Easy Air Fryer Spaghetti Squash made in just 25 minutes! A great low-carb alternative to regular spaghetti. Add your favorite pasta sauce for an easy meal!
Have you hopped on the spaghetti squash train yet? I started making this meal years ago as an alternative to pasta dishes. If this is your first time making spaghetti squash, you may be surprised at what a good stand-in it is for pasta. When cooked, it resembles an al dente, angel hair-like pasta noodles. You simply spoon out the long strands from the inside of the squash, add some seasoning or pasta sauce, and you've got a simple side dish or main meal at the ready.
I've always made spaghetti squash by roasting it in the oven or, when I'm looking for something easier, cooking it in the microwave. But even the microwave option requires a few stops and starts. I wanted something quick and easy, and since I've been experimenting with all sorts of air fryer recipes, I thought: Can I make spaghetti squash in the air fryer?
Turns out you can, and it's a simple way to get dinner on your table in less than 25 minutes. Top this delicious dish with some cheese, fresh herbs, olive oil, or marinara sauce, and it's a great recipe for weeknights, or when you're trying to cut down on calories and carbs.
Why This Recipe Works
- Easy. Sure, cooking spaghetti squash in the oven isn't too hard, but you still have to get your oven going, and it takes a long time. The air fryer is such an easy way to make it and it results in perfect spaghetti squash every time. Plus, it takes so much less time - only 25 minutes. It's a huge time saver!
- Delicious. I love this recipe because of its simplicity, and it's the same basic ingredients I use when making spaghetti squash in the oven. Simple ingredients, including fresh herbs or Italian seasoning, some olive oil, and a sprinkling of cheese make this one of my favorite recipes.
- Healthy. Spaghetti squash is a great substitute for pasta noodles and is a healthy way to get your pasta fix without the guilt. I love a big bowl of these "noodles" topped with a simple olive oil and cheese, or my favorite spaghetti sauce.
- Air fryer magic. The air fryer transforms the spaghetti squash into fork-tender strands with a delightful golden crispiness.
- Versatile. Spaghetti squash is an incredibly versatile dish, It can be used almost anywhere you'd use spaghetti, and can easily be a main dish or a side.
- Inexpensive. Spaghetti squash is cheap to buy and is available year-round in the grocery store making this a great economical dish if you're on a budget (or just trying to offset the price of groceries these days!)
Just a few simple ingredients make this air fryer spaghetti squash recipe a winner.
- Spaghetti squash. Consider the size of your air fryer when choosing the size of your squash. If your air fryer is on the smaller side, you'll need to choose a smaller-sized squash.
- Olive oil. Olive oil adds richness and helps achieve a golden crispiness when cooking the spaghetti squash in the air fryer. It also contributes to the overall savory flavor of this dish.
- Parmesan and mozzarella cheese. The combination of these cheeses creates a gooey, cheesy texture that perfectly complements the spaghetti squash. It's the key to making this recipe irresistibly delicious.
- Panko breadcrumbs. Panko breadcrumbs add a delightful crunch to the dish. Mixed with garlic, herbs, and olive oil, they form a flavorful topping that elevates the overall taste.
- Fresh herbs. Thyme or oregano, fresh basil, or a mix of all three, adds a herby deliciousness to this dish.
How To Air Fry Spaghetti Squash
Cooking spaghetti squash in the oven is an easy way to make it. Here's how to make this delicious recipe:
- Prepare the squash. Place the spaghetti squash on a large cutting board, and using a large, sharp knife, slice off the ends of the spaghetti squash and halve it lengthwise. Using a large spoon, remove the spaghetti squash seeds from the squash halves (you can scoop them out). This creates a small well for the toppings.
- Air fry the spaghetti squash. Drizzle a little bit of olive oil over the top of each half, then add a sprinkle of salt and black pepper, and place them in the air fryer basket. (Try to get them both in the basket with the squash cut side up, but if the size of the squash is too large, it's ok to put one at an angle so they'll fit. Just don't stack them on top of each other. You want the hot air to be able to circulate the cut sides of the squash so that it all cooks evenly.) Air fry the halves of the squash at 360 degrees F for 20 minutes.
- Prepare the toppings. While the squash is cooking, mix Parmesan, mozzarella, panko breadcrumbs, garlic, herbs, and olive oil in a bowl.
- Fluff and top. Remove the squash from the air fryer, and fluff the inside with a fork. The spaghetti squash noodles should resemble angel hair pasta at this point. Add the shredded mozzarella to each side and mix it into the fluffed squash. Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture over the top.
- Final air fry: Return the squash to the air fryer and cook at 360 degrees F for an additional 2 minutes until the cheese melts, and the breadcrumbs turn golden.
Variations And Substitutions
I love the simple olive oil, herb, and cheese mixture, but there are many different ways to use spaghetti squash noodles.
- Try a different sauce. Experiment with different sauces like marinara, alfredo sauce, pesto, or a homemade tomato sauce to customize the dish to your taste.
- Use a different cheese. Feel free to explore various melty cheeses, such as cheddar or gouda, to add your unique twist to the recipe.
- Make it vegan. Omit the cheese all together to make this a vegan dish.
- Add a protein. You can easily add meatballs, chicken, beans, or any other protein to this dish to make it a hearty main.
- Experiment with different seasonings. I love using fresh herbs here, but if you don't have any on hand you can easily substitute in an Italian seasoning, some garlic powder, or onion powder for a delicious take.
- Low-carb substitutions. For those following a low-carb diet, this dish is a perfect alternative to traditional pasta. Explore different low-carb sauces for added variety.
Frequently Asked Questions
Refrigerate any leftover spaghetti squash in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
You can reheat the spaghetti squash strands in the microwave. If the mixture seems a bit dry, just add a little olive oil or butter, or your favorite sauce.
You can freeze spaghetti squash, however be aware that it can be a bit soggy once you thaw it out. To freeze leftovers, allow the dish to come to room temperature, then store it in a freezer-save, airtight container for about 3 months. Allow the squash to thaw before reheating.
Spaghetti squash is rich in vitamins C and B, making it a healthy choice. It's also a great low-carb substitution, aiding in managing blood sugar levels.
If you don't have an air fryer, roast the squash in a traditional oven at 400 degrees F for approximately 30-40 minutes. (Note - the cook time will vary depending on the size of your squash.)
Cooking spaghetti squash in the air fryer has become one of my favorite ways to prepare it. It makes a delicious side dish or main meal and is super customizable based on what you're in the mood for.
If you try this Easy Cheesy Air Fryer Spaghetti Squash Recipe, let me know what you think in the comments below. And don't forget to tag me @frontrangefed on Instagram so I can see your masterpiece - I'd love to see how you customize this dish!
More Easy Weeknight Pasta Dishes
- Lasagna Al Forno With Cheese And Vegetables
- Pumpkin Mac And Cheese
- Cajun Shrimp Pasta Recipe
- Quick And Easy Dump And Bake Meatball Casserole
- Creamy Seafood Tetrazzini With Shrimp
- Lazy Baked Lasagna With Frozen Cheese Ravioli
- Easy Lemon Salmon Pasta
- Chickpea Stew With Orzo And Greens
Easy Cheesy Air Fryer Spaghetti Squash Recipe
- 1 large spaghetti squash
- 3 tablespoon olive oil
- salt to taste
- black pepper to taste
- 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- ½ cup Panko breadcrumbs
- 2 garlic cloves grated
- 1 teaspoon fresh herbs (such as thyme, oregano or basil)
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- Prepare the spaghetti squash by slicing the ends off and then halving the squash lengthwise. Using a large spoon, remove the seeds from the open side of the squash.
- Place the spaghetti squash in the air fryer basket, sides up. Drizzle each half with 1 tablespoon of oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook the squash for 20 minutes in the air fryer at 360 degrees F.
- While the squash is cooking, mix the Parmesan cheese, panko breadcrumbs, garlic, herbs and remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a small bowl.
- Remove the squash from the air fryer when finished cooking and fluff the inside of the squash with a fork. Add ½ cup of mozzarella cheese to each side and mix it into the squash, then sprinkle each half with the breadcrumb mixture.
- Return the squash to the air fryer and cook at 360 degrees F for 2 additional minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the breadcrumbs are golden.