Make absolutely perfect spaghetti squash in your pressure cooker or Instant Pot every single time! If you’ve ever wondered the best and easiest way to make spaghetti squash, this post is for you. Follow these easy step-by-step instructions and you’ll be all set for your Keto/Low Carb, Whole30, Paleo, Gluten Free and Vegetarian meal prep!
Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash Recipe
To be honest, I was pretty intimidated when I first got my Instant Pot pressure cooker! It sat in its box in a closet, completely untouched, for months. I guess I forgot about it, or just kept putting off learning how to use it.
But once I finally worked up the nerve to try it out a few times, I totally fell in love! It’s the best kitchen appliance I own, because it saves me so much time! I make things like cabbage and bacon, vegetable broth, jasmine rice, and cauliflower mash in it now and it’s so easy.
Once I learned how to cook spaghetti squash in the Instant Pot, it was a total game changer. I still like to make squash different ways, like baked spaghetti squash and air fryer spaghetti squash, but using a pressure cooker is a great way to save time when I’m in a rush.
Making whole spaghetti squash in the Instant Pot is truly as easy as it sounds! It’s one of my favorite recipes to easily make a delicious side in just a few minutes. And it is the best low carb replacement for all of your favorite pasta dishes.
Why You’ll Love this Recipe
Whole instant pot spaghetti squash is a win for so many different reasons:
- This is an easy way to meal prep for the week! Since spaghetti squash is super versatile, you can use it in tons of different meals throughout the entire week.
- Pressure cooking is essentially “set and forget”. So you can get this started and then turn your focus to other dishes for dinner. It’s one of my favorite ways to multi-task in the kitchen — think of the Instant Pot as your personal sous chef!
- There is essentially zero prep to this dish. Just pop it into the pressure cooker and watch the magic happen.
All you need to make this incredibly easy recipe is:
- spaghetti squash
For this recipe, I use an 8 inch whole squash. It should be about 2.5 lbs. However, cooking time kind of depends on the size of your squash.
If you have a squash that is bigger, then just add a few extra minutes onto the cooking time so that the center of the squash gets fully cooked and tender. A smaller squash will likely need less cook time, so keep that in mind as well.
How to Make Spaghetti Squash in the Instant Pot
- You only need like a minute or two of prep work and then fifteen minutes of completely hands-off time to make this absolutely perfect squash. Here’s your guide to cooking spaghetti squash in the Instant Pot:
- Pierce the skin of the squash with a pairing knife in a circle pattern around the middle of the squash. This is my handy trick to making it extremely easy to cut open after it’s cooked. Plus, it gives steam an escape route so the squash doesn’t crack or explode in the Instant Pot!
- Add the water to the pressure cooker and then set the pierced squash on the metal trivet.
- Cook on high for 15 minutes and then allow for a natural pressure release. This will take about 15 minutes.
- Open the Instant Pot and remove the squash using oven mitts, remove the trivet by the handles. Be careful, it will be very hot!
Set the squash on a cutting board — if it’s too hot touch, allow it cool for a few minutes. Once cool enough handle, slice across the squash following the pierced holes you made earlier.
Then use a spoon and gently scrape out the seeds. Use two forks and pull the cooked spaghetti squash away from the skin, separating it into tender spaghetti squash noodles as you go.
Serve the spaghetti-like strands immediately with a meat sauce or marinara sauce for a pasta dish, or any of your other favorite main dishes to pair with this side! Or, store in an airtight container until needed.
How to Store Leftover Spaghetti Squash
Place leftovers into an airtight container and allow them to fully cool. Then store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You can also freeze leftover spaghetti squash. Place it into an airtight container or a freezer bag with all of the air squeezed out. Store in the freezer for 4-6 months and allow to thaw in the fridge before using.
What to Serve with Spaghetti Squash
Believe it or not, spaghetti squash is the secret ingredient in Paleo grain free porridge too! And if you’re a sucker for the combination of chicken, bacon and ranch then you have to try this chicken, bacon & ranch spaghetti squash dish!
Tips for Success
- Make sure you choose a spaghetti squash that will fit into your Instant Pot without cutting it. If yours is too big to fit, you’ll just need to cut it in half, but part of the magic of this method is not having to cut it until it’s soft.
- If you do end up needing to cut your raw squash, I recommend microwaving the it for 2 minutes first. It softens the skin just enough to make cutting it a tiny bit easier!
- If you have it, use a grapefruit spoon to scrape the seeds out. It’s the perfect pointy shape to get them out quickly and easily!
If you don’t poke holes in the squash before cooking it, it could pop open and explode in the Instant Pot. The holes will allow steam to escape and will make a more properly cooked and tender end result.
Squash that is very mushy has likely just been cooked for too long. Make sure you are using the correct amount of cooking time for the size of your spaghetti squash. For reference, this recipe uses a squash that is 8 inches long and about 2.5 lbs and it is cooked on high pressure for 15 minutes.
More Instant Pot Recipes
- Mississippi Chicken
- Perfect Instant Pot Boston Butt
- Instant Pot Chicken and Rice Soup
- Instant Pot Chicken Fajitas
I’d love to hear about your experience making this recipe!
Please leave a comment below or tag me on Instagram @cookathomemom.
Perfect Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash
- 1 8 inch spaghetti squash about 2.5 lbs
- 1 cup water
- Wash and pat dry the spaghetti squash. In a circle around the waist of the squash, use a paring knife to make 1/4-1/2 inch cuts every few inches.
- Place the squash in the Instant Pot on top of the trivet. Pour a cup of water into the Instant Pot.
- Secure the lid and set to HIGH pressure for 15 minutes. Use a Natural Pressure Release to release the pressure (Do nothing and allow the steam to release slowly until the pressure valve drops).
- Carefully open the Instant Pot and remove the squash from the Instant Pot using the handles on the trivet. Set it on a cutting board. If it's too hot to touch, allow it to cool slightly.
- Slice across the squash, following the pattern from the pierced holes made with the paring knife.
- Use a grapefruit spoon to gently scrape out the seeds. They should come out very easily.
- Use forks to pull the squash away from the skin, fluffing and separating it a bit as you remove it.
- Eat and enjoy it right away, OR store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 5 days.