All you need is a spaghetti squash, which can be found at most grocery stores and farmer's markets from late fall all the way through winter. You can use whatever vegetables you have in your fridge or whatever ones your family enjoys. I've mixed it up quite a bit this past winter, basically throwing whatever veggies I had into the mix. The more the merrier, right?! If I'm planning ahead properly, I often times use leftover homemade spaghetti sauce that I've used earlier in the week instead of plain tomato sauce, although either will work.
If you haven't yet used spaghetti squash in your cooking, you should start. Right now. This squash is versatile and is incredibly easy to cook with either a microwave or the oven. It's called a "spaghetti" squash because when the flesh is serrated with a fork it separates into spaghetti-like strands. It's low carb and low calorie making it a great substitute for your usual pasta. Plus, one cup of spaghetti squash has just under 45 calories and counts as a full serving of veggies.
I have always been a pasta lover but after trying to cut out all the carbs I was eating, I was running out of side-dish ideas for dinner. Now Mr. Man and I substitute spaghetti squash for rice or pasta nearly weekly. We love it with tomato sauce, olive oil & a little bit of Parmesan cheese, or dressed up in bakes just like the one I'm sharing below.
Serving Size: 6-8
- 1 Spaghetti Squash, cooked
- 1 Red Bell Pepper, coarsely chopped
- 1 Zucchini, chopped
- 1/2 White Onion, coarsely chopped
- 1 Large carrot, shredded
- 1 Tomato, diced
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Salt & Fresh Ground Pepper
- 16 Ounces Tomato Sauce
- 1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
- 6 Ounces Mozzarella Cheese, shredded
- Your spaghetti squash needs to be cooked. You can poke holes in the squash with a knife on all sides and stick it in the microwave for 8-12 minutes, or until soft. Or if you prefer to use your oven, you can poke your holes and bake it at 375 degrees F for 45 minutes to an hour, or until soft.
- Whatever method you choose, when squash is nearly done cooking: place olive oil and veggies in a pan, season with salt and pepper and cook on medium heat, cooking until veggies are tender.
- Once squash is cooked, wait for it to cool enough to handle and slice it length-wise down the middle. Scoop the seeds and pulp out of each half. Once cleaned out, scrape a fork length-wise down the squash. You should end up with strings of squash that resemble spaghetti.
- Place squash in a casserole dish and add veggies, tomato sauce, and Parmesan cheese. Gently mix ingredients together.
- Sprinkle Mozzarella cheese on top of the dish and bake at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned and bubbly.
- Allow the "spaghetti" to cool for a few minutes, serve, and ENJOY!