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Learn How to Bake Spaghetti Squash at home with a few of the best tips and tricks. Use it as the healthy, low-carb base of all of your favorite pasta recipes all fall and winter long! 

completed roasted spaghetti squash plated on a white surface

In addition to being one of the best low-carb, low-calorie “pastas” to indulge in during the fall, spaghetti squash also packs several other health benefits that you simply can’t get from wheat-based Italian pasta.

It’s a good source of fiber, vitamin C, vitamin A, antioxidants like beta-carotene and it’s naturally hydrating due to its high water content. So many reasons to look forward to spaghetti squash season!

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Why You’ll Love Baking Spaghetti Squash in the Oven

  • Hands-free cooking method. Once the squash is cut in half and the seeds are removed, the oven does the rest of the work for you. 
  • Retains its texture best. Unlike methods that teach you how to cook a spaghetti squash in the Instant Pot or slow cooker, cooking spaghetti squash in the oven helps preserve the spaghetti-like strands and helps prevent them from becoming overly mushy.
  • Low fat. Baked winter squashes can be roasted in the oven without any added vegan butter or refined oils!
  • Easy to cook in batches. Again, unlike a pressure cooker or slow cooker that has a much more limited capacity, most standard ovens can fit 2-3 winter squashes in at once. Great for meal prep or feeding a large crowd. 
  • Enhanced flavor. Cooking the squash cut-side down enhances the natural sweetness of the squash by caramelizing and roasting the edges. 

What You’ll Need

ingredients for roasted spaghetti squash measured out against a white surface
  • Spaghetti squash: 1 whole spaghetti squash. Spaghetti squash can be found in grocery stores year round but are most commonly in season and at their lowest price during the fall and winter months in the northern hemisphere. 
  • Sharp knife: These winter squash are notoriously hard and difficult to cut. For best results, use a large, very sharp chef’s knife. Some find a serrated knife to be best. 
  • Cutting board: ​A large cutting board or rubber mat is helpful to stabilize the squash. 
  • Oil: Optional, but a bit of cooking oil can help prevent the squash from sticking to the baking sheet and will help the squash roast and become lightly golden brown on the edges. 

How to Bake Spaghetti Squash in the Oven

  • 1) Wash and cut the spaghetti squash in half vertically (long ways). 
  • 2) Remove the spaghetti squash seeds and pulp, then place both halves face-down on a foil-lined baking sheet.
  • 3) Bake for 50-55 minutes, or until soft and easily pierced with a knife. Additionally, the long noodle-like strands should pull away from the sides easily when you scrape them with a fork. 
  • 4) Season with salt and black pepper to taste, then serve immediately while hot, as desired!

No tin foil? Use parchment paper, a silicone baking mat, or a regular baking sheet greased with cooking spray or a little olive oil. 

Recipe FAQs

How do you cut spaghetti squash for cooking? 

Cutting a spaghetti squash in half is arguably the hardest part of the recipe. To make this step easier and safer, use a sharp knife, wash and dry the squash thoroughly and stabilize the squash so it does not roll around while you cut it. This can be done by placing the squash on a rubber mat or by slicing the ends off of the squash and standing the squash up on its flat side. 

​How do you soften spaghetti squash so you can cut it?

If after using the above tips the squash is still too difficult to safely cut, poke the squash a few times with a fork, then place in the microwave on high for about 3 minutes. Allow it to cool, then when easy to handle, attempt to cut the squash again. If it’s still too hard, repeat the process until easy to cut. 

Do you need to take the skin off of spaghetti squash?

No need! Leave the skin on and roast the spaghetti squash cut side down (skin side up). Then when the squash is ready, scrape the long strands away from the sides of the squash until the skin remains. Discard or compost the skin. 

Why is my spaghetti squash mushy and not stringy?

If your spaghetti squash turns out mushy, it was likely overcooked. This can also happen if the squash is on the older side and no longer fresh. 

Top Tips 

  • An adjusted cook time may be required. Depending on the size of your squash and the thickness of the halves, an altered cook time may be required. For example, if you’re baking a large squash, it may take 60+ minutes to cook through. 
  • Space the spaghetti squash halves out if possible. To prevent excess moisture from building inside the squash as they roast, it is best to space them out on the baking sheet so they have a couple of inches between each halve. If you cannot fit two squash halves on one baking sheet, use two baking sheets. 
  • Save the seeds! Similar to roasted pumpkin seeds, spaghetti squash seeds can be roasted and sprinkled on salads, soups, or eaten on their own as a healthy snack
completed roasted spaghetti squash plated on a white surface

How to Serve Spaghetti Squash

This winter squash can be served in a number of ways, but is most popularly used to replace traditional wheat-based spaghetti noodles. Enjoy them as pictured with a splash of your favorite marinara, grape tomatoes, chives, and salt and pepper to taste for simple spaghetti squash boats. Or, try one of these delicious homemade pasta sauces and enjoy as a low carb twist on classic pasta:

​If you’re looking to bulk your spaghetti squash meal up with protein, check out these helpful guides: The Best Plant-Based Protein Sources and a Guide to Plant-Based Meats. 

Storage Instructions

Once cooked, spaghetti squash will keep fresh for about 3-4 days. Allow the squash to cool completely, then transfer to an airtight storage container or tightly cover the squash halve with plastic wrap or reusable wrap. 

Freezing leftover spaghetti squash is possible, but in order to prevent it from becoming mushy it must be cooked, cooled, and sufficiently drained to remove all excess moisture. For full detailed instructions on how to freeze spaghetti squash, check out this helpful article from Taste of Home. 

completed roasted spaghetti squash plated on a white surface

More Kitchen Basics Recipes 

Photos by Alfonso Revilla

How to Bake Spaghetti Squash

5 from 100 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 50 minutes
Total: 55 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Learn How to Bake Spaghetti Squash at home with a few of the best tips and tricks. Use it as the healthy, low-carb base of all of your favorite pasta recipes all fall and winter long! 

Ingredients 

  • 1 spaghetti squash
  • A scoop of marinara
  • Grape tomatoes, halved (optional)
  • Chives, optional
  • Fresh herbs, optional
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Wash and cut your squash in half, vertically. Remove the seeds and place both pieces face-down on a foil-lined baking sheet.
  • Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until soft/tender (you should be able to scrape the sides with a fork easily).
  • Serve hot with marinara sauce scooped on top, tomato halves, fresh herbs, or simply a little salt & pepper to your desired taste.

Notes

  • An adjusted cook time may be required. Depending on the size of your squash and the thickness of the halves, an altered cook time may be required. For example, if you’re baking a large squash, it may take 60+ minutes to cook through. 
  • Space the spaghetti squash halves out if possible. To prevent excess moisture from building inside the squash as they roast, it is best to space them out on the baking sheet so they have a couple of inches between each halve. If you cannot fit two squash halves on one baking sheet, use two baking sheets. 
  • Save the seeds! Similar to roasted pumpkin seeds, spaghetti squash seeds can be roasted and sprinkled on salads, soups, or eaten on their own as a healthy snack

Nutrition

Calories: 185kcalCarbohydrates: 41gProtein: 5gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.3gSodium: 378mgPotassium: 977mgFiber: 10gSugar: 19gVitamin A: 1873IUVitamin C: 31mgCalcium: 133mgIron: 2mg

Disclaimer: Although plantbasedonabudget.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the product type, the brand that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. Plantbasedonabudget.com will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

Additional Info

Author: Margaret Chapman
Course: Lunch
Cuisine: American
Method: Oven
Diet: Vegan
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedOnABudget! 🙂

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    There’s nothing more satisfying than scraping out the spaghetti strands. A totally fun and delicious recipe!

  2. 5 stars
    This roasted spaghetti squash is incredible! Directions were easy to follow, and the flavor was incredible!

  3. 5 stars
    This roasted spaghetti squash recipe is so good! I am trying to cut back on carbs, and this recipe makes it so easy and delicious … thanks for the recipe!