Spaghetti squash is a winter vegetable that is enjoyed for its delicious nutty flavor. It is loaded with vitamins and minerals and makes a great low-carb substitute for standard spaghetti. Many people prefer to bake it, but there are several methods to cook it. You can roast, steam, but best of all,… you can microwave it!
How long to microwave spaghetti squash? The most preferred way is to cut spaghetti squash into half lengthwise, then put it in the microwave for 8-10 minutes.
But there are a few things to consider when you are cooking spaghetti squash in the microwave to get that perfect taste and texture.
Why Should You Microwave Spaghetti Squash?
It Is Super Easy And Convenient – Of course, the main advantage of cooking spaghetti squash in the microwave is that cooking can be done in just 12 minutes – easy and super-fast. Then you can make preparations for whatever recipe you’re dreaming about.
Better Nutrient Retention – Sometimes heat breaks the nutrients within vegetables, and that’s why microwaves do a better job at preserving nutrients as it uses less heat and cooking time.
It Doesn’t Compromise The Taste – The other reason you should try this method is that it doesn’t get overly caramelized, giving your dish a sweet taste, but you get a subtle and delicate flavor.
How to Cook Spaghetti Squash in the Microwave?
Not every squash can turn into smooth strands of noodles; you need to look for a medium-sized spaghetti squash because it is hard and heavy in size. You can easily find it in the food section.
Important tip: Make sure your spaghetti squash doesn’t have too many soft spots or cracks.
First Method – Cut in Half
Cutting it into half reduces moisture’s build-up and gives spaghetti squash a great texture and a very mild, neutral flavor.
Step 1: Soften it before cutting
Pat your spaghetti squash a few times with a fork and microwave them for 3-4 minutes before slicing them. This will soften the skin and make it easier to cut.
Step 2: Cut it using a sharp knife
Since spaghetti squash is hard to cut, you will have to use the kitchen’s sharpest knife. Place it on a stable surface, and remember to place your hand on a safe spot, away from the path of your knife. Work your way around the squash slowly and gradually from stem to the base.
Step 3: Remove seeds and pulp
With the use of a large spoon, you can scoop out the seeds and pulp. If you want, you can roast the seeds the same way you roast pumpkin skin.
Step 4: Place the squash and add water to a microwavable dish
Place them cut-side down of both halves in a microwave-safe dish. Fill the dish with about 1 inch of water and cover the dish with plastic wrap.
Step 5: Cook
Place the dish in the microwave and set the temperature on high. It will take about 8-10 minutes until you can pierce your squash easily with a fork.
Note: If the dish does not turn in the microwave, turn the dish halfway through the cooking process.
The cooking time depends on the size of the squash and the microwave.
Step 6: Scrape out the spaghetti squash strands.
Let the squash cool for about 15 minutes or for enough time until you can handle it.
Use a fork to shred the squash to have spaghetti-like strands. Toss some marinara sauce and olive oil, or prepare your dish using the desired recipe.
Second Method – Cook the Whole Thing!
The advantage is that it saves time, but whole cooking squash in the microwave makes it harder for seeds and pulp to separate.
Step 1: Pierce the spaghetti squash
Using a sharp knife, pierce the squash in several places.
Important Note: Do not place the entire squash in the microwave oven without piercing it first; otherwise, the steam build-up will cause it to burst.
Step 2: Microwave
Place the pierced squash into the microwave and set the temperature to high. Then cook for about 12 minutes.
Note: If you decide to take out your squash early but realize it is still undercooked, then slice it in half, scoop out seeds and pulp. After removing the seeds, place the halves in a microwave-safe dish and pour 1-inch water. Microwave it for about 2-3 more minutes.
Step 3: Slice
- Take out the squash using oven mittens or kitchen towel.
- Carefully place it on a cutting board and slice it using the sharpest knife in your kitchen.
- Let the spaghetti squash cool for about 15 minutes or until it is cool enough to touch.
- Remove the pulp and seeds using a spoon.
Step 4: Remove the seeds and pulp from spaghetti squash
Use a spoon to remove all the seeds and pulp from the squash.
Step 5: Scrape out the spaghetti squash strands
Use a fork to shred the squash to have spaghetti-like strands. Prepare your dish using your favorite sauce.
What are Good Recipes for Cooked Spaghetti Squash?
You can get a lot of available recipes! If you are looking for a simple dish, try topping with melted butter or parmesan, salt, and garlic powder. You can add brown butter sage sauce, spaghetti sauce, or Alfredo sauce to add more flavors to it.
You can pair your spaghetti squash with:
- Sausage and peppers
- Butter, salt, pepper, lemon juice parmesan,
- Roasted tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper
- Pesto, parmesan, salt, pepper
- Butter, cayenne, cinnamon
- Roasted shrimp, asparagus
- Curry powder, cilantro, peanuts
- Black bean slaw and avocados
- Greek chicken, feta, and slivered almonds
How Long Does Cooked Spaghetti Squash Last?
You can store cooked spaghetti squash strands in an airtight container in the refrigerator. If stored properly, they can be kept for up to 5-7 days.
You can cook spaghetti squash ahead of time and store it. It doesn’t only make prepping easy but also tastes good!
Can You Store Spaghetti Squash in the Freezer?
Yes! You can store cooked squash noodles in the freezer. You need to drain the squash of excess moisture to avoid it becoming soggy and mushy when you defrost it. Place the strands into a freezer bag, or make portions. Keep it airtight to avoid freezer burn. This way, you can freeze squash strands for up to 8 months.
Can You Reheat Microwaved Spaghetti Squash?
Absolutely! It is possible to reheat spaghetti squash, and amazingly it doesn’t stick together like the noodles. There are two options to reheat: You can either microwave it, or you can use the stove. The microwave is a more convenient option as it is super-fast.
Microwave: Place the squash noodles in a microwave-safe container with olive oil or butter, or you can also use your favorite sauce. Microwave for 60 seconds, then stir it and reheat at 15-second intervals, if necessary.
Stove: Pour the spaghetti strands into a saucepan filled with water and cook over medium heat for about five minutes. Drain and add spices to it.
Microwaving spaghetti squash is super easy, and you will find yourself becoming an expert in no time. Just follow the instructions properly, and you will have beautiful noodle-like strands that you can use as a replacement for pasta.
For faster preparation without compromising the taste, cooking spaghetti squash in a microwave is a better option.