Craving some saucey pasta, but don’t have the caloric budget for a full blown pasta dish? Then please welcome this glorious spaghetti squash into your life. Takes little to no effort to cook (your oven does the cooking), and is very versatile in your everyday meals. You can bake it, steam it, boil it, karate chop, and kung-fu it any way you like — just cook it.
Usually there are stickers on squashes to tell you how to prepare them, but this one did not. Chef Google told me to slice it in half vertically, clean out the seeds, and bake it face down in the oven for 30 to 40 minutes at an oven of 375 degrees. I followed the directions, but since my squash was pretty large, it needed an extra 10 minutes or so. It came out beautifully. Once the squash is fully cooked, use a fork and start scraping it. Golden strands will fall out and there you have it — spaghetti squash noodles. Collect it in a bowl and use it anyway you like. They store and reheat very well.
A popular way to use it is of course in place of pasta noodles. Half a cup of pasta sauce (50 calories), one cup of spaghetti squash (42 calories) and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese (10 calories) and you have your 100 calories snack here. Make it more filling by adding some form of protein in it. Other ideas to incorporate spaghetti squash are: baked casseroles, mix with some veggies and make it into a wrap, toss some in soups and on top of salads, be the “mac” in your mac and cheese, the sky is the limit with such a versatile squash. Last night, I microwave a cup and added a spoonful of salsa and it was just as delicious.
If there was a marketing label, it would look like this:
Low Carb, Low-fat, Low-calories, Cholesterol-Free, Low-Sodium
Good source of fiber, Vitamin A, Calcium, and Potassium
Only 42 calories per serving
The squash itself is not a very sweet type and does not have a strong distinctive taste of it’s own so it is perfect as a base to any of your dishes. Takes up the personality of your dish really well. Over-cooked, they can be a little soft, but when done perfectly, it has a little crunch to it.
A one cup serving (5.5 ounce) is only 42 calories, 0 WW, 0.5 grams of fat, no cholesterol, 28 milligram of sodium, 10.1 grams of carbohydrates, 2.2 grams of dietary fiber, 3.9 grams of sugar, 1 gram of protein, 32.6 milligram of calcium and 181.4 milligram of potassium.
I’ve been rocking some major spaghetti squash meals lately because I found them very inexpensive at my Fresh & Easy. Butternut squashes, spaghetti squashes, and acorn squashes (any size) were all up for grabs for only $1.98. Naturally, I picked the biggest and heaviest one which clocked in at a nice 5.4 lbs. A steal for under $2.00.
Retails: $1.98 each @ Fresh & Easy
My Cost: $1.98
Calories: about 42 per cooked cup (154g)