Vegan Spaghetti Aglio e Olio with Delicata Squash, Kale + Pomegranate
This vegan spaghetti aglio e olio with delicata squash, kale + pomegranate is comforting, nourishing, and vibrant. Whole wheat spaghetti (or pasta of choice) is tossed in a simple aglio e olio sauce made with olive oil, lots of garlic, lacinato kale, chili flakes, and vegan parmesan cheese. The warm, garlicky pasta is then topped with roasted delicata squash and juicy pomegranate seeds.
Course: Bigger Bites, Pasta
Cuisine: plant-based, Vegan
Servings: 4to 6 people
1medium delicata squash, halved lengthwise, seeded, and sliced into half-moon shapes*
Sea salt as needed
1poundwhole wheat spaghetti or spaghetti of choice
¼cupextra-virgin olive oil
8clovesgarlic, smashed and thinly sliced
1bunchlacinato kale, washed, dried, stemmed, and chopped
¾cuppomegranate seeds (seeds of about 1 medium pomegranate)
Preheat the oven to 375F. Line a small baking tray with parchment paper.
Spread the squash into an even layer in the lined pan. Roast for 20 to 25 minutes, or until tender (but not mushy) and beginning to caramelize, flipping at the halfway point.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil and add 1 tablespoon sea salt. Add the spaghetti and cook according to package instructions (you want the pasta to have a nice al dente bite to it). Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water, and set aside.
Heat the olive oil over medium-low heat in a large sauté pan. Add the garlic and kale and sauté for about 4 minutes, or until the kale just begins to wilt. Add the red pepper flakes and continue to cook for another minute or so.
Add the drained spaghetti to the pan along with as much of the parmesan as desired (I usually add about 1 ½ batches). Toss to coat and add the reserved ½ to 1 cup of the reserved pasta water, as needed to thin the sauce and coat the pasta. If needed, sauté for a minute, or until the sauce clings to the pasta.
Taste and season with sea salt, if desired. (I usually add another ¼ to ½ teaspoon sea salt but the amount you add will depend on your individual taste preferences and how much parmesan you used.)
Divide the pasta between bowls and top with the delicata squash and pomegranate seeds. Serve immediately.
*If you can't find delicata squash, substitute an extra-large sweet potato (peeled and cubed) or small butternut squash (peeled, halved, seeded, and cubed).