Pumpkin may be the star of the fall season, but spaghetti squash comes in as a close runner-up. The huge yellow orb in the grocery story might be intimidating to some—but it shouldn’t be. Spaghetti squash is a versatile superfood that will add nutritious value to your meals if you know how to prepare it. 

Watch this video from Real Simple for an easy demonstration on cooking and preparing a spaghetti squash. Start by cutting the gourd in half lengthwise, and then remove the seeds from the middle. Once you’ve done that, spread each half with olive oil, and place each half face-down on a baking sheet. Bake at 400ºF for 45-50 minutes, or until tender. When the squash is done baking, you simply take a fork to the insides and scrape. The spaghetti squash should loosen easily into noodle-like pieces. 

Enjoy this pasta alternative like you would enjoy other pasta dishes—except this “spaghetti” has fewer calories and carbohydrates than traditional pasta. It’s also packed with nutrients including vitamins A and C, folate, potassium, and fiber. Plus, spaghetti squash is gluten-free. So next time you want to have a big bowl of pasta, try using spaghetti squash as your noodle replacement.