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A quick and simple spaghetti squash pesto recipe that will impress your friends and family. This recipe is so easy to make, but looks fancy and tastes delicious. Pair it with a protein to make a perfect combo of healthy fats and heavenly veggies!
You simply can’t go wrong with this pesto-inspired recipe. Spaghetti squash is so easy to work with, especially once you’ve figured out how to microwave it instead of baking for 30 minutes. Seriously guys, this was news to me and it was life-changing!
How to make Spaghetti Squash Pesto
Please don’t be deterred if you don’t have all the ingredients I list below. There is no right or wrong way to make a pesto sauce (although there’s probably a few Italians out there that would argue).
For this recipe I used:
- Artichokes (this is key)
- A shallot (you can use a small onion instead)
- 2 cloves of garlic (use 2 tsps of garlic powder or minced garlic if you want)
- Tahini (use peanut, almond or sunflower seed butter instead)
- Lemon juice
- Nutritional yeast (or use grated parmesan instead. You can also opt out of this ingredient if you want)
- Basil and/or parsley
- Olive oil
- A little bit of soup stock (use can use water instead)
- And a big o’l spaghetti squash!
Equipment needed to make the pesto sauce
Ideally you’ll need a food processor for this recipe (this one is by far my favorite), although I suspect you could get away with using a good blender. A sharp knife to cut the spaghetti squash is helpful, too.
As you can see, the only non-negotiables for this recipe is artichokes and spaghetti squash. I love this combo of veggies because they’re packed with fiber and water, so you’ll stay satisfied longer while enjoying a very hearty meal with a great flavor.
Why I’m obsessed with Spaghetti Squash
Of all the squashes out there, from butternut to pumpkin, spaghetti squash is my absolute favorite because it’s versatile, lower in carbs and packed with B vitamins, magnesium, fiber and omega-3 fatty acids (the good fat that fights inflammation). It will also sit on your counter for weeks, patiently waiting to get cooked into something delicious.
Healthier Pesto Sauce
I love a good pesto just like anyone else, but let’s face it – if you’re trying to eat lighter, it can be a really calorie-dense food to add to your meal. I lighten this pesto up by adding artichokes which increase the volume and fiber without adding a ton of calories! I also cut down on the fat content without sacrificing flavor by adding a tablespoon of tahini instead of a lot of pine nuts. It’s much cheaper, too. Finally, I made this sauce accessible to plant-based eaters and those of us that don’t tolerate dairy well by swapping parmesan cheese for nutritional yeast. But feel free to stick with real cheese if you prefer. Cook’s choice!
Want more Spaghetti Squash Recipes? Try these next:
- Greek Spaghetti Squash Casserole – Low carb & weight-loss friendly
- Spaghetti squash Pizza Casserole – Low carb & great to make ahead
Nutrition per serving: 162 cals, 5.8g fat, 23g carbs, 6.4g fiber, 6.5 protein
- 1 cans of artichokes
- 1 shallot
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 T tahini, use cashews, peanut butter or walnuts if you don’t have a clue what this is
- 1 T lemon juice
- 2 T nutritional yeast, optional if you absolutely must
- ½ c basil (Or 1 cup of basil only)
- ½ c parsley (Or 1 cup of parsley only)
- 1 big ass spaghetti squash.
- 1 T olive oil
- 4 or 5 T of veggie soup stock
- salt and pepper
- Cut your spaghetti squash in half, length-wise, clean out the seeds and put it face down in a microwave-safe dish. Microwave on high for 7 to 10 minutes depending on the size of the squash. It's done when the strands separate easily with a fork.
- Meanwhile, pour the olive oil in a pan over medium heat and add the shallot (or onion) and garlic in there. Give it a stir and let it cook for about 3 minutes until the onions are translucent. Then add the artichokes. Stir and let cook for another 3 minutes - until they start to brown slightly.
- Let cool, then add to a food processor along with the nut butter, basil and parsley (or cilantro), nutritional yeast (or cheese) and lemon juice. Turn processor on and blend well.
- Add soup stock (or water) until you have the texture you want. It shouldn't be too runny, but you want it to be thick.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Now that the squash is roasted and cool enough to handle, scoop out the spaghetti-like guts and portion into serving dishes. Add a generous dollop of pesto to the squash and garnish with a little something fancy.
To Microwave spaghetti squash, simply cut the squash in half, length-wise. Then clean out the inside and put flat side down on a microwave dish. Cook for 5 to 7 mins per half (assuming you can't cook both at once) depending on the size.
When you take it out of the oven, let cool a bit, then seperate with a fork.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 4 people
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 162
Caren is a certified yoga teacher, fitness instructor and author of The Fit Habit. Here she shares simple, low carb recipes, quick home workout ideas and practical ways to foster mind + body wellness.