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Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai

Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai | A Couple CooksSpaghetti Squash Pad Thai | A Couple Cooks

Even after writing a blog for years, it’s still hard to put your work out there. You would think that after posting hundreds of recipes, adding yet another to the vast collection in cyberspace wouldn’t be a big deal. But it’s still hard to share a recipe with the world, knowing that readers may not be quite as invested as you are (since you picked out the squash at the market, thought for hours about the recipe, cooked it and then spent hours trying to capture its best angle).

All that to say, this recipe is truly one of my favorites we’ve made this year. I almost didn’t want to share it since it’s that dear to me. The squash is from our local market, and we cooked it up on a whim, not realizing it would turn out an explosion of flavor. I looked forward to the leftovers for days, and it even made one of my dear friends into a passionate advocate for spaghetti squash.

Spaghetti squash is often treated in an Italian manner by adding tomato sauce or herbs, but we loved this Thai take. It’s not a traditional pad thai by any means, but it’s a lovely variation. (Just remember – it’s not noodles!)

A few notes:

-Make sure to buy a large spaghetti squash for the recipe; if the squash are small, use two.

-When portioning the meals, give yourself a hefty portion of squash and top with a good amount of peanuts to make for a filling serving.

-This recipe work for many diets: vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free, with the potential to convert skeptics to eating squash.

Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai
 
by:
Serves: 4 to 6
What You Need
  • 1 large spaghetti squash
  • Olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 3 carrots
  • ½ red pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 5 green onions
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons sweet chili sauce
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 lime
  • Sriracha (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 1 and ½ cup bean sprouts, divided
  • ½ cup roasted salted peanuts, chopped
What To Do
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Using a large, sharp knife, cut the spaghetti squash in half. Scrape out the seeds using a spoon and sprinkle the cut sides with olive oil. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Place the squash cut side down on a baking sheet and roast until tender and easily pierced with a knife, about 45 minutes. When the squash is done, use a fork to scrape out the flesh of each half into “noodles”. Place the noodles in a colander or sieve and drain for 10 minutes to remove the extra moisture.
  3. Meanwhile, peel and shred 3 carrots. Thinly slice ½ red pepper. Mince 4 cloves garlic. Thinly slice 4 green onions. In a small bowl, beat together 2 eggs. Separately, thinly slice 1 green onion and chop ½ cup of fresh cilantro.
  4. In another small bowl, mix together 3 tablespoons sweet chili sauce, 3 tablespoons soy sauce, juice of ½ lime, and if desired, a few dashes of Sriracha.
  5. When the squash is ready, in a large skillet heat 2 tablespoons peanut oil over medium high heat. Add the garlic and green onions cook until fragrant, about 45 seconds. Pour in the eggs and scramble until almost cooked. Add the red pepper, carrots, 1 cup bean sprouts, and squash noodles. Add 3 pinches kosher salt and toss together. Pour on the sauce and stir to combine. Cook about 2 minutes, until the vegetables are heated through but still crisp.
  6. Garnish with plenty of crushed peanuts, fresh bean sprouts, cilantro, and green onion.
Notes
Inspired by Shared Appetite, BBC, and Alton Brown

 

 

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40 Comments

  • Reply
    carey
    November 6, 2013 at 7:51 am

    Ahh! Where has this been all my life? I adore pad thai, but the amount of noodle-y business going on in the dish had landed it in “occasional treat” territory for me. But with spaghetti squash? That’s a total game changer. (:

    • Reply
      Alex
      November 6, 2013 at 9:45 am

      You need to try it — it’s really terrific :)

    • Reply
      Christine
      August 10, 2015 at 5:00 pm

      I wholeheartedly approve this message :) I am minor-ly addicted to Pad Thai from Thai Express, but it’s SUPER calorie-dense. This squash version makes it so I can enjoy the flavor in a way that doesn’t make me feel terrible about myself :). I smelled it when the sauce went it, and OMGGGGGG…..yum. I didn’t have peanut oil so I cooked some finely ground peanuts in olive oil :P Also added some little chunks of leftover pork chop. I ended up with lots of peppers and snap peas instead of mung bean sprouts, cuz that’s what I had in the fridge… and still super delicious!!!! GOOD JOB! I can now make the room-mates eat spaghetti squash :)

  • Reply
    Kelly @ hidden fruits and veggies
    November 6, 2013 at 8:06 am

    No reason to have trouble sharing this recipe — it looks awesome! I think I’m equally invested in how delicious this looks as you are :)

  • Reply
    Tieghan
    November 6, 2013 at 9:14 am

    I love that you went Thai with this dish!! So not typical, but SO good! And beautiful!

    • Reply
      Alex
      November 6, 2013 at 9:45 am

      Thanks, Tieghan!

  • Reply
    Amy
    November 6, 2013 at 11:28 am

    I cannot wait to make this! Yesterday I randomly bought a spaghetti squash! (FYI – cilantro is not on the ingredients list.)

    • Reply
      Alex
      November 6, 2013 at 12:17 pm

      Perfect! Fixed (and don’t tell Sonja about the missing cilantro // I proofed the recipe)!

      • Reply
        Amy
        November 11, 2013 at 5:41 pm

        I just ate this for dinner and it is delicious! Thanks so much for the recipe!

        • Reply
          Alex
          November 11, 2013 at 5:46 pm

          So glad you enjoyed it!

  • Reply
    Caitlin
    November 6, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    Sounds yummy! We love spaghetti squash. Personally, I don’t really notice that it isn’t pasta :-) but of course I know it isn’t pasta. I like the little bit of an extra crunch spaghetti squash “noodles” have. Thank you for sharing!

  • Reply
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
    November 6, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    You guys always have the coolest recipe! I can’t wait to try this – it’s so colourful and pretty!

    • Reply
      Alex
      November 6, 2013 at 3:07 pm

      Thanks Katrina! Let us know if you try it! :)

  • Reply
    Elana @ The Inventive Vegetarian
    November 6, 2013 at 5:25 pm

    Whoa. This actually just blew my mind. Brilliant use of spaghetti squash!

  • Reply
    angela @ another bite please
    November 7, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    i so love the idea of this…it is nice to get a different variation of spaghetti squash then the standard marinara (which is wonderful as well) i can not wait to try this…thanks for sharing…and i know sharing is sometimes hard ;-)

  • Reply
    Ashley | Spoonful of Flavor
    November 7, 2013 at 10:54 pm

    This is genius! Pad Thai is one of my favorite dishes and I love spaghetti squash. It looks amazing!

    • Reply
      Alex
      November 7, 2013 at 11:08 pm

      Haha! Thanks :)

  • Reply
    Annie
    November 8, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    This sounds so great! I recently cooked spaghetti squash for the first time a month or two ago after many years of giving it the side eye. We loved it! I’ll have to try this version next.

  • Reply
    Carolyn B.
    November 10, 2013 at 8:31 pm

    Do you ever find the egg to be too done?
    I have made pad thai with spaghetti squash many many time and tend to do my egg as one of the last things because there’s nothing worse than a tough dry egg!
    Additionally, for a really country/traditional thai twist, use tamarind paste. You can get lots of places, usually in the Ethnic foods aisle.
    My sauce ends up being soy sauce, sweet chili sauce, tamarind paste, garlic, fish sauce, lime juice, and sugar.

    • Reply
      Alex
      November 11, 2013 at 11:51 am

      We don’t usually have trouble with the egg, but thanks for the tip! We have used tamarind paste before and it is delicious. Your version sounds great!

  • Reply
    Kim
    November 12, 2013 at 11:49 pm

    Sonja and Alex, thanks for this recipe! It was easily one of the best things we’ve made and eaten in a while. Dinner and a couple of work lunches later, it was gone too soon…we may have to make this again next week :)

    • Reply
      Alex
      November 13, 2013 at 8:43 am

      Glad you liked it! Thanks for letting us know; we always like to hear that a recipe works out :)

  • Reply
    Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes)
    November 16, 2013 at 12:08 am

    Oh gosh! I want this so badly! Amazing!

  • Reply
    Lindsay
    November 19, 2013 at 10:07 pm

    We made this for dinner tonight and loved it, so glad you guys shared the recipe! This one is a keeper, although I say that about almost every recipe I have made from your website!

    • Reply
      Alex
      November 20, 2013 at 8:34 am

      Yay! Glad you liked it :)

  • Reply
    Katherine
    November 23, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    Going to try this tonight! Any suggestions for a substitution for bean sprouts or should I really try to find them at the store?

    • Reply
      Alex
      November 23, 2013 at 3:52 pm

      I don’t think there’s really a substitute — if you can get them, they’re pretty great crunch for the meal!

  • Reply
    Cassidy
    December 23, 2013 at 7:47 pm

    I’ve made this twice in one week now.. SO amazingly good!!!

    • Reply
      Sonja
      January 2, 2014 at 8:05 pm

      Oh, so glad you enjoyed this! This is one of our favorites too :)

  • Reply
    Bethany
    January 27, 2014 at 5:26 pm

    I wonder if using my black sesame oil plus a bit of peanut butter might be a good substitute for peanut oil. It’s worth a shot!

    • Reply
      Alex
      January 27, 2014 at 11:11 pm

      Seems like it would be good :)

  • Reply
    Natalie
    February 14, 2014 at 7:34 pm

    My hubs just made this for me for v’day. All I can say is holy shit! It’s heaven. Don’t even feel guilty have a super large portion!!!! Thank you thank you for this. Will def become a staple in our home…

  • Reply
    Nathan Clark
    January 5, 2015 at 9:06 am

    Hey There! I just wanted to give you guys a major shout out for making me feel like a rockstar chef last night :) My partner, Andrew, is more experienced at cooking and tends to do more of it in our house. I had saved this recipe as soon as I saw it, thinking Holy Yum I Have To Try This! Went to the farmer’s market on Saturday and got everything I needed. I put on some groovy music and made some hot tea and went to town in the kitchen last night. I had so much fun making it and was more than impressed with the way it turned out. Andrew ate a 2nd serving and even had a mini 3rd serving. If you knew him you’d know how unlike him that is. He is all about portions. He raved and raved, telling me that I have to make it again soon. I was even told that I need to make this when we have company over. :) I was so proud and honestly couldn’t believe how delicious it was. We try to eat healthily and this is now on our regular meal list. Thanks so much Alex and Sonja! Sorry this is so long winded. If you’re thinking about trying this recipe..do yourself a favor and stop thinking. Make it! 5 stars. Peace and Love.

    • Reply
      Sonja
      January 5, 2015 at 9:24 am

      Nathan – thank you for sharing this with us! It makes us SO happy to know that this recipe worked out for you, and especially that you were able to impress the cook of the house as a new cook! This makes our day. Thank you so much for writing and I’m so glad you found this recipe delicious! Keep in touch and we’d love to hear if you make more recipes!

  • Reply
    suzanne
    October 28, 2015 at 2:46 am

    is there any way to make this vegan – sans eggs?

    • Reply
      Alex
      October 28, 2015 at 9:14 am

      Tofu would work fine as a substitute :)

  • Reply
    Alisha
    November 19, 2015 at 3:46 am

    I am so excited to try this recipe! I have almost OD on spaghetti squash spaghetti… Well almost. I’m in love with spaghetti squash for its delicious taste and texture. I have been wanting to do an Asian version and this will end perfect! Thank you

  • Reply
    Sue Ann Gleason
    January 3, 2016 at 8:11 pm

    OMG, stellar dish!! I’m in the grocery store thinking there MUST be a Pad Thai recipe with spaghetti squash so I ‘Google it.’ And all the usual suspects show up. I tend to avoid the usual suspects and then I see ‘a couple cooks,’ yes, my kind of site. (Nice branding.) I gathered together the ingredients, added shrimp because my husband would need that to try something like ‘spaghetti’ squash. We loved it. Passing this link on to my community. Eager to check out more of your recipes.

  • Reply
    Krystin
    January 27, 2016 at 11:23 pm

    I tried this recipe out and it was delicious! I am going to share it on my blog next week (you will be credited of course!) Thanks for sharing, was so good!

    -Krystin
    http://www.girlinbetsey.com

    • Reply
      Sonja
      January 31, 2016 at 8:36 pm

      Sounds great — thanks for trying it out, and so glad you liked it!

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