Recipe fromMinimalist Baker
Cooked spaghetti squash is the perfect alternative to traditional pasta. Mixed with cheesy cashew sauce, this Italian-inspired dish is gluten-free, grain-free, and vegan — not to mention absolutely delicious!
1 cup raw cashews (soaked in hot water for 30 minutes, then drained)
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
2 tbsp lemon juice
½ tsp sea salt
1 dash garlic powder
¼ cup water
¼ cup fresh parsley or basil, optional
1 large spaghetti squash
3 tbsp olive or avocado oil
1 pinch sea salt
1/4 cup diced shallot
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pinch sea salt
Marinara sauce and meat-alternative, optional
- Begin by soaking cashews in very hot water for at least 30 minutes, up to 1 hour. Set aside.
- In the meantime, preheat oven to 400°F. Slice spaghetti squash crosswise into 2” wide rings for longer noodles, or slice in half lengthwise for shorter noodles. Scoop out the seeds and strings and rub the flesh with oil and sea salt.
- Lay squash on a baking sheet, cut side down if cut in half lengthwise. Roast until tender, about 40 minutes if roasting “rings”, and up to 45 minutes - 60 minutes if roasting two large halves. Time will vary depending on the size of your squash. Let squash cool slightly and then use a fork to separate the “noodles." Set aside.
- Once cashews are soaked, drain and add to a food processor or small blender. Add nutritional yeast, lemon juice, sea salt, garlic powder, and water and blend until smooth and creamy, scraping down sides as needed. Aim for a mostly puréed mixture with only small bits of cashews intact. Add a bit more water a little at a time if the mixture is having a hard time blending until almost smooth.
- Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more salt for overall flavor, nutritional yeast for cheesiness, and lemon juice for acidity. For even more flavor, you can add some fresh basil or parsley (optional).
- Heat a large rimmed skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the oil (or water), shallot, garlic, and a pinch of salt and sauté for 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Turn down heat if garlic is browning.
- Add spaghetti squash and toss gently to combine (with tongs if you have them). Sauté for 2-3 minutes, tossing occasionally.
- Add the desired amount of cheese sauce. We recommend starting with half and working your way up. You can serve the pasta with any leftover cheese sauce on the side. Continue cooking the cheesy pasta for 2-3 minutes more to combine the pasta and sauce, tossing carefully.
- Enjoy as-is, or top with marinara sauce and vegan meatballs! You can store leftover cheesy pasta in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. We suspect that it would keep in the freezer up to 1 month but haven’t tried it ourselves. (Pasta is usually best fresh.) You can store any leftover cheese sauce covered (separately) in the refrigerator for up to 5-7 days.
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What’s a classic recipe that your family enjoys? Share your kids’ favorite meals below!