Help! What does a die-hard pasta lover bring to a Whole30 potluck?
That’s my cooking challenge this weekend, friends. As some of you know, I love to take classes at Barry’s Bootcamp and have made some new friends through the grueling 7am workouts. This weekend, we’re having a potluck to celebrate the end of January’s Whole30 challenge, which consisted of 30 straight days of following the paleo-esque Whole30 program. To be clear, I didn’t participate in the challenge (have you seen what I cook on this blog?!), but I’m still planning to help my Barry’s #fitfam celebrate!
For the potluck, I’m whipping up a Whole30-approved dish. Some of the people who completed the challenge are bringing in food they’ve been craving over the last 30 days – pizza, candy, diet coke, you name it. But since I didn’t participate, I decided to cook a dish within the Whole30 rules. Completely unaware of what that meant (or didn’t mean), I jumped over to Google and quickly discovered that I’m not allowed to cook anything with dairy, sugar, or grains. Argh. That basically rules out my go-to potluck recipes. But then I remembered one of my favorite “pasta cheats” that I discovered a few years ago…spaghetti squash!
Below is a really easy recipe to roast spaghetti squash in the oven. It’s dead simple. Make some cuts all over the squash then bake for one hour. Once it’s done, cut the squash in half lengthwise, spoon out the seeds, then scrape the spaghetti-like strands into a bowl. Some recipes have you cut the squash in half before roasting it, but I like to do that after it’s cooked. I find this technique easier and safer; trying to slice through the tough uncooked squash is a kitchen nightmare waiting to happen.
While I’ll never say it’s a perfect substitute for the real deal, spaghetti squash is a really healthy alternative to pasta that is incredibly simple to make. After it’s roasted, sauté the squash in a skillet with butter or olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Then, you can use it as a base for any pasta sauce, or even just some grated cheese and chopped herbs. (Hint hint, try it out with this Cacio e Pepe recipe.)
The squash strands cling nicely to the sauce and the flavor is mild enough to pair with just about anything. I’m planning to serve the roasted spaghetti squash with a spicy marinara sauce, and possibly meatballs or sautéed shrimp.
Have you made spaghetti squash before? What did you serve it with? Share your comments, questions, and more below!
- 1 medium spaghetti squash, 2-3 pounds
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Use a small paring knife to poke the squash all over the outside.
- Place the squash on a rimmed baking sheet.
- Bake for 30 minutes, then turn over on the other side.
- Continue baking for another 30 minutes.
- Cut the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds using a large spoon.
- Use a fork to gently scrape the squash; it should separate into long strands.
- Use immediately, or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to a week.