Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Sausage and Kale

Spaghetti squash is winter squash unlike any other. When you cook it and scrape it with a fork, the flesh peels away like ribbons of pasta, hence the name. The taste is light and texture almost a little crunchy. Spaghetti squash’s best friend? Sausage. They just like each other, like pasta and meatballs.

So when I saw this recipe in my friends Todd Porter and Diane Cu‘s stunning new cookbook Bountiful, with recipes inspired by their garden, I couldn’t wait to dive in. I changed it ever so slightly, adding a cup of sliced kale for some green, and using minced red onions instead of shallots. Score! Thank you Diane and Todd, this recipe is fabulous.

Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Sausage and Kale Recipe

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4.

Ingredients

  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • One 3-pound (1.4 kg) spaghetti squash
  • 3/4 pound (340 g) turkey sausage (or any favorite sausage)
  • 1/2 cup minced red onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 to 2 cups thinly sliced kale
  • 1 cup (100 g) coarsely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh oregano
  • Kosher or sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Method

1 Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Oil a sheet pan with one tablespoon of the oil, or line the sheet pan with Silpat.

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2 With a sharp chef's knife, slice off 1/2-inch from the ends of the spaghetti squash. Then stand the squash up on one of the ends to stabilize it, and cut the squash in half, top to bottom. Scoop out any seeds and stringy bits inside, and place the squash halves cut-side down on the oiled or lined sheet pan. Poke the tops of the halves with the tip of a sharp knife.

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3 Bake for 35 to 45 minutes until you can easily poke the sides of the squash with a fork. Remove from oven and let sit until cool enough to handle. Then using the tines of a fork, scrape out the "spaghetti"-like strands of the squash to a bowl.

4 Pinch and remove small chunks of sausage from the sausage casings to a plate.

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5 In a large sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil on medium heat. Add the onions and cook until soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Then add the garlic and cook for a minute more. Add the sliced kale and cook for a minute or two. Add the sausage, and cook without stirring, until the sausage starts to brown, then stir and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the sausage bits are cooked through, about 2 to 3 minutes.

6 Add the spaghetti squash strands to the sausage mixture and stir to combine, cook until the squash is heated through, about a minute.

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7 Remove from heat and add the grated Parmesan cheese and oregano. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

Recipe adapted from, and published with the permission of the authors of, Bountiful: Recipes Inspired by Our Garden by Todd Porter and Diane Cu.

 

Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Sausage and Kale on Simply Recipes

59 Comments

  1. Joanna Spadafora

    Hi Elise,

    This recipe looks wonderful, I was wondering do you think it would freeze well? It seems like a great idea for lunch!!!
    Also I have one last question I am looking at puchasing a new skillet, do you have any suggestions?

    Thanks so much!!!

  2. Jean

    Perfect recipe. Made it for my mostly Paleo husband tonight and he loved it. If you use pork sausage I recommend making sure you spoon off the excess fat before stirring in the squash. Another great recipe from my favorite food site!

  3. Jen.

    We made this for dinner last night – it just so happened that I had a huge spaghetti squash on hand and was looking for an interesting way to prepare it. This dish was awesome! I never would have thought of using sausage with the squash – fantastic. Will definitely be working this one into the rotation!

  4. Ginny Gibbs

    We made this tonight – it just looked so good in the description, and I knew the spaghetti squash was something we needed to try, as my husband is diabetic. He loved it, and loved how low-carb it was for as much “comfort food savor” it had. This recipe is going in the kitchen binder!

  5. Alicia*

    Since your fingers were a little forgetti, I’m reminding them how to spell “spaghetti” (in the ingredient list). ;-) Can’t wait to try this BTW.

  6. mike jackson

    I tried a spaghetti squash recipe quite awhile ago. After roasting the squash and “forking” it – tasted it and was disappointed when found it to be sweet. I just remembered the spaghetti squash I purchase was green. The one used in this recipe is yellow. Is there a difference? I would LOVE to try this mouth-watering recipe BUT what can I do about sweetness? HELP

  7. Angie

    I’d cooked a spaghetti squash only once before and I only recently tried kale, so I was intrigued to try this recipe. I made it tonight and Hubby and I both loved it! Next time, though, I will double the kale since the 1 cup cooked down and got a little lost in the squash and sausage. Thank you!

  8. Sarah

    I started a nutritarian-based diet recently, and this recipe fit the bill. The dish came out perfectly! I used sweet Italian turkey sausage and a whole head of kale (maybe 3 cups), to make it a really nutrient-rich meal, and ended up only needing half of the spaghetti squash. I guess the other half will be used to make spaghetti tomorrow night! Thanks for another great meal, Elise.

  9. Matt

    I made this over thew weekend. Was a bit put off initially when I cut into the spaghetti squash by its pumpkin-ey aroma, and figured this dish was going to be a wash out(eww…pumpkin.) In the end did the squash tasted fairly neutral and not too much like pumpkin(thank goodness). Was really good, but I was wondering if the ‘noodles’ are supposed to be a little crunchy or did I not cook it long enough? Been saying I’d make spaghetti squash for quite some time but this was a first for me. Thanks for the recipe Elise!

    • Elise

      Hi Matt, yes the noodles are supposed to be just a little crunchy, but not much, just a little more than pasta, which isn’t at all crunchy. The real test for doneness is does the fork easily scrape up the shredded spaghetti squash? There should be no effort.

      • Matt

        In that case it came out fine…wish I thought to bunch up some paper towels first to hold it with before it went flying across the floor because it was too hot :)

    • Maria

      That’s happened to me cooking spaghetti squash at times. I think it’s the squash and not the cook. I cooked the spaghetti squash in the microwave…saves time of time.

  10. Sarah

    Wondering if anyone knows if this reheats well in a microwave? I too am looking for healthy recipes I can make on the weekend and bring to work for lunch.

  11. Maria

    This was fabulous! Made it for dinner tonight and presently have Lemon Marscapone Blondies in the oven. Thanks for the wonderful recipes!!

  12. Enia

    hate to be the lone nay-sayer, but I thought that was waaaaay too much cheese. I will cut it at least in half next I try it, if not in quarter.

  13. Paula Francese

    Unfortunately this was not a hit in our house. Not sure why that was. I’m not in the habit of cooking spaghetti squash but will look for another preparation to see if we can grow to appreciate it.

  14. Juliet Davenport

    Elise, I make this tonight and it was fabulous! I subbed in spinach for the kale, and garlic/herb chicken sausage from Trader Joe’s. Truly great! Thanks for doing what you do – keep up the great work!

  15. Mary

    Just made this Saturday night, and it was real good. I substituted spinach for the kale since I had that on hand, and used Jimmy Dean breakfast sausage. We had the rest of it last night and my hubby said it’s a keeper!

  16. Elizabeth

    Made this tonight and LOVED it! Only things I did differently was using chicken sausage and also adding a few handfuls of fresh spinach. I’d up the greens even more next time because they really do cook down so much. My meat and potatoes loving husband went back for seconds :). Can’t wait to make this for my gluten free friends who miss their pasta. Thanks for a great recipe!

  17. Sam

    It was awesome!!! It was the first time I’ve ever had spaghetti squash so I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it turned out really well.
    Have you thought about putting out a cookbook? I consistently love your recipes–they’re easy to follow, not too complicated and super delicious. My favorite is the tomatilla with shrimp and feta. Super yum!

    • Elise

      Thanks for the kudos Sam. If you like this recipe I strongly encourage you to pick up a copy of Bountiful, the beautiful cookbook from which I got the recipe (my only addition was to add kale). Diane and Todd are dear friends and fabulous cooks. Every recipe in that book is wonderful.

  18. Hugh W. Lydiard

    This dish is really the bomb. First time I tried spaghetti squash, and I love it. Have made it a couple times already. I am such a fan, Elise. I’m from Acton, and live in DC now. So I really appreciate your New England connection, as well as your Mexican connection because my Dad (from Boston) spent a lot of time in San Antonio (USAF) during the Korean Conflict so he (and eventually Mom) raised us on Tex Mex too. Brava!!

  19. Elaine

    I loved this recipe. I used Isernio chicken apple sausage which gave it a lot of flavor, maybe too much flavor. I didn’t feel the parmesan was needed. I added some lime juice, because I had it on hand but next time I’d put in a generous squeeze of lemon. This dish really screams for lemon, in my opinion. Also I agree that 3 cups of kale would be fine.

  20. Donna

    I baked the squash before I went to work and scooped out the (spaghetti) and refrigerated it. When I got home I did the rest for a fairly quick meal. It was really good and even my husband liked it.

  21. Andrea Elkins

    Delicious! I used a slivered white/yellow onion as that’s what I had on hand. Also doubled the amount of kale. Between my husband and myself we ate the whole thing!

    Also, as someone else suggested, you can cook the squash in the microwave to speed up the process. I cut the squash in half, scoop out the guts & seeds and invert one half (cut side down) in a bowl with a few tablespoons of water. Microwave on high for about 8 minutes for each half, then let cool before scooping out the strings. Easy way to cook any kind of squash, really.

  22. Kristin Nicole

    First, I love Todd Porter and Diane Cu – they are amazing, so I am sure this dish is nothing but wonderful. I haven’t tried cooking with spaghetti squash, and I don’t know if it’s because I love pasta so much and I am scared to try this, or simply scared it won’t come out good. But I think I’m going to have to try this recipe. Thank you for sharing.

    xo

  23. Buffalo Sauce Chef

    I can’t believe how good this recipe was! Normally my family hates squash and it’s a struggle to get them to eat any vegetable really. This recipe went over so well, I was asked to make a double batch next week to make sure everyone has enough. I’m going to play around with the meat and try some fresh venison we just got. I’m guessing it will be even better! Thanks again!

  24. kelly

    So happy to see this recipe tonight. I have the spaghetti squash and wanted to try something different — luckily have some Italian sausage. The oven is preheating :D

  25. Sun

    I have to admit that when I saw this recipe, I was hesitant to try it. I tried spaghetti squash years ago and didn’t like it: I thought it was too crunchy, flavorless, and just not worth the effort. I’m happy to report that I did try it and it was delicious, especially the day after, when the flavors really had a chance to meld together. I will admit that I roasted my spaghetti squash at a higher temp — 425 F. — because I wanted the high heat to “caramelize” the squash and make it more flavorful. It definitely made my squash softer, and it didn’t come out as “stringy” as yours, and whether that was due to the higher cooking temp or because of the squash, I don’t know. I used Olivier’s Butchery’s (in San Francisco’s Dogpatch neighborhood) Provencal sausage and packaged organic baby kale. This recipe is definitely going on the keeper list — thank you!

  26. jen

    Hi! I hate spaghetti (I have no idea why, it’s probably just a stubborn habit at this point!) and so have resisted even trying spaghetti squash because of the correlation. What a fool! I love, love, loved this recipe! Thank you for turning me on to it! I used local hot italian sausage (Humboldt County, CA yay!) and it was amazing. I too doubled the greens. I had chard on hand so i used that, but next time i think i would quadruple the greens. What can i say? We are lucky enough to have amazing meat and produce here, that I was able to use ALL local ingredients, even down to the olive oil! Awesome recipe!

  27. Kaylee Kolditz

    This was so yummy. I added sundried tomatoes. What a wonderful option for those of us who are not supposed to have pasta.

  28. Amy B

    I’ve now made this recipe twice and my family LOVES it – teenagers included. I use a whole bunch of kale as well – doesn’t seem to alter the flavor – and have used two different types of sausage. My husband, not usually impressed by squash, just said, “You have renewed my faith in the squash family.” (He has a botany background.) And, I used the SR app on my phone for the recipe since the kids were on the big computer. Thanks!

  29. Sharon F

    After weeks of unhealthy holiday overeating, this was the perfect meal to start the new year – it will definitely make a repeat appearance on my dinner table. I made a few minor changes: replaced the red onions with shallots, nearly doubled the kale, and used both spicy and sweet Italian chicken sausage. Absolutely delish!

  30. Olivia V

    Made this today with chicken sausage and no parmesan (didn’t have any). Sprinkled it shredded manchego. The whole family loved it!

  31. Samantha N

    Wow, this was delicious!! My boyfriend said “This is one of the top 3 to 5 things you’ve ever made”…and I cook a LOT. Used extra kale, and I actually stuffed the filling back into the squash shells, topped them with extra parmesan, and broiled them. Fantastic!

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