This air fryer spaghetti squash recipe is a healthy substitute for pasta, and is on the table in a fraction of the time it takes to roast a squash in the oven. Perfect for low carb, keto, gluten free, and vegetarian meal plans!
Spaghetti squash is one of the most versatile vegetables you can serve up. It’s delicious with a variety of sauces and cuisines. You can top it with marinara or alfredo sauce, taco meat or chili, or go “plain” with just butter and parmesan, like we do in this recipe.
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Why Cook Spaghetti Squash in the Air Fryer?
The biggest reason to air fry spaghetti squash as opposed to baking it in the oven is that it cooks much faster in an air fryer. Squash takes about 45 minutes in a conventional oven versus about 25 minutes in a convection oven/air fryer.
As you know, 20 minutes at dinner time is the difference between making a healthy meal yourself and ordering a pizza or going through the nearest drive-thru.
But how about using a pressure cooker instead of an air fryer? Isn’t that fast, too? Yep, it’s fast too, but I prefer the air fryer because the “spaghetti” comes out drier with a little crispness on the edges, much like al dente pasta.
To me, a spaghetti squash cooked in an Instant Pot or other pressure cooker comes out kind of mushy and watery. It’s like over-cooked pasta.
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How to Cut a Spaghetti Squash
They can be a bit tricky to cut. So what I like to do is cut off a little bit of the top along with the stem, then trim off a bit on the bottom to make it flat enough to stand up. With the spaghetti squash standing on its flat bottom, I carefully cut straight down the middle from top to bottom.
Once it’s cut open, scoop out the seeds with a large metal spoon. Now it’s ready for seasoning and baking!
How to Air Fry Spaghetti Squash
Since spaghetti squash are a rather large vegetable and most air fryers are relatively small, most recipes call for you to cook only half of the squash at a time. If you have a toaster oven style air fryer though, you could cook both halves at once.
Brush or spritz some oil on the flesh of each half. I used olive oil in this recipe, but other oils like avocado or sesame are good, too. Add a little seasoning, like the garlic powder, salt and pepper in this recipe, and it’s ready to go in the air fryer.
How to Cook a Whole Spaghetti Squash in the Air Fryer
If your air fryer is big enough, you could air fry a whole spaghetti squash without cutting it in half if you want. I would trim off the stem end first, then just place the whole squash in the air fryer and bake.
It takes a little longer to bake, though, so if you need to cook it as quickly as possible, I would suggest cutting it in half. Plus, once the squash is baked, it can be harder to cut it open and scoop out the seeds.
How to Store Air Fryer Spaghetti Squash
Air fryer squash can be stored in the fridge for up to a week in an air tight container. As with other cooking methods, the squash tends to release water the longer it sits. Just pour off the water and reheat in the oven, air fryer, or microwave.
Can You Freeze Air Fryer Squash?
You can freeze any cooked squash, regardless of how it was cooked. Butternut squash freezes beautifully, raw or cooked. Cooked spaghetti squash freezes well, too.
I would suggest only partially thawing the frozen spaghetti squash, though, before reheating. I think this helps retain some of the moisture and helps prevent the squash from turning into mush.
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- ½ tsp. garlic powder
- Sea salt & black pepper, to taste
- 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- ¼ c. Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
- 2 Tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
1. Preheat your air fryer to 380 degrees.
2. Trim the top and bottom off the spaghetti squash to create a flat surface. Sit the squash upright and slice down the middle with a sharp knife. Scoop out the pulp and seeds. Reserve the seeds and set aside to toast later, if desired.
3. Brush the cut edges and inside of each squash half with olive oil. Sprinkle each half with the garlic powder and season with salt and black pepper, to taste.
4. Place the squash in the air fryer and cook for 25 minutes, or until it is fork tender. If your air fryer does not accommodate both halves of the squash at once, then repeat this with the other half once the first half is done.
5. Remove from the air fryer and cool for several minutes. Once cool enough to handle, carefully “shred” the inside with a fork to create spaghetti-like strands, leaving the shredded squash inside the squash shells. Avoid piercing the shell with the fork.
6. Drizzle the melted butter over the spaghetti squash and top each with some Parmesan cheese. Place back into the air fryer until the cheese is melted and starts to brown, about 2 minutes.
7. Remove from the air fryer and serve immediately with some freshly chopped parsley sprinkled on top. Enjoy!
Nutrition InformationYield 2 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 402Total Fat 29gSaturated Fat 11gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 17gCholesterol 40mgSodium 441mgCarbohydrates 33gFiber 7gSugar 12gProtein 7g