Spaghetti Squash with Kale and Walnuts is a simple meatless dish that's perfect for a light lunch or dinner. Oven roasted spaghetti squash is paired with sautéed onions and kale, then topped with walnuts and parmesan cheese.
Looking for a light and healthy dish for your next lunch or dinner? This recipe for spaghetti squash with kale and walnuts is incredibly easy to make, and comes together with just a handful of ingredients.
This dish is filled with flavor from onions and garlic, and has a nice crunch from the addition of walnuts. This dish is substantial enough to stand on its own as a meatless meal, or can be topped with your favorite protein. If desired, top with grilled, sliced chicken.
Ingredients and substitutions
Kale can be substituted with spinach. Since spinach is so delicate, it should be added with the spaghetti squash, allowing it to cook for one minute and wilt slightly.
Walnuts can be substituted with sliced almonds or chopped pecans.
Parmesan cheese can be omitted. Since parmesan cheese adds a bit of saltiness, you may want to add extra salt. The best substitutes for parmesan cheese would be romano or asiago cheeses.
To make this dish vegetarian, look for a parmesan cheese labeled as "rennet-free", made with vegetable rennet, or labeled as vegan parmesan cheese.
Slicing your spaghetti squash
The outside of a spaghetti squash is very tough when raw, so you may need to use a bit of force with a large chef's knife. Try slicing it from top to bottom, so gravity can assist.
If you're having a tough time, try softening your squash in the microwave. Pierce it all over with a fork, then microwave for 2-3 minutes, or until the skin is soft enough to cut through.
Roasting your spaghetti squash
Once your squash is sliced in half, simply scoop out the innards all the way to the firm flesh. The innards can be discarded.
Drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Then, place sliced side up on a prepared baking sheet. At this point, your squash is ready to roast - it's that easy.
Baking time will depend entirely on the size of your spaghetti squash. You'll know your squash is finished cooking when you can easily pull the strands back with a fork.
Spaghetti Squash with Kale and Walnuts
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ½ medium onion diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 cups kale packed
- ½ cup walnuts chopped
- ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese *
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees 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 1 tablespoon olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the halves cut side up 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. Set aside.
- In a sauté pan over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon olive oil. Once heated, add onions and cook for 4-5 minutes, or until onions are translucent and beginning to brown. Add garlic and cook for an additional 1 minute.
- Add kale to pan and cover. Allow to cook until kale has wilted, about 4-5 minutes. Meanwhile, use a fork to remove spaghetti squash strands from skin.
- Remove lid and add spaghetti squash and walnuts. Stir to combine. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and serve immediately.
- * To make vegetarian, substitute parmesan cheese with a rennet-free parmesan, vegetarian parmesan, or other Italian hard cheese that is labeled as vegetarian or vegan.