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I've tried using spaghetti squash as a substitute for pasta a few times, but every time I do the dish ends up really watery.

I've been roasting the split squash for about 45 min in the oven, then scraping out the flesh and then mixing it with my sauce. When I first shred the flesh it's definitely moist and steamy, but it doesn't seem to be overly wet. A few minutes after I've added it to the pan with my sauce however, it renders off what seems like a cup or two of water.

Most recently I've even tried wringing out the strands in a clean towel over the sink before mixing it. That did seem to help, but it still watered down the sauce way too much for my taste.

Has anyone else encountered this issue? Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to prevent it?

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7 Answers 7

up vote 2 down vote accepted

One simple change you could make is to simply not mix the squash with the sauce, instead, plate the squash and then pour sauce over the top, the sauce will cool quicker which will reduce the amount that the squash cooks past the point you decided that it was ready.

If the squash still cooks too much on the plate, try starting your sauce earlier and letting it cool so it's warm but not scalding when served.

I wouldn't recommend just taking the squash out before it's done and letting it finish in the sauce, since as it's cooking, it releases water, which would be lost in the oven, but would thin the sauce if it's cooking in the sauce pan.

If you need mix it with the sauce before serving, let the sauce cool to the point where it won't cook the squash further before doing so.

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The best way I've found is to put it in a strainer and salt it. But I also try to hand squeeze as much water as I can (a few times). Turns out great and it's a great option for people staying away from pasta.

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Welcome to the site! We're a food and cooking site, not a health site, and we're concerned with the question at hand, not whether pasta is healthy, so I've edited your answer slightly. –  Jefromi Mar 13 '13 at 4:02

I slice my squash in half, scrap the insides out. Add salt, pepper, and a little olive oil to coat both sides. roast in oven at 400 for 30 mins. Comes out perfect everytime. I learned this method in a gourmet cooking class.

As far as the squash being too watery, just dont mix the sauce and squash...just spoon the sauce on top before eating. If you absolutely have to, wait till everything is cooled down to mix.

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I recently cooked spaghetti squash for around 45 minutes in the oven at 350 and it cooked perfectly. It was very flavourful and was not watery at all.

I cooked it again yesterday and accidently left it in almost an hour. This time, it was very watery and I tried eating it last night and it had almost no flavour. I heated some up today and added my usual seasonings and had to add more as it still hardly had any flavour. I guess the 15+ minutes extra cooking time messed it up.

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Was it a different squash? It could well have just inherently had less flavor and more water. –  Jefromi Nov 29 '12 at 0:32

If you're plating with a harm to hot sauce, your squash will cook further; try removing the squash and shredding it 5-10 minutes earlier than you normally would, and allow the shreds to rest until they've cooled to room temp; the heat from the sauce will finish the cooking process, and warm them up again.

This is similar to adding slightly undercooked noodles to a sauce while it's still cooking, but better suited to something as delicate as spaghetti squash.

Oh, one more tip; when roasting your squash, start with the cut sides facing down to steam it, then flip them facing up with a bit of water in your roasting pan for the remainder of the time; it cooks the squash all the way through, but also gives it a great roasted flavor from the outside layer of flesh.

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You could try putting it in a seive, salting it slightly and then placing a weight on it for about ten minutes. That should draw a lot of the water out of it.

Don't forget to adjust the sauce for the salt added to the squash.

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I've heard that spaghetti squash can be more watery if your overcook it, so perhaps take it out of the over a little earlier as it will continue to cook once you've added to to your sauce.

I can't say I've had this problem before but they are quite watery squash. Perhaps you could try salting it when roasting in order to draw out some of the water?

You can also try draining it in a colander/using a salad spinner before adding to your sauce.

Another possibility is to cut down the liquid in your sauces in order to compensate.

Have you ever tried cooking it in the microwave? It won't have the same roasted flavour but you may find it works better for you.

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