Creamy Pesto Spaghetti Squash

This summer I have been growing herbs in pots on the front porch. I have an abundance of fresh basil. There are probably a million good ways to use it, but a basic pesto is my favorite. Naturally, pesto goes great in a pasta dish. However, in summer pasta sounds too heavy.  When it’s warm out and you want to be active, something light and fresh always feels better. Whether you eat gluten free or not, I think that everyone should give spaghetti squash a try. After being roasted, it looks like spaghetti and the texture really holds up like a pasta. 

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I am sure tossing warm, roasted spaghetti squash with some fresh, bright green pesto would be delicious…but I had heavy whipping cream in the fridge (leftover from making ganache) and that’s where Creamy Pesto Spaghetti Squash came about.

It may seem like there are quite a few steps to this recipe, but they are all easy…you will be happy you tried it! If you want to cut out some time you can use store bought pesto (about 1/2 cup). There are some very good kinds available.

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Make sure you have a big, sharp knife to cut through the squash. It is hard to cut! I still haven’t mastered getting two, even halves.

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Scoop out all the seeds and stringy stuff.

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Oil, season, and place cut side down on a baking sheet covered with foil.

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When they are done, they will look like this…I know still doesn’t look like spaghetti.

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But start scraping and…

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While the squash roasts, you can work on the pesto.

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Add ingredients along with extra virgin olive oil to a food processor. I just have this mini one and it works great for pesto.

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Blend until it looks like this…

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Set aside.

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Start melting some butter and gently whisk in flour.

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Add the cream and whisk until it is a smooth, thick sauce. Turn off the heat.

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Stir in the pesto.

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Toss with spaghetti squash.

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Pretty parmesan curls made with a vegetable peeler never hurt…

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Time to eat!

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Recipe

Creamy Pesto Spaghetti Squash

Ingredients

Pesto

  • 1/4 cup toasted walnut pieces
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan
  • 20 basil leaves
  • 1-2 peeled garlic cloves (2 gives a fairly strong garlic taste)
  • 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil (may need a splash more if pesto is too thick)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cream Sauce

Spaghetti Squash

  • 1 spaghetti squash
  • oil or cooking spray
  • salt and pepper

Optional

  • Roasted chicken breast or shrimp

Directions

Spaghetti Squash

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Cover a baking sheet with tin foil
  • Cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise
  • Scoop out seeds and stringy insides (at this point it will not look like spaghetti)
  • Oil and season the cut sides
  • Place cut side down on foil
  • Roast in oven for 40 minutes
  • Let cool until it can be handled
  • Use a fork to scrape the squash into a bowl

Pesto

  • Toast walnuts
  • Peel 1-2 cloves garlic
  • Grate or measure out parmesan cheese
  • Wash and dry basil leaves
  • Add basil, walnuts, cheese, garlic, and oil to bowl of a food processor or blender
  • Add salt and pepper to taste
  • Blend until everything is completely combined into a sauce
  • If it looks too thick, add a Tbsp more of oil and blend again
  • Set aside

Cream Sauce

  • In a large skillet on medium low, melt the butter
  • Add flour and whisk gently for about 1 minute until completely combined, bubbly, and no lumps
  • Slowly add cream to pan while whisking
  • After it is combined, turn off heat and add pesto
  • Stir to combine

To Serve

  • Toss the spaghetti squash in the sauce
  • Serve with roasted chicken breast or shrimp

*Tips*

  • 1 spaghetti squash made 3-4 servings so you can double or triple the recipe
  • The spaghetti squash can be roasted and prepared a day or 2 ahead of time. Just refrigerate and then reheat when you are ready to use it.
  • Store bought pesto can make this a much more easy recipe.

Enjoy!

Jessica

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