Spaghetti Squash “Cacio e Pepe” with Asparagus Ribbons

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spaghetti squash cacio e pepe style with asparagus

This recipe is a little twist on the classic Roman dish, “Cacio e Pepe”, which in Italian means, cheese and pepper. It’s traditionally made with three main ingredients, pasta, Pecorino Romano and crushed black pepper, there’s a little debate on using butter or olive oil, I use a combination, and never are there any added vegetables to the dish.

It’s simple and easy and most definitely comfort food at it’s finest!

cacio e peppe with spaghetti squash and asparagus

Like I said this is a twist on the classic, so in my version I decided to replace the pasta with wonderful spaghetti squash and for color and added depth of flavor I tossed in slightly cooked and wilted asparagus ribbons.

spaghetti squash cacio e pepe style with asparagus

The same bold and creamy flavor of the Pecorino Romano comes out and balances the spiciness of the coarsely crushed fresh peppercorns just like in the traditional version.

I repeat, crushed fresh peppercorns!

Please don’t use that stuff that’s been sitting on a shelf for ages and looks consistently the same when you sprinkle it on, it will ruin the dish.

spaghetti squash cacio e pepe style with asparagus

The asparagus is simply shaved with a vegetable peeler and then slightly wilted in a saute pan then scattered about all over the top.

spaghetti squash cacio e pepe style with asparagus

Remember, the cheese and pepper are the key ingredients in this recipe, so don’t be shy!

spaghetti squash cacio e pepe style with asparagus

I promise you won’t even miss the pasta!

5.0 from 2 reviews
Spaghetti Squash "Cacio e Pepe" with Asparagus Ribbons
A twist on the classic Cacio e Pepe replacing the pasta for spaghetti squash and adding some asparagus ribbons.
  • 1 medium to large spaghetti squash
  • 1 lb asparagus, on the thicker size, not thin,shaved with a vegetable peeler into ribbons
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil, plus extra drizzle for sauteing asparagus
  • ¾ cup of coarsely grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • ¼ cup of finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • Coarsely crushed fresh peppercorns, to taste. Don't be shy!
  1. Preheat oven to 375, line baking sheet with parchment, cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds.
  2. Drizzle inside of each half with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place cut side down on parchment and cook until a knife goes through easily, be careful not to overcook.
  3. Let squash cool completely then shred with a fork to get long strands.
  4. Place squash strands on a paper towel to get the dampness out for a few minutes.
  5. Drizzle a saute pan with olive oil and place asparagus ribbons in tossing them until wilted and bright green. Remove so they can stop cooking.
  6. In the same saute pan add the 2 tablespoons of butter and the 2 tablespoons of olive oil, toss in the spaghetti squash strands and the ¾ cup of coarsely grated Pecorino, tossing gently until heated through and cheese starts to melt, also add in some cracked pepper while tossing. If it seems to thick add a couple of tablespoons of water to thin it out.
  7. Place on a platter, arrange asparagus ribbons all around and add the finely grated pecorino all over and more pepper.
  8. Finish off with a quick drizzle of olive oil.



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  1. Chris (Kiki) says

    After seeing a recent repost of this, I made it tonight as a side to our skirt steak. It was fantastic, and it didn’t even look as good as yours! Thank you for another wonderful veggie option ( and a way to use up our pecorino).

  2. This dish is absolutely delicious. The tip about letting the squash cool down and soaking the moisture out with paper towels made all the difference. Don’t know why I never thought of doing that myself, but I didn’t. Thank you, Marie!

  3. I made this last night but used Zucchini place of the Asparagus. My husband loved it. Thank you for sharing the recipe!

  4. I love Cacio e Pepe. I made it with pasta last week and made a pasta pie with the leftovers. This must be delicious with the Spaghetti Squash. Thank you for sharing this. I will be making it very soon!

  5. WOW! This one is a super star! Lovely colors.

  6. You are so incredibly creative Marie! What a fabulous recipe – and so healthy and low in calories, I can even have dessert…and for that I thank you even more:)

  7. You are a MIND READER. I was just asking hubby how he wanted me to fix our spaghetti squash and the ECCO! there is your post on my email. It sound absolutely wonderful!! I am pinning and making it. If it looks as good as yours I’ll post and refer back to you!! What and inspiration. Grazie! Grazie! Grazie!! Buona Giornata.

  8. Those asparagus ribbons really make this dish special, Marie! I love that dish is also a healthy gluten free option.

  9. You make everything look delicious and mouth-watering. I rarely cook spaghetti squash, but this one has changed my mi d. On with the pecorino.

  10. I can just imagine everyone at your dinner table.

    Thanks for the details of what to do and more importantly what not to do. I have had spaghetti squash at someone’s house, but it was watery and not much flavor. Now I know why.

  11. Carol (LaBanco) Szafalowicz says

    Just one question? WHO ARE YOU????????? And how do you think of these combinations!!!!
    I can’t take much more…………stop it already!
    Warmly, as always, Carol

  12. This looks fantastic, Marie. I will be giving it a try soon.

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