The first time I ever had spaghetti squash I was less than thrilled. I was told “it tastes just like spaghetti.” Nope, it definitely does not. It basically tastes like crunchy water. The shape is spaghetti-like, but the texture and flavor are quite different. If you make spaghetti squash with regular marinara, you’re probably in for a disappointment. If you make this spaghetti squash, you’re in for a real treat! The squash absorbs all the wonderful flavors of the leeks and transforms into a delicious main dish or side.
Why spaghetti squash? Because it’s fun, it’s in season, and it is super low carb. Not that I follow a low carb diet, (like ever) I just like to experiment and try different things. If you are following a low carb diet or doing the paleo thing, give this recipe a try! Just for a little number comparison, a one cup serving of regular spaghetti has 43 grams of carbohydrate, while a one cup serving of spaghetti squash only has 7 grams of carbohydrate. The other veggies in the dish contribute minimal carbs, with the exception of the garbanzo beans. If you are serving this as a side dish, you could go bean-less. For a main dish I like to keep them as a good source of vegetarian protein and iron.
The roasted garlic is one of my favorite parts of this dish. It cooks right along side the spaghetti squash so there is no extra work or pans to dirty. Just pop it in some tinfoil and roast for forty minutes with the squash. When it’s done its soft and fragrant, but not quite as pungent as raw or sauteed garlic. If you need more detailed instructions on the roasting process see here.
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 2 heads garlic, roasted whole
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- black pepper
- 1 leek, chopped
- 2 green onions, chopped
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 can garbanzo beans
- 3 big handfuls fresh spinach
- ¼ cup slivered almonds
- 1 tbsp butter or vegan butter
- red pepper flakes
- parmesan cheese to top (optional)
- Cut spaghetti squash in half with very sharp knife. Remove seeds and wet fleshy part.
- Place halves face down on baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes. Squash should be tender and easily pierced with a fork when done.
- Cut off tops of whole garlic head. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and black pepper. Wrap in tin foil and roast with squash.
- Saute leeks in olive oil. Cook for 2 minutes until browning slightly. Add garbanzo beans, green onions, and salt.
- Add spinach and roasted garlic. Chop one head of garlic, leave the other garlic cloves whole. Add both garlics to the pan.
- Add slivered almonds.
- Scrape spaghetti squash into a bowl. Mix with 1 tbsp butter.
- Add spaghetti squash to saute pan and mix.
- Add a pinch of red pepper flakes.
- Top with parmesan cheese if desired.