Spaghetti Squash with Vegan Vodka Sauce, mushrooms, and spinach is a hearty and healthy dinner. One of the best homemade pasta sauces, you won't believe how easy and tasty it is.
Why You'll Love this Spaghetti Squash with Vegan Vodka Sauce:
This may be on the heartiest and healthiest riffs on the Italian-American classic that exists. A bright and creamy vodka sauce, golden mushrooms, and spinach make up the star trio.
This magic mixture gets spooned into spaghetti squash boats for the ultimate veg-on-veg experience. Of course you can enjoy the vodka sauce with regular ol' pasta, however spaghetti squash is a great alternative to up your veg game. Or, if you have picky eaters on hand, to entice them in consume veggies in the most delicious way.
This recipe comes together in right around an hour, making it well-suited for weeknights. It also holds up especially well for leftovers, so consider lunch tomorrow conquered.
How to Cook Spaghetti Squash in the Oven:
Roasting spaghetti squash is a super simple process. The hardest part is actually slicing the squash into two equal halves (tip: use your sharpest chef's knife!). Here's how it's done:
- To start, cut your squash in half lengthwise. I'll reiterate, SHARP chef's knife and some elbow grease are requirements.
- Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and stringy insides. You can either discard the seeds or roast them like you would pumpkin seeds! They make a great crunchy snack.
- Next, brush the cut sides with olive oil and lightly season with salt. Place the squash halves cut side-down on a rimmed baking sheet coated with foil.
- Bake at 400°F for around 40 minutes, or until the flesh is fork tender. A good rule of thumb for doneness is if the spaghetti-like strands easily release from the skin. If not, continue baking and check on it every 5 to 10 minutes.
Once the squash is roasted, you're ready to fill it up! I prefer to eat it right out of the boat instead of dirtying a dish. Plus, edible serving bowls are some of life's greatest pleasures.
How to Make Vegan Vodka Sauce:
The ingredient lineup in this sauce may surprise you, but I promise it works! A mix of raw cashews, sun-dried tomatoes, nutritional yeast, and lemon juice form the base. Also in the mix is olive oil to smooth it out and black pepper to give it depth. The result is a bright and umami-rich sauce with a "cheesy" edge and crave-worthy creaminess.
Truly, the blind taster would never believe it's 100% plant-based.
And don't worry, you do NOT need to soak the cashews overnight. Simply add them to boiling water and let them sit for about 20 minutes. This softens them up just enough to reach their full saucy potential.
What to Serve with Spaghetti Squash:
The combination of heart-healthy fats and fiber make this dish quite satiating. It also offers a hit of protein from the nutritional yeast, spinach, and mushrooms. However if you're craving an extra protein source, you could add grilled chicken or shrimp to the squash boats.
I also love enjoying some crusty Italian bread on the side for dipping. (Homemade garlic bread is always a good idea, too.)
Since this recipe is 100% plant-based, it will stay good refrigerated for up to 4 days. I would, however, recommend to scoop the squash strands out of the skin and separate them into Tupperware containers with the sauce. Sprinkle on some fresh basil once you reheat it, and it's just as good as day one!If you give this recipe a try, be sure to tag #dishingouthealth so I can see your beautiful creations!
Other Spaghetti Squash Recipes to Try:
Browned Butter Kale and Fontina Spaghetti Squash
Skinny Chicken Alfredo Stuffed Spaghetti Squash
Spaghetti Squash with Vegan Vodka Sauce
- 2 small-medium spaghetti squashes about 1 ½ lbs each
- 4 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil divided
- 1 ¼ tsp. salt divided
- ⅓ cup raw cashews
- ⅓ cup oil-packed sun-dred tomatoes drained
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast
- 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
- ¾ tsp. black pepper
- 8 oz. cremini mushrooms thinly sliced
- ½ cup chopped shallots
- 5 cups fresh spinach
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 2 Tbsp. chopped basil leaves plus more for garnish
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Slice squashes in half lengthwise. Scoop out seeds and brush flesh with 1 Tbsp. of the oil. Season with ½ tsp. salt and place flesh-down on a rimmed baking sheet lined with foil. Bake squash until fork-tender, about 35 to 45 minutes, depending on size.
- Meanwhile, bring 1 ¼ cups water to a boil. Add cashews to water and remove from heat. Let stand 20 minutes.
- Transfer cashews and soaking water to a blender. Add sun-dried tomatoes, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, 2 Tbsp. of the olive oil, and ½ tsp. salt; blend until smooth. Stir in black pepper and side aside.
- Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and shallots; cook 6 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are golden. Stir in spinach and garlic; cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until spinach is wilted. Season with remaining ¼ tsp. salt and stir in basil. Add vodka sauce to pan and stir to coat veggies; cook 1 minute to warm through.
- To assemble, divide vodka sauce and veggie mixture evenly between squash boats. Garnish with additional fresh basil, if desired.
You have some kind of magic with food! Ok, so we made this dish tonight. The words coming out of my husbands mouth are, “This is bonkers, this is magical, oh my god - people that really love food would appreciate being served this. It is interactive ( He likes making the spaghetti in the squash.) he cannot believe it is dairy free! He takes a bite and rolls his eyes in ecstasy.
I am not kidding with you - as I write this at the table, he has the food on his plate and he keeps walking back to stovetop to take a bite of sauce- which, he already has on his plate. Lol. There is a good chance he will scrape the squash bowl clean and wear it on his head rubbing his belly in happiness!
Jamie- thank you for sharing this gift of yours!! You have made meal time so much fun!!
Wow! Super impressed with this. I’m a private chef and needed something vegan for my client and this recipe looked good. So delicious! I used king oyster mushrooms and it was great. Will make again!
Thank you for another wonderful recipe! My husband and I both agreed it was the best spaghetti squash dish we’ve had! The only change I made was to use the oil from the sun dried tomatoes instead of olive oil in the sauce- it was so nicely spiced I didn’t want to drain it. We’ll definitely be making this again and again!
I'm so glad you and your husband enjoyed the recipe!! Thank you for taking the time to leave a review!
A great alternative for those with nut allergies, I substituted the cashews for chickpeas. Came out delicious!
Thank you for taking time to leave a review, Cierra! I'm so glad the recipe was a hit.
I just made this... and I’m pleasantly surprised! It really taste like vodka sauce. 😁
Hi Asianna--I'm so glad you enjoyed it! Thank you for taking the time to leave a rating and review!
I see that the instructions say to add Vodka but I did not see it on the ingredients list. How much should I put in?
Hi Kim, there's no actual vodka in the recipe. The recipe states "vodka sauce" in the directions, however it's referring to the sauce you're making with the cashews (the "faux" vodka sauce),
Hi just wondering if you have a calorie count for this recipe?
This was fantastic. I am not a vegan but this looked so good. I could not find the yeast but I’m not sure how it could have made this any better than it already is. I will defiantly make this again and again!!
It's intriguing and I may try it, and if so, I'll let you know. It would satisfy those who are gluten-free and vegan, but those who can't eat nuts would be out of luck. As for me, a basic vegetarian, I'd jump right on it if indeed had vodka, but I don't see any.
Nope no need for vodka, though feel free to add it!
is there a different veggie you would suggest adding in place of mushrooms? thanks!
Hi Erin—I love broccoli with this, too!
For about 5 minutes I was just looking at these appetizing photos of this spaghetti squash dish! And the sauce... I guess, the title surprises everybody. It looks incredibly delicious. I think it tastes just as amazing as it looks at the photos. I have never tried to cook anything like this before. The recipe contains so many ingredients, I wonder how they come together and what the taste will turn out to be. I will definitely keep this recipe and will try to prepare it this weekend. Thank you!
Hi Ann, I'm so flattered you found the photos appetizing and recipe intriguing! I hope you give it a try!
It looks incredible
It's SO good, my friend! I hope you give it a try!