Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats

Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats are spaghetti squash halves stuffed with sauteed mushrooms, white beans, kale pesto, and plenty of cheese.  This is lightened up comfort food at it’s best!

Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats are spaghetti squash halves stuffed with sauteed mushrooms, white beans, kale pesto, and plenty of cheese. This is lightened up comfort food at it's best! @FlavortheMoment

I have a love/hate relationship with running.  I love that it’s one of the most effective ways to stay fit, but I kind of hate the actual running part.  It’s never been easy for me — I think some people are just born runners and the rest of us suffer through it.  The fact that every course I take from my house ends with a big hill doesn’t help either.   It does give me a great sense of satisfaction afterward, so there’s that. 🙂

I just got back from a run, and I’m ready to dig into one of these Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats!  They’re so hearty and satisfying that you will not miss the pasta.  That’s a guarantee.  The last thing I want to do after I put myself through a run is blow it on a plate of pasta, so this is the perfect thing.

Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats are spaghetti squash halves stuffed with sauteed mushrooms, white beans, kale pesto, and plenty of cheese. This is lightened up comfort food at it's best! @FlavortheMoment

You have tried spaghetti squash haven’t you?  I was hooked the first time I had it, and now I actually prefer it to pasta with my Meat Sauce with Red Wine and Mushrooms, and Turkey Sausage Bolognese.  This was the first time I’d made it with pesto and I really loved the flavors.  It was also the first time I’d eaten spaghetti squash boat-style, and it was definitely fun!

You can roast your spaghetti squash in the oven very easily, but I love microwaving it so that it’s done even faster.  Just halve your squash (I use a paring knife), and place it cut side down in a microwaveable dish with about an inch of water in the bottom of the dish.  Cover it tightly and microwave for about 15-20 minutes and shred it up!

Spaghetti Squash Collage

While the squash is in the microwave, saute your mushrooms and make your pesto.  I have lots of kale in my garden right now, so I used that for my pesto.  The kale pesto has a big bold flavor that I love, or you can certainly use my Spinach Walnut Pesto or Lemon Pesto Sauce if you wish.  I added the pesto and some hearty white beans to my mushrooms, then tossed that into my shredded squash.

Next comes the fun part.  Preheat your broiler and top those spaghetti squash boats with plenty of grated mozzarella cheese.  Broil them until the cheese is melted, and you’re ready to eat!

Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats are spaghetti squash halves stuffed with sauteed mushrooms, white beans, kale pesto, and plenty of cheese. This is lightened up comfort food at it's best! @FlavortheMoment

The glory of this dish is that it’s completely customizable.  You can use whatever veggies you have on hand, or toss in some leftover chicken if you don’t feel like going meatless.  And you can use as much of this pesto sauce as you like.  I tossed some in and served the boats with extra sauce because the more pesto the better in my book.

These Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats are so hearty and delicious — they’re really going to surprise you.  They come together in all of 30 minutes, and you can even make the mushroom pesto mixture ahead of time to make life even easier.  And the best part?

They didn’t blow my run. 🙂

And now it’s Eat Seasonal time, where a group of bloggers join up to share recipes featuring seasonal produce!  This month I used winter squash and kale from the list we were given.  Thank you to our wonderful host Becky from The Vintage Mixer, and be sure to visit her November Seasonal Produce Guide for even more recipe inspiration this month.

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You can get in on the fun too, using the hashtag #eatseasonal to share your seasonal recipes as well.  Be sure to visit the links below for the other Eat Seasonal blogger’s recipes!
Quinoa Salad with Roasted Beets, Fennel and Fried Goat Cheese by Food For My Family
Apple Crumble Pie Joy Food Sunshine
Pesto and Burrata Stuffed Acorn Squash by Vintage Mixer
Apple Cinnamon Quinoa Muffins by Letty’s Kitchen
Autumn Apple and Kale Salad with Parmesan and Roasted Pumpkin Seeds by Simple Bites
Maple Spiced Winter Vegetable and Kale Bowl by Floating Kitchen
Butternut Squash, Mushroom and Poblano Enchiladas by Completely Delicious

 

Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats are spaghetti squash halves stuffed with sauteed mushrooms, white beans, kale pesto, and plenty of cheese. This is lightened up comfort food at it's best! @FlavortheMoment

Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats are spaghetti squash halves stuffed with sauteed mushrooms, white beans, kale pesto, and plenty of cheese. This is lightened up comfort food at it's best!
Author:
Serves: 2 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 spaghetti squash, halved
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup white beans, rinsed and drained
  • ⅔ cup grated mozzarella cheese
For the pesto:
  • 1 bunch lacinto kale, tough stems removed, roughly chopped, washed, and drained slightly
  • 3 tablespoons toasted walnuts, roughly chopped*
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Halve the spaghetti squash with a paring knife lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Place in a small microwaveable baking dish filled an inch or so of water. Place the squash cut side down and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Microwave for 15-20 minutes or until the tip of a knife is inserted easily into the bottom of the squash. Remove from the dish when cool enough to handle and pat dry with a paper towel. Place on a rimmed baking sheet cut side up and shred.
  2. While the squash cooks, prepare the mushrooms. Heat the olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes or until the mushrooms have browned and the liquid has evaporated.
  3. Place the kale in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until roughly chopped. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the lemon juice, garlic, and parmesan cheese, and pulse to combine. With the machine on, add the olive oil through the feed tube in a steady stream and process until incorporated. Add salt and pepper to taste, and process once more. This can be made ahead!
  4. Add ¼ cup of the pesto sauce to the mushroom mixture along with the beans and toss to coat. Divide between the spaghetti squash boats and toss gently.
  5. Preheat the broiler. Top the squash with the cheese and broil until the cheese has melted. Serve with more pesto sauce if desired, and enjoy!
Notes
You'll have extra pesto sauce, so this recipe can easily be doubled if desired. My Spinach Walnut Pesto and Lemon Pesto Sauce would also be great for this recipe!
You can also roast the spaghetti squash in a 400 degree oven on a rimmed baking sheet covered with foil. Simply scrape out the seeds, brush with olive oil, salt and pepper, and roast for 40-50 minutes until tender.
This meal is completely customizable so feel free to use whatever veggies you have on hand!
Recipe by Flavor the Moments.

Cheesy Pesto Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Boats are spaghetti squash halves stuffed with sauteed mushrooms, white beans, kale pesto, and plenty of cheese. This is lightened up comfort food at it's best! @FlavortheMoment