Once upon a time the world was in some kind of crazy phase where all things low-carb, gluten free, and paleo were trending like crazy… oh wait, that’s now! Everyone and their mother seems to be following these “carb-free” styles of eating nowadays. Crazy, right? Carbs are our body’s first source of energy, and they can fuel our bodies with nutrients, control our blood sugar levels, and aid in digestion. So, why are people cutting them out? It’s because there are “good carbs” and “bad carbs.” The good carbs are delicious body-fueling foods like whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and grains! Then there are the refined and processed carbs which include white bread, white pasta, pastries, and more – these are what everyone’s running away from!
With so many “fake carb” recipes invading the web, I’ve seen some crazy ideas! I’m talking everything from cucumber sandwiches to cauliflower grilled cheese! The other day, my Dad stumbled across a spaghetti squash recipe on Facebook. You know those kind of posts where all you see is a person’s hands magically turning absolutely nothing into pure deliciousness in just about twenty seconds? It was one of those. Immediately, my mind was racing with ideas for an even healthier version of what I’d just seen!
Ahhh the long-debated spaghetti squash. You either love it, or you hate it. Unless you try out this recipe, because there’s no way anyone on Earth could ever hate such a perfect blend of ingredients! Everyone seems to hold their grudges against these fiber infused noodles. First they’re too cold, then they’re too slimy, then they take up way too much time and need too much attention. Just like children. However, when prepared correctly, spaghetti squash will transform your whole view on veggie alternatives! When these were roasting in the oven, they filled my house with such a cozy, warm, and toasty smell. Immediately I remembered why so many people stood up for these strange, oblong shaped pumpkins.
This recipe just had to have pesto in it! I mean it’s pasta for crying out loud! I know, I know, pasta’s typically made with marinara, but hear me out. While marinara sauce might be fine on regular spaghetti, it’s too heavy and overpowering on spaghetti squash. The last thing I needed was my beautiful “picture-perfect” spaghetti squash drowning in an abyss of sauce. But hey, if that’s your thing – go for it!
Typically, pesto is made by combining Parmesan, some type of leaf, and a whole bunch of olive oil. This “superfood pesto” is here to rebel against the ways of the past! Made with only kale, peas, nutritional yeast, chia seeds, flax seeds, garlic and some water – it definitely lives up to its “superfood” name!
You might be wondering, “what’s nutritional yeast?” Only the best, most important, life-changing ingredient ever invented in the whole entire world! It’s an amazing seasoning that gives dishes a nutty, cheesy flavor. Best part? It’s made with only the best ingredients, and it’s vegan! Just one tablespoon of nutritional yeast gives you 40% of the Vitamin B12 you need in a day. This is AMAZING because vegetarians tend to be deficient in Vitamin B12, which is used to help the brain and nervous system function. I put nutritional yeast in so many warm dishes. It works perfectly when used in a scramble, a hash, sprinkled on a sweet potato, in a Buddha bowl, even on avocado toast (okay, you got me, everything tastes good on avocado toast) :). If you try out this superfood seasoning, please let me know what you think!
Now let’s get on to the recipe! As always, if you make this recipe please send me a photo by tagging me on instagram @myplantedplate, or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org! I’d love to see your recreations! Enjoy!
Vegan Garlic Spaghetti Squash with Kale Superfood Pesto
Yield 2 bowls
A delicious and healthy twist on typical Italian spaghetti- this spaghetti squash packs a ton of fiber and nutrients in every bite. It tastes amazing paired with an oil-free vegan kale superfood pesto! This recipe is vegan, vegetarian, Whole 30 approved, gluten free, and more!
For the Spaghetti Squash:
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 1/3 cup sun dried tomatoes, chopped
- 1/2 cup mushrooms
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 garlic clove
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- small handful of basil (to garnish)
For the Pesto:
- 2 cups kale1.5 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 cup peas
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 tbsp flax seeds
- Preheat oven to 375ºF
- Place spaghetti squash in the microwave for 4 minutes (this will make it easier to cut in to). Then, cut the spaghetti squash in half length-wise, and scoop out the guts and seeds (you can also save these for later to roast) from the spaghetti squash. Place the spaghetti squash face-down on a baking tray lined with parchment paper, and put it into the oven for 40-42 minutes.
- While the squash is roasting, blend all the ingredients for the pesto together. The consistency should be smooth and semi-chunky. You may need to add some water to help blend.
- Add oil to a saucepan, and sauté the mushrooms on medium heat for about 4-5 minutes, or until slightly brown.
- Once finished roasting in the oven, take out the spaghetti squash and let it cool for about 5 minutes.
- Using a fork, scrape out the inside of the spaghetti squash and place it into a bowl (1/2 spaghetti squash = 1 bowl). It should have noodle-like strings and be a vibrant yellow. Press garlic into the bowl and mix around. Top with pesto, mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes, walnuts, and basil.
- Eat and enjoy!
- The picture of my bowl on this post is using half of the recipe.
- You don't need to add the extra clove of garlic in to the pasta since there's already two in the pesto, but it helps enhance the flavor.
- You can sub nutritional yeast for shredded parmesan or you can take it out altogether (although this may change the flavor of the pesto).
- You can also add a pinch of salt into the pesto, but I didn't find it necessary.
Serving Size 1 bowl
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value
Total Fat 24.6 g
Saturated Fat 2.4 g
Sodium 131 mg
Total Carbohydrates 48.8 g
Dietary Fiber 12.6 g
Sugars 4.9 g
Protein 18.1 g
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.