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Parmesan Zucchini & Spaghetti Squash with Pine Nuts

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After I published the recipe for Parmesan Zucchini and Garlic Pasta, one of the readers left a comment that she added walnuts to the zucchini pasta, and it turned out really good. The idea of zucchini cooked in olive oil, topped with melted, freshly grated, Parmesan cheese AND then sprinkled with some kind of toasted nuts has been brewing in my head for a whole day on Monday, and – voilà – all this thinking has thankfully not gone to waste and instead materialized into a delicious Parmesan Zucchini & Spaghetti Squash with Pine Nuts!

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This dish is so unbelievably good: the zucchini, spaghetti squash, Parmesan cheese and toasted pine nuts are meant to be together!

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As you can guess by the small number of ingredients, this recipe is extremely easy to make. First, bake the spaghetti squash at 425 Fahrenheit for 30-40 minutes.

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Second, cook zucchini in olive oil and garlic for about 5-7 minutes on medium-high heat, adding salt midway through cooking to make zucchini release its juices. Cook it covered, because you will want the juices from the zucchini to accumulate for when you add baked spaghetti squash and grated Parmesan cheese. The zucchini juices will coat the spaghetti squash and help the cheese melt beautifully throughout the whole skillet!

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This recipes is healthy, full of vegetables, gluten free, vegetarian.

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Parmesan Zucchini & Spaghetti Squash with Pine Nuts

Total Time: 60 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Parmesan Zucchini & Spaghetti Squash with Pine Nuts

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 zucchinis or 1 very large zucchini, sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 spaghetti squash, medium size
  • 1 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

    To cook spaghetti squash:
  1. Preheat oven to 425 Fahrenheit.
  2. Cut the squash in 2 halves, scrape out the seeds and the fiber out of each half. Spray oil over the cut sides of the squash. Spray the baking sheet with oil and place the squash on the baking sheet cut side down.
  3. Bake for about 30-40 minutes. Remove it from the oven when it's cooked through and soft, and let it cool. Flip the squash so that cut side faces up – that will speed up the cooling. After squash cools, scrape squash with a fork to remove flesh in long strands and transfer to a bowl.
  4. To cook zucchini:
  5. Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add sliced zucchini and minced garlic and saute for about 3 minutes, stirring, on medium heat, uncovered. Season with salt, stir, and continue cooking for another 3-4 minutes, covered, occasionally stirring, until zucchini softens and browns a bit. We are cooking it covered to preserve the juices. Note: Depending on the size of your skillet, you might have to cook zucchini in 2 separate batches.
  6. Add spaghetti squash to the skillet with zucchini and mix to combine, on low heat.
  7. Add freshly shredded Parmesan cheese into the skillet and stir on low heat to melt the cheese. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Top with toasted pine nuts.
http://juliasalbum.com/2014/09/zucchini-spaghetti-squash-with-pine-nuts/

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{ 37 comments… add one }
  • Shashi @ runninsrilankan September 9, 2014, 8:47 am

    Pine nuts are such an amazing textural addition to the zucchini and spaghetti squash!

  • Daniela September 9, 2014, 9:33 am

    Love everything about this dish. The combination of delicate flavors, the crunchiness of the nuts and the idea of a gluten free “pasta”.
    Well done, Julia!

  • Sarah & Arkadi September 9, 2014, 12:13 pm

    great gluten-free recipe! love the colours too!

  • Lindsay Kittleson September 9, 2014, 4:36 pm

    You read my mind! I’ve been looking for a great spaghetti squash recipe, preferably with something cheesy so my husband will give it a try. Thanks for sharing and great photos as usual!

  • Matt @ Runner Savvy September 9, 2014, 8:12 pm

    Looks good!

  • Yelena September 9, 2014, 9:25 pm

    Hello Julia, long time no see-)) How are you? You dish looks zoo good my friend!!! So scrumptious and delicious-)) I am glad that I stopped by, miss you-)))

    Hugs,

    Yelena

  • Holly @ Freshly Cut Kitchen September 10, 2014, 2:13 pm

    This recipe looks fantastic! I love all of these things, zucchini, spaghetti squash, and pine nuts in recipes of their own, but putting them together is genius! Can’t wait to try it!

  • sarah k @ the pajama chef September 12, 2014, 1:28 pm

    oh yum! this looks like such a great dish 🙂

  • Monica September 12, 2014, 5:30 pm

    I agree…I think some warm, crunchy nuts make everything better. I have no long ago discovered how much I like spaghetti squash. This is a great, flavorful, healthy dish.

  • Tina @ Tina's Chic Corner September 12, 2014, 7:19 pm

    What a great idea to add nuts! I bet it adds a lovely crunch. 🙂 Love spaghetti squash and this looks fab!

  • Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl September 12, 2014, 9:09 pm

    Loving this entire dish, and especially loving how yummy it is but yet healthy!

    • Julia September 25, 2014, 3:08 pm

      Yes, so delicious and healthy with so many veggies and healthy oils from pine nuts!

  • cheri September 12, 2014, 9:40 pm

    Love mixing the different squashes together, great recipe!

    • Julia September 25, 2014, 3:07 pm

      Loved the mix!

  • Lindsey @ American Heritage Cooking September 13, 2014, 11:38 pm

    Love, love, love spaghetti squash! This sounds like a delicious combination. Everything is better with toasted pine nuts!

    • Julia September 25, 2014, 3:07 pm

      I agree – pine nuts make everything so good!

  • Melanie September 22, 2014, 8:34 pm

    Wonderful recipe! Love finding different ways to fix Zucchini. Really liked the two squashes together.

    • Julia September 25, 2014, 3:07 pm

      I also love the idea of mixing 2 squashes together! Also, love to experiment with using zucchini differently than just in a zucchini bread.

  • Leslie Drake September 29, 2014, 3:18 pm

    This looks amazing! And it was perfect timing. I have some Mexican squash (interchangeable with zucchini) in the fridge I really need to use and spaghetti squash is almost a staple in my kitchen, so I saved this and printed it and plan on going to the store tomorrow. Thanks so much for this beautiful creation!

    • Julia September 30, 2014, 3:02 pm

      Leslie – you’re welcome! I really enjoyed this dish – I hope you will too! I haven’t been using spaghetti squash that much in the past but now I love it!

  • Caroline October 14, 2014, 8:31 am

    Does any one know the “Nutrition information” on this particular recipe? I am esp. interested in the calories. My husband is keeping a food journal…….his personal trainer wants him to stay under 1500 calories a day. ‘Thanks!!!!! 🙂

    • Julia October 14, 2014, 2:46 pm

      I know a lot of good bloggers use this site for nutrition information for recipes (I should too and start adding it to my recipes). Well, here is the link: http://caloriecount.about.com/

  • Eva October 26, 2014, 11:29 am

    I wonder if another kind of nut would work in this-almonds or walnuts, maybe? Sorry to say, I don’t like pine nuts. :0S

    • Julia October 27, 2014, 2:50 pm

      I think toasted almonds will work great here!

  • Kandy October 30, 2014, 9:56 am

    Love your recipes! They are not loaded with huge amounts of ingredients, have lots of fresh veggies, not labor intensive and look delish! I am pinning many many of your recipes. You are really helping me to find vegetarian meals for myself. Kudos!

    • Julia November 3, 2014, 3:24 pm

      Kandy, thank you so much letting me know that you’re enjoying a lot of my recipes! 🙂 Simplicity is key for me – I usually cannot handle too many ingredients. 🙂

  • Ashlee January 9, 2015, 9:40 pm

    Amazing recipe! Thanks for posting. It my first time making spaghetti squash and your recipe was amazing! My hubby loved it!!

  • Jess January 30, 2015, 8:46 pm

    This was just ok, like if you happen to have all the ingredients on hand (which I did) it makes a decent meal. It was lacking something, maybe some fresh herbs would have contributed to the flavor. Satisfying and healthy, but not overly delicious.

  • Cherish dellatore March 6, 2015, 4:39 pm

    Great recipe loved the flavor… Any tips to get the spaghetti squash less watery?

  • Christine October 27, 2015, 3:55 pm

    I gave this recipe a shot and thought it was super delicious! I featured it on my blog where I try out ideas I find on Pinterest. Check it out! https://iampinderella.wordpress.com/2015/10/23/spaghetti-squash-zucchini-parmesan-and-pine-nuts-the-tale-of-a-perfect-fall-side-dish/

  • Julie December 24, 2015, 12:43 pm

    Hi! I am making this to take to a family gathering. Can I make this ahead and re-heat in the oven? I will add the pine nuts after the re-heat.

  • Frannie50 January 22, 2016, 10:46 pm

    I enjoyed this and loved a new recipe for spaghetti squash. I do agree with Jess that this needed more spice. Next time I’ll add some basil or oregano, maybe a dash of cayenne.

  • Christina Aleman April 15, 2016, 7:13 am

    I’ve been looking for a unique and delicious pasta recipe when I found this. I think it’s just perfect,l light and not so heavy recipe. Thanks for posting.

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