What is more comforting than a bowl of warm pasta on a rainy day? I don’t think the sun ever broke through the clouds yesterday and the last thing I wanted to do after a long day at work was stop and pick up groceries on the way home. Call me lazy but I just wasn’t going to get out of my car until it was parked in my own driveway.
Luckily, I had already purchased two beautiful spaghetti squash which were sitting on my counter waiting for me. I knew I had sauce in the cabinet and cheese in the fridge. Magic! Dinner!
If you haven’t jumped onto the squash as the new pasta bandwagon, don’t hesitate one more day. I really had a hard time wrapping my head around it too. I’ve never been much of a squash fan in the first place. I was worried about the texture and especially worried about the strong squash taste ruining my pasta experience. Spaghetti squash has a milder flavor and while the texture isn’t exactly like al dente pasta, it’s pretty darn close…close enough for me. My husband, who is 100% Italian and was raised on pasta agrees with me. I’ve fed it to him twice now with absolutely no complaints. There’s also no guilt about having a second bowl. Have I convinced you yet?
The first time I tried the spaghetti squash, I was apprehensive and kind of felt like I wanted to get the experiment over with so I just cooked the squash and then threw on some sauce for Frank and some butter with cheese for Hayley. After seeing them empty their bowls, I knew I was on to something. Now Frank is pretty agreeable when it comes to food and something would have to be pretty gross for him not to finish it, but Hayley is just plain picky and would barely finish one bite if she didn’t like it. She doesn’t fake it at all, which makes her a sometimes annoying, yet effective taste tester.
This time I wanted to do something a little different and decided to bake it. It was satisfying and filling without giving us the bloat we usually get from regular pasta. As I wrote this post, it was several hours after dinner and I had absolutely no bad response…not a single rumbly protestation from my tummy. That means a better night’s sleep too.
Do you have a favorite spaghetti squash recipe? I’m hoping to find a few to try out.
Here’s the printable. Get ready for your bowl of happiness.
- 2 spaghetti squash, halved with the seeds scooped out
- 1 jar of marinara (check label to make sure there is no added sugar)
- 1½ cups of grated Parmesan cheese
- ½ cups of grated Parmesan or other cheese for the top
- 1 tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tbsp. dried basil
- 1 tbsp. dried oregano
- salt and pepper to taste
- drizzle of olive oil
- Put one inch of water into a baking dish.
- Place the halved and deseeded squash cut side down onto the rimmed baking dish with the water.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.
- Use a kitchen towel to hold each half of the squash while you scrape out the spaghetti with a fork.
- After all of the spaghetti is in a bowl, add in 1½ cups of Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper and the dried seasonings.
- Next add in a jar of sauce.
- Put the mixture into a baking dish that has been sprayed with olive oil to prevent any sticking.
- Sprinkle on the remaining ½ cup of cheese on the top. You can substitute whatever cheese you like instead of the Parmesan.
- Bake in a 400 degree oven until bubbly and slightly browned.