Baked Spaghetti that is low carb and stuffed into a spaghetti squash? Sign me up! This makes a delicious, super filling weekday dinner with plenty of leftovers for multiple dinners or lunch the next day! You can totally make it vegan as well by just excluding the sausage from the sauce!
This was one of the best healthy dinners I’ve come up with in a long time. There are a few steps to it, but it yields 6 HUGE satisfying servings that can be eaten with a side salad or just by itself. It’s Baked Spaghetti Squash – baked spaghetti in a squash boat with no noodles, but loads of delicious meat sauce and cheese, so it’s low carb. But wait, I also have a dairy free version for ya!!
Because I am still eating dairy free while nursing the kiddo (he’s milk protein intolerant and I’m pretty miserable), I didn’t get to enjoy the full on dairy version, but it’s loaded with ricotta cheese and parmesan! Remington said it was amazing!
The sauce is a slightly healthier twist on our classic meat sauce made with spicy chicken sausage and less sugar. The thick, rich sauce coats spaghetti squash “noodles” with a ton of flavor made super creamy and delicious with a little cheese.
To make this dish dairy free, I just subsituted the ricotta and parmesan for vegan mozzarella shreds. I used the Follow Your Heart brand, but I’ve heard Daiya is also good. For me, personally, I’ve found that the dairy free cheese is really just not the same as the real thing, but it’s totally doable when it’s baked into something and melted. I mean, it’s still not quite the same, but I enjoy the flavor of vegan cheese much better that way.
And no, it doesn’t melt quite the same as regular cheese does, but it does brown up a bit and make the flavor of the cheese toastier.
Yep, I said toastier. That’s right. That’s how I’m choosing to describe it. And I know you get me. Right? Anyway, here’s the recipe for ya…both ways so we can suffer together or not.
- 3 medium spaghetti squash
- 1 1/2 cups part skim or nonfat ricotta cheese
- 3/4 cup parmesan cheese
- (Alternatively use 2 1/4 cup vegan mozzarella shreds to make this dairy free)
- 4 1/2 cups meat sauce, recipe follows
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 lb chicken sausage, preferrably spicy
- 1/2 large yellow onion - diced
- 4 cloves garlic - minced
- 28oz can diced fire roasted tomatoes
- 15 oz can tomato sauce
- 1 cup dry red wine
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp basil
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- Salt & Pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Split each squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Lay cut side down in a casserole dish or high sided roasting pan. Pour in 1-2 inches of water. Bake for 30-45 mins or until just done. They should yield to a fork, but you don't want them overly soft. Remove from the oven and set aside.
In a large saucepan (we use our dutch oven) saute onion on med-high heat until soft and translucent, about 3-5 minutes.
Note: I add the salt & pepper throughout the next few stages a little at a time (season as you go)
Add garlic, cook for an additional minute.
Add sausage, breaking it up into small chunks. Saute until it begins to brown and is cooked through, about 7-10 minutes.
Pour in red wine to deglaze the pan, scraping up all of the bits off the bottom of the pot.
Add remaining ingredients and simmer over low heat for about 30-45 minutes.
Using a fork, gently scrape the squash "noodles" out of one of the squash halves leaving a 1/4 inch rim around the edges and bottom. Set "noodles" in a bowl. Add 1/2 cup of sauce and 1/4 cup ricotta. Stir gently just to combine. Fold back into the empty squash boat. Top with 1/4 cup more sauce and 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese. Repeat with remaining squash halves.
To make the dairy free version, combine the squash "noodles with 1/2 cup of sauce and 1/4 cup of vegan mozzarella shreds. Stir gently to combine. Fold back into empty squash boat. Top with 1/4 cup more sauce and 1-2 tablespoons of vegan mozzarella shreds.
Bake for 15-20 minutes until the cheese is melted and beginning to brown.
Hope you enjoy! Let us know if you made it and what you think. Tag pics on instagram with #kandradventures and follow us @kandradventures