I am nearly thirty-years-old, and I had never truly even heard of such thing as “spaghetti squash” until the last year or so. I’ve never really liked other kinds of squash (summer squash, butternut, etc)., but after several friends insisted that spaghetti squash “noodles” were just as good as regular spaghetti noodles, I decided to give it a try. I was a little overwhelmed by all the different ways to fix spaghetti squash, but I decided to whip up a marinara sauce, make some turkey meatballs, and see how it all turned out.
Spaghetti Squash “Noodles” Recipe Ingredients
- one large spaghetti squash
- three large cans of Hunts crushed tomatoes (I chose the cans with basil for extra flavor)
- three cloves minced garlic (or three large tablespoons)
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
- 2 tbsp Basil
- 2 tbsp Oregano
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 3/4 cup grated Parmesan
Turkey Meatball Ingredients
- 1 lb ground turkey (I used 99% lean and it was a little too lean; 85% would be much better)
- 1 raw egg white
- 1/2 cup Italian Panko breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
- 2 tbsp dried Parsley flakes
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground thyme, optional
Cut squash in half, length-wise.
Reminds you of a pumpkin, huh? In pumpkin fashion, remove seeds and pulp. I used my hands, but next time I do believe I will use the scraper I use on my pumpkins at Halloween because I didn’t feel like I scraped it enough.
See? Still a little too pulpy. Anyway, lay cut side down on greased cookie sheet and bake in the oven at 375 for about 45 minutes.
In the meantime, prepare marinara by heating olive oil in a medium sauce pan. Place garlic and herbs in hot oil and stir for about a minute.
Add crushed tomatoes, pepper, and sugar, stirring well.
Cover and simmer on low for around 2 hours, stirring occasionally. After two hours, add grated Parmesan. At this point, I gave the sauce a taste, and felt it needed something. I added some of my trusty Tony Chachere’s cajun seasoning until I was satisfied, but you could add some salt and pepper to taste. Stir well and let rest while you prepare meatballs.
For meatballs, place all ingredients in a mixing bowl.
Mix well with your hands until all ingredients are evenly incorporated. Roll into golf-sized balls and place on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes OR at 375 for 30 minutes as I did since I was kind of in a hurry at this point.
While meatballs are baking, turn spaghetti squash over and begin to scrape with a fork. I was amazed at how easily the “noodles” came out!
It took a while to scrape both halves out into a large bowl, but I was able to get about 6-8 cups of noodles out.
When I first tasted the squash alone, I was a little leery of pretending it was actual spaghetti. But with some sauce and a dusting of Parmesan, I really didn’t notice much difference! I happily ate a large plateful. The turkey meatballs were flavorful but a little dry due to the extreme leanness of the meat. However, overall, Mister Spice and I give this 3.5 out of 5 herbs. It was a lot of work, but it was nice knowing we were eating a very healthy, flavorful meal.