THIS IS OFFICIALLY THE HEALTHIEST PAD THAI RECIPE EVER!!!! Not only does replacing the traditional rice noodles with spaghetti squash and shredded cabbage omit all those unnecessary carbs, but it adds virtually all the vitamins and minerals, not to mention a good dose of dietary fiber. This seriously tastes just like pad thai! Especially since spaghetti squash has a similar texture to rice noodles. I’m obsessed with spaghetti squash, typically eating it about twice a week. I never thought to make pad thai with it until my good friend Katie posted this recipe. Since I had pretty much everything to make pad thai in my fridge and pantry, I modified some of her ingredients (I didn’t have mushrooms or coconut milk) and this is what I came up with…
Prep time 40 minutes, cook time 20 minutes. Makes 2 extra large servings
For the Pad Thai sauce:
2 1/2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon sambal thai chili paste or ground dried chili pepper
2 tablespoons tamarind paste
4 tablespoons soy sauce or liquid aminos
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 large cloves garlic; minced
3 shallots; minced
½ cup coarsely chopped cashews
8 ounces super firm tofu; diced
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
3 cups shredded cabbage
6 green onions, chopped
2 cups bean sprouts + more for garnish
1 bunch fresh cilantro
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Place both halves face down on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for about 40 minutes. Alternatively, you can cook the squash in a microwave on high for about 15 minutes. Just poke the squash a few times with a sharp knife. When the squash is done cooking, remove the pulp and seeds from the center. The squash should separate into strands that look like spaghetti.
2. While the squash is cooking, you can prepare all the other ingredients so that they can be quickly added to your frying pan when called for.
3. In a small saucepan over medium heat, add the sugar, water, chili paste, tamarind paste, soy sauce and paprika. Heat until all ingredients are incorporated about 2 minutes. Strain the liquid into a small bowl discarding the seed and fibers of the tamarind.
4. In a large skillet or wok over high heat, add the veggie oil. To one side of the pan, add the cashews and to the other side add the shallots and garlic. Cook for about 2-3 minutes and then remove the cashews from the pan and reserve for later. Add the tofu to the pan and continue cooking with the shallots and garlic until lightly browned. Next, add the carrots and continue cooking for about a minute. Then, add the rice vinegar, spaghetti squash, cabbage, bean sprouts, ½ the green onions and all the pad thai sauce and continue cooking over high heat for about 3 or 4 minutes stirring continuously so that the ingredients don’t stick to the pan, all the liquid should be absorbed when done.
5. Remove the pan from heat and let sit for about 5 minutes to cool. Serve garnished with fresh bean sprouts, ½ the green onions, fresh cilantro, ½ the cashews and the juice of ¼ a lime. I also sprinkle some dried ground chili pepper on top. You can also add more soy sauce for flavor.