Spaghetti squash alfredo is an easy, flavorful and gluten-free alternative to traditional alfredo. Oven roasted spaghetti squash is coated in a creamy and rich homemade alfredo sauce.
Spaghetti squash makes a great alternative to regular pasta - it's gluten free, filled with vitamins and minerals, and high in fiber.
This recipe can also be made with any regular, cooked pasta you have on hand - but I suggest giving spaghetti squash a try.
Ingredients and substitutions
- Any medium to large spaghetti squash, from 2.5 to 3.5 pounds, or two small spaghetti squash, will work for this recipe.
- Olive oil can be substituted with vegetable oil or any other cooking oil you have on hand.
- Salt and pepper lightly season your spaghetti squash while roasting in the oven.
- Unsalted butter - Can be substituted with salted butter, but remember to omit the salt listed for the alfredo sauce.
- Heavy cream is a must for making a thick and creamy alfredo sauce. Milk will not work - your sauce will turn out thin.
- Italian seasoning - I used a homemade Italian seasoning, but any store bought brand will work. If you don't have Italian seasoning on hand, use equal amounts of Italian herbs you do have on hand, like: oregano, basil, thyme, rosemary, sage, or marjoram.
- Parmesan cheese is another must, and it needs to be freshly grated. Pre-shredded cheeses are coated in anti-clumping powders. When melted, these powders make your sauce grainy. To prevent a grainy or clumpy sauce, grate the cheese yourself. It only takes a minute, but makes a major difference in the texture of your sauce.
- If you don't have garlic cloves on hand, they can be substituted with garlic powder (added with your other seasonings). However, fresh garlic adds exceptional flavor to your sauce that you won't get from garlic powder.
How to slice a spaghetti squash in half
To slice a spaghetti squash in half, you'll need a sharp chef's knife and a cutting board. You'll want to slice your squash through vertically from top to bottom, as evenly as you can.
Try slicing off the very bottom of your squash (about ¼ to ½ an inch), so that you have a flat surface to steady your squash while cutting.
If you're struggling, do not try to force the knife through - this could cause an injury.
Instead, try this trick. Prick your spaghetti squash all over with a fork, then microwave it for 2-3 minutes. This will soften your squash slightly, making it much easier to cut through.
Can I use regular pasta?
If you're not into spaghetti squash, or just want to try something different, you're welcome to use this homemade alfredo sauce on regular pasta!
Fettuccine, spaghetti, linguine, farfalle (bow ties), or penne would all make excellent pairings with this sauce.
For this recipe, I'd recommend using 8 ounces of dry pasta (or four servings) for this recipe. Cook to al dente, drain, and add to your finished alfredo sauce just before serving.
What to serve with alfredo
Want to add something extra? Here are my favorite additions.
For extra protein, add shredded rotisserie chicken, sliced grilled chicken, or sauteed shrimp.
Want to add more vegetables? Toss two handfuls of baby spinach into the sauce before the spaghetti squash and stir until wilted. Add your spaghetti squash, stir to coat, and serve.
Spaghetti Squash Alfredo
- 1 medium spaghetti squash, about 3 pounds
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ¼ cup unsalted butter
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1.5 cups fresh grated parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Slice spaghetti squash in half, lengthwise. Scoop out and discard innards and seeds. Coat the inside of the spaghetti squash with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the halves cut side down on your baking sheet. Bake for 30-40 minutes (depending on the size of your squash), or until squash can be pulled away easily with a fork.
- Allow squash to cool slightly, flip over (cut side up), and pull spaghetti squash strands away from skin with a fork. Set aside.
- In a saute pan over medium heat, add butter. Once melted, add minced garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add heavy cream, italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Stir and cook for 2 minutes (sauce should thicken slightly). Add parmesan cheese and stir until melted. Remove from heat.
- Pour sauce over spaghetti squash strands, optionally tossing to coat. Serve immediately.
- Spaghetti squash can be substituted with 8 ounces of cooked regular pasta.
- I highly suggest using freshly grated parmesan cheese, not cheese from a green canister or anything pre-shredded. Pre-shredded cheeses are coated in anti-clumping powders which cause the cheese to get grainy when melted.
- To make this dish vegetarian friendly, choose a parmesan cheese labeled as vegetarian or made using vegetable rennet.
- Alfredo sauce does not reheat well - sauce will separate (the emulsion breaks) when reheated in the microwave or on the stove top. I recommend only making enough sauce for one sitting.