Sweet roasted spaghetti squash topped with blistered tomatoes, creamy chickpeas, and an avocado pesto. Ready in 40 minutes and requiring fewer than 10 ingredients this vegan, gluten-free, meal is loaded with plant-based power.
Get ready for another simple, delicious, vegan meal. If you’ve got prepared squash or pasta this dish is only going take you about 10 minutes. Yeah, you read that right. An amazingly satisfying and plant-based meal ready in a snap. Keep reading for why you’ll love this dish.
Why you’ll love it
Like most of my meals, let’s discuss for a second why you and your family are going to make this a regular on your dinner menu rotation.
- Simple- Fewer than 10 ingredients, can be made in as little as 10 minutes, doesn’t get much easier than that
- Quick- As noted above, as long as you have leftover squash (or pasta), this dish can be one the table in 10 minutes.
- Satisfying- Full of vegetables, healthy fats, and plant-based protein this meal is well-rounded and sure to satisfy
- Customizable- Don’t have (or like) spaghetti squash? Use your favorite pasta. Bulk up the vegetable power by including spinach, kale, or chard. Don’t want to make your own pesto? Use your favorite store-bought brand, or sub with your favorite hummus.
Begin by preparing the spaghetti squash. I have found (over many years) that the best way to prepare spaghetti squash is as follows…Preheat the oven to 450*F. I know that may seem high but trust me, it’s going to give you an amazing char on the flesh of the squash that is unbeatable.
Cut the squash in half length-wise and scoop out the seeds and pulp. Bonus: if you’re looking for something to do with the seeds check out my post on roasted seeds here. Place flesh side up on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper then flip the squash over so that the flesh is down. Bake the squash for 40 minutes if small, up to 60 minutes if large.
Once the squash is blacked on the outside and soft to the touch you’ll know it’s done. Remove the squash from the oven and allow to cool. Once cooled, flip it over and, using tongs, pull the flesh squash from the skin. It will be tender, stringy and deliciously sweet.
Tomato and Chickpea Stuffing
In a medium-sized skillet, heat a teaspoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot add the sliced leeks. Cook or about 2-3 minutes until soft. Next, add the halved cherry tomatoes. Allow them to cook for 2-3 minutes until they’re soft and have ruptured their juices. Finally, add the drained and rinsed chickpeas cooking for an additional 2-3 minutes until warm.
To prepare the pesto add the fresh basil leaves, garlic, vegan parmesan, avocado, and lemon juice to a food processor. While the pesto is blending, drizzle in the olive oil until smooth and creamy.
To assemble the dish, plate the spaghetti squash (either whole and in the skin, or removed from the skin), top with tomato and chickpea mixture, and top with avocado pesto. If you so desire, top with more fresh basil and vegan parmesan. My favorite vegan parmesan is this recipe courtesy of Hannah Chia.
I certainly hope that you give this dish a try. Spaghetti squash with tomatoes and avocado pesto has become a favorite here with my family, and I know it will be with yours as well. Enjoy friends!
Ingredient Health Benefits
Basil- phytochemicals, volatile oils (antibacterial properties)
Lemon- vitamin C, vitamin A, calcium, potassium
Tomatoes- vitamin C, potassium, polyphenols
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Spaghetti Squash with Tomatoes and Avocado Pesto
- 1 large spaghetti squashed, halved and de-seeded
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 2 leeks, white only, sliced
- 1 pint cherry or mini heirloom tomatoes, halved
- 15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 large avocado, pitted and flesh removed
- 3-4 tbsp lemon juice
- ½ cup vegan parmesan
- 2 cups fresh basil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2-4 tbsp olive oil (start with 2 and add more if needed to thin)
- Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Sprinkle with pepper and salt and roast flesh side down for 40-60 minutes depending on size of the squash.
- In a medium skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Once hot, add sliced leeks. Cook for 2-3 minutes until soft.
- Add sliced tomatoes and cook for additional 2-3 minutes until soft.
- Add rinsed and drained chickpeas and cook until warm, 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Add all ingredients in order to a food processor. Process until smooth.
- To serve, place spaghetti squash half on a plate. Fill each squash half with half of the tomato filling and top with desired amount of avocado pesto. Additioanlly, top with sliced basil or vegan parmesan cheese.