Internet, this is quite possibly the highlight of my culinary experiments in the kitchen!
I love spaghetti squash. I always have one on hand. I usually use it as an alternative to pasta, especially now that I am trying to eat as gluten-free as possible. However, lately I have grown a bit bored with the same old sauce recipe. I started to think of dishes containing noodles that spaghetti squash might be a good substitute for. Phó? No. Fettuccine Alfredo? Ehh. Casseroles? Possibly. Just as I was running out of ideas, I drove past a Thai restaurant and it hit me. Pad Thai!
I got home and immediately began Googling pad Thai recipes. Sheese! Pad Thai is a difficult dish to make. It takes precise timing, accurate measurement, and all kinds of fancy ingredients that one normally does not have on hand. Tamarind paste. Fish sauce. Palm sugar. Who knew?
Some day I’d love to make it from scratch, but on this particular evening, I used a store-bought sauce. No need to reinvent the wheel, folks. A quick note on store-bought pad Thai sauces. If you are cooking for someone with a gluten allergy, be sure to read the labels! This particular sauce did not have soy sauce in it. However, some do, even though soy sauce is not used in traditional pad Thai. I imagine this is a less expensive substitute for fish sauce, but who knows. Companies put all sorts of wacky things into food that shouldn’t be there nowadays. Anyway, the point is that soy sauce would void this from being a gluten-free dish. Kikkoman now makes a gluten-free soy sauce so if you are interested in making pad Thai from scratch, it is possible to make it gluten-free and vegetarian/vegan by using that as a substitute.
Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai
- 1 spaghetti squash, roasted
- 2 carrots, shredded
- 2 cups of bean sprouts
- 3-4 stalks of green onion, sliced
- 1/2 – 3/4 cup of store-bought Pad Thai sauce
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- Cilantro, chopped
- Coconut oil
Note: Traditional pad Thai also calls for egg. I happened to be out of eggs when I made this and it still tasted great! I will probably continue to omit the egg when I make this in the future because I don’t think the texture of egg and the texture of spaghetti squash together would be very good.
Prepare all of your ingredients and have them handy. Once you start cooking, this dish comes together in a few minutes.
- Roast and shred spaghetti squash. This takes about an hour, but can be done ahead of time.
- Shred carrots using a box grater. You can also buy carrots pre-shredded at the grocery store.
- Slice green onions and mince garlic. Set aside most of the green onion for garnish. Reserve about a tablespoon for the first cooking step.
- Melt about a tablespoon of coconut oil in a large fry pan. Cook garlic and green onion for about 3 minutes over medium heat.
- Add the carrots and cook for 1-2 minutes to heat them through.
- Add spaghetti squash and pad Thai sauce. Cook until heated through, about 2-3 minutes.
- Remove from heat and squeeze the juice of 1 lime over the spaghetti squash/carrot mixture.
- Place spaghetti squash and carrot mixture onto a plate.
- Top with bean sprouts.
- Garnish with green onion, cilantro, and chopped peanuts.
- Serve with lime wedges for those that like extra lime flavor.