little salt. Place cut-side down on baking sheet. Roast for 45 minutes, or until a knife easily pierces the skin and flesh. Remove from oven and set aside.
- In the meantime, add cashews, pine nuts, nutritional yeast, and sea salt to a blender or food processor and pulse until a fine meal.
- Add basil, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, and olive oil and puree into a fine paste. If it has trouble mixing, add a bit more oil or hot water (2-3 tablespoons) to help encourage it along. It doesn’t need to be finely pureed, just well-mixed. A bit of texture is a good thing in this dish. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
- Use a fork to scoop out spaghetti squash into fine strings and divide between serving plates. Top with desired amount of pesto and lightly toss.
- Serve with additional toppings as desired (listed above). Naja prefers red pepper flakes and vegan parmesan cheese.
- Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator for 2-3 days, though best when fresh. Pasta can be enjoyed hot, chilled, or at room temperature.