This spaghetti squash and pear salad recipe is light and refreshing. It’s a cold salad made with sweet bell pepper, red onion, cucumber, fresh basil, mint and toasted sliced almonds. It’s easy to make, unique and super healthy. Enjoy this salad as is or topped with grilled chicken or fish.
This recipe was inspired by the bounty of fresh organic produce I had lying around, and the abundance of fresh herbs in the garden. I create recipes with what I have on hand and I shop for fresh, in season ingredients that I find at a good price.
A long time ago, when I first began grocery shopping and having to budget a weeks worth of meals, I was not so smart. I started with a list of dishes I wanted to make before writing the grocery list. You can imagine, I went over my small budget quickly! So, I highly recommend shopping freely (unless your catering to a menu of course). Purchase fresh seasonal vegetables, a couple options of protein and make sure your pantry is always stocked with oils, vinegars, grains, potatoes, onions and garlic. My dream of an herb garden finally came true a few years ago, and it’s awesome because fresh herbs make every dish better. I am not a green thumb, which is why I had to wait for my husband to do the job…… Thanks Bu!
I love when they have organic spaghetti squash at Costco… It happens about once a year and the cost about 1/4 of the price as our regular grocery stores. They just so happen to have delicious organic pears around the same time…. can you see where this is leading to?
Now, for the recipe:
- 1 spaghetti squash
- 3 pears
- 1 sweet bell pepper
- 1 cucumber
- 1 small red onion
- 2 cups sliced almonds (toasted)
- 1 bunch basil (about 1 cup torn)
- 1 small bunch mint (2 tablespoons minced)
- 1 shallot (finely diced)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 lemon
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 cup olive oil
This recipe starts by baking 1 small spaghetti squash. First cut the spaghetti squash in half, scoop out the seeds and drizzle with some olive oil, salt and pepper. Lay spaghetti squash on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper skin side up.
Bake squash for 40-50 minutes in a 375° oven. Remove squash from oven and let cool in the fridge immediately.
While the squash is chillin’ prepare the dressing first.
In a mason jar combine red wine vinegar, lemon juice, shallot, garlic, 1 teaspoon salt and pepper. Let this marinade for about 10 minutes before adding 1 cup of good olive oil and shake it up. Set aside.
Next, toast sliced almonds in a pan over medium low heat for about 10 minutes, tossing occasionally until light brown. Set aside.
When the spaghetti squash has cooled, using a fork fluff squash by running the fork sideways through the squash and scrape out the spaghetti. Add to a large mixing bowl.
Cut pear in quarters and remove the center with the seeds. Julienne slice each quarter and add to a large bowl.
Next, dice one sweet bell pepper, I used orange. Remove the seeds and dice small. Add to the bowl.
Now cut cucumber in half long wise, remove the seeds using a spoon and julienne sliced thin. Add to the bowl.
Remove the ends of one small red onion, cut in half down the center and remove the skin. Slice thin. Add to the bowl.
Chop one bunch of basil and add to the bowl.
Finely chop mint and add the bowl.
Now pour the prepared dressing over the salad and toss to coat.
Last, add the toasted almonds and a little more salt to taste.
Let the salad chill for about 30 minutes before serving.
Spaghetti Squash and Pear Salad
- 1 small spaghetti squash about 6 cups cooked and shredded
- 3 ripe pears Julienne diced
- 1 cucumber seeded and julienne diced
- 1 sweet bell pepper diced
- 1 small red onion Julienne diced (about 1/2 cup)
- 1 cup basil chopped
- 2 tbsp mint diced small
- 1 lemon about 1/4 cup juiced
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- 1 shallot minced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tsp salt divided
- ½ tsp black pepper divided
- 1 cup olive oil plus some to drizzle
- Pre-heat onen to 375°
- Cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise using a large sharp knife and some muscle.
- Remove the seeds and drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Bake on a parchment lined cookie sheet, skin side up for 40-50 minutes, or until the skin is soft.
- Chill squash in the fridge immediately after removing from the oven.
- Prepare the dressing with lemon juice, red wine vinegar, shallot, garlic, 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Let this marinde for about 10 minutes before adding the olive oil. Set aside.
- Toast almonds in a pan over medium low heat for about 10 minutes, tossing occasionally. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl combine cucumber, bell pepper, red onion, pear, basil and mint.
- When the squash is cold, fluff the inside using a fork scraping down the sides. Add to the bowl.
- Toss salad with dressing to coat.
- Add toasted almonds.
- Chill salad for about 30 minutes before serving.