Spaghetti squash has already had its’ moment, or maybe moments, of food star-dom. It first became popular when everyone gave up carbs as a substitute for pasta and made a comeback when those same people swore off gluten a few years later. But I’ve never liked it as an alternative to pasta. To me, spaghetti squash is sweet, like most other squash, and smothering it in tomato sauce doesn’t make it shine. I’d always been on the lookout for alternative ways to utilize spaghetti squash when I came across this recipe a few years ago in my (then) new Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. Intrigued by the flavor combination, I figured I should give it a try.
I never would have thought that putting spaghetti squash in a taco is all it would take to make it shine, but I’m so glad Deb did! (Leave it to her to make anything taste delicious). These spaghetti squash tacos have quickly become one of my favorite meals. The spaghetti squash stays slightly crunchy and shines with complementing spices and lime juice. Black beans are your source of protein and lend savory notes, while the crumbles of cheese add creaminess. I usually prefer flour tortillas, but I think corn are a must for this recipe to tie all of the flavors together. These tacos are quick to make, which means it’s a great meal for a week night. Plus, the leftovers are excellent on a salad or reheated and made into more tacos. Sadly, it’s hard to find spaghetti squash in Okinawa, but when I do, you know these (with a side of guac, of course) will be on our table for dinner that night.
Spaghetti Squash Tacos
- 2-3 pound spaghetti squash
- 2 tablespoons lime juice (about 1 lime)
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
- 12 8-inch corn tortillas (or 16, 6-inch)
- 15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 4 ounces crumbled queso fresco, feta or Cotija cheese
- Red or white onion, diced
- Cilantro, chopped
- Hot sauce
- Lime wedges
- Pierce squash all over with a sharp knife to prevent it from bursting. Cook in the microwave at high power for 5 minutes. Turn the squash over and microwave for 5-10 minutes more, until it feels slightly soft when pressed. Leave it in the microwave to cool for at least 5 minutes. It will be very hot!
- While the squash is cooking, prep your toppings and make the sauce. Whisk lime juice, chili powder, cumin, coriander and salt together in a small dish. Set aside.
- When the squash is cooled slightly, cut in half lengthwise. Remove the seeds and discard any slimy strands. Loosen and separate the flesh into strings with a fork, scraping it from the skin into a medium size bowl. Discard the skin.
- Pour the lime mixture over the spaghetti squash strands and toss together gently.
- To assemble tacos, spoon 2-4 tablespoons squash mixture onto a tortilla. Top with black beans, crumbled cheese and other toppings, as desired.
Recipe barely adapted from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook
Serving Size: 2 tacos (8-inch tortilla) Calories: 282kcal Carbohydrate: 46g Fat: 7g Protein: 11g