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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?

12 Answers 12

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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.

  • ^^ this answer. Even when cooked or roasted, a significant amount of the squash is still water content. My adding it into the sauce and heating it even more, you are encouraging it to release liquid as it cooks more. Fork shred it to "noodle" form, then top it with the sauce, instead of adding it into the sauce and cooking it more. – PoloHoleSet Sep 26 '16 at 16:07
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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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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.

  • Was it a different squash? It could well have just inherently had less flavor and more water. – Cascabel Nov 29 '12 at 0:32
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I've actually found that if I cook my squash cut side down it ends up a LOT more watery. I would assume that it's because the water that should be draining turns to steam and becomes trapped by the peel. I don't usually have a problem if I bake it cut side up.

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I know the answer to this question; finally!!!! Put it whole in the oven on 425 degrees for about 30 to 45 minutes; you can smell it when it is done. Then cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, and scrape with fork. After everything is scraped out, put back into oven for 15 minutes. I use tomato paste, tomato sauce and a variety of seasonings and meat. This was not watery at all!!!!

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After baking it, cut side up, until done, I shred it and place in single layer on a baking sheet, and bake until slightly dehydrated and slightly crisped. This intensifies the flavor and makes a good bottom layer for casseroles.

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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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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.

  • 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. – Cascabel Mar 13 '13 at 4:02
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A friend adds an egg and the meat sauce when cool mix adds to casserole dish & baked. But doesn't eat until next day after she reheats..... "everything tastes better reheated".She doesn't eat cheese and thinks the egg gives it a cheese texture.

  • I am a bit confused how this relates to the question - are you suggesting that spaghetti squash should be baked into a casserolle to have its water absorbed? – rumtscho Jul 14 '17 at 11:06
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Before cooking sprinkle salt on the cut sides and let sit for 15 minutes. You will be surprised how much water comes out. Pat dry and then bake! Makes a huge difference!

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