Spaghetti Squash Bolognese
Nov 11, 2020
By Health Coach Melanie Rathbun, FMCHC
It’s Spaghetti Squash Time!
Squashes are mainly autumn and winter harvest vegetables. Many squashes can be cooked by baking, boiling or steaming, for a nutritious meal and they can be quite versatile for a variety of recipes.
Spaghetti squash are naturally low in carbohydrates and calories and are nutrient dense making it a great alternative to noodles and rice. It is packed with antioxidants which can help fight free radicals, thus preventing oxidative stress and reducing damage to your cells. Research shows that antioxidants from food sources may aid in preventing chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes and cancer, and are recommended in the diet. They are also a good source of vitamin C, manganese, Vitamin A, folate, beta-carotene and vitamin B6.
Squashes are also high in fiber which can benefit several aspects of digestive health. Fiber moves slowly through your digestive system, adding bulk to your stool, which promotes regularity and alleviates constipation.
We’ve included a gluten free and paleo seasonal recipe for you to try using spaghetti squash. Upgrade to a healthier option with this spaghetti and bolognese alternative. A perfect dinner option that’s easy to prepare!
Slow Cooker Bolognese with Spaghetti Squash
Cooking time 8 hours (serves 4)
- 1 1/2 tsps. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 lb Extra Lean Ground Turkey
- 1 Yellow Onion (diced)
- 5 Garlic (cloves, minced)
- 3 cups Diced Tomatoes (drained)
- 3 cups Crushed Tomatoes
- 3 Bay Leaf
- 1 tsp Oregano
- 1 medium to large Spaghetti Squash
- 1/2 cup Basil Leaves (chopped)
- 1 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add ground turkey, onion and garlic. Cook while breaking up the pieces with a spatula until browned. Transfer to your slow cooker. Add diced tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, bay leaves and oregano. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.
- About 1 hour before you are ready to eat, preheat the oven to 400. Carefully slice your spaghetti squash in half. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and discard.
- Place the squash on a greased baking sheet with the flesh side up. Bake in the oven for 30 to 45 minutes depending on the size of the squash.
- Remove from the oven and allow it to cool until it is safe to handle. Use a fork to carve the flesh out of the squash. It should come out like spaghetti noodles. Place the flesh in a large mixing bowl and toss with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, chopped basil and season with sea salt and pepper to taste.
- Remove the bay leaves from the slow cooker. Plate spaghetti squash and spoon bolognese sauce over top. Garnish with fresh ground pepper and red pepper flakes if you like it spicy. Enjoy!
- More Vegetables: Add diced green pepper, spinach and mushrooms.
- Vegetarian: Use lentils instead of ground turkey.
- More Carbs: Use brown rice pasta instead of spaghetti squash.
- Dairy free: Top with Nutritional yeast as a “cheesy” topping
- No Slow Cooker: Make it on the stovetop and let it simmer for at least an hour.
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