Did you know 40% of the food produced in the U.S. goes uneaten? That means that 80 billion pounds of food (the equivalent of 1,000 Empire State Buildings!) is wasted each year.
When food scraps are sent to tightly packed landfills, they’re forced to decompose without oxygen (aka anaerobically), and methane is produced as a byproduct. Methane is one of the most powerful greenhouse gases and is a leading contributor to climate change.
Reducing food waste is one of the top three most effective ways to fight climate change, and it all starts in the kitchen. We’ve teamed up with Lauren Singer, founder of the zero-waste blog Trash Is For Tossers and the zero-waste shop Package Free, to share a waste-free, plant-based vegan spaghetti recipe perfect for putting your Imperfect Foods order to good use.
Package Free is a one-stop-shop for Zero Waste alternatives for everyday essentials. From kitchen and bathroom products to beauty and pet care essentials, they’re on a mission to make sustainable, non-toxic, and plastic-free products more convenient and accessible.
Recipe and photo by Lauren Singer of Trash Is For Tossers
Zero-Waste Vegan Spaghetti
- 1 spaghetti squash
- 1 onion
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 3 cups of diced tomatoes (any type of tomato will do)
- 4 stalks of kale or chard
- Half of a lemon
- Imperfect Foods Olive Oil (Packed in glass, which is a highly recyclable material)
- Compostable parchment paper or a reusable silicone baking mat
- Baking sheet
- Cutting board (Check out the handmade wooden cutting boards at Package Free)
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Cut the spaghetti squash in half and scoop out the seeds with a spoon.
Zero Waste Tip: Instead of throwing away the seeds and squash guts, consider saving them and trying one of these ideas.
- Place the halved squash on a baking sheet lined with either compostable parchment paper or a reusable silicone baking mat.
- Drizzle a few tablespoons of olive oil and some salt and pepper over the squash.
- Flip the spaghetti squash upside down so that the outer shell of the squash is facing up and bake for 40 minutes.
- While the squash is baking, dice the white onion and cloves of garlic and chop the kale.
Zero Waste Tip: Rather than tossing your onion skins, garlic peelings, and other food scraps into the trash, consider reusing them! Here are 10 creative and simple ways to upcycle your scraps.
- Add the onion and garlic to a saucepan with a few tablespoons of olive oil and leave to sweat on low heat for about 10 minutes.
- Once the onion is translucent and soft, add the diced tomatoes to the pan.
- Add in the juice of half of a lemon and salt and pepper to taste. Reduce for 20 minutes, or until you’ve achieved your preferred pasta sauce consistency. At the final 10-minute mark, add in your chopped kale or chard to soften.
- Once the squash is cooked, pull it out of the oven and tear it using a fork. It should tear easily! If it doesn’t, it’s a sign that it needs to be cooked for longer.
- Let it cool for a few minutes, then add to a plate and top it off with the sauce. Bon appetit!
Zero Waste Tip: To store any leftover vegan spaghetti, try these plastic-free food storage tools from Package Free to help keep food fresh for longer and reduce food waste.