Eating healthier doesn’t have to be boring or taste bad! Around Nov. 2018 I started trying to heal myself from the inside out to see how my diet choices affected my mental health, and the results were ASTOUNDING. I cut out foods that were high in salt and sugar and integrated ones that were good for anxiety and depression (a ton of fruits and veggies). About a month or two later I was happy all the time and practically anxiety-free! The hardest thing to cut out of my diet was gluten. Specifically pasta. It tore my gut up, but MAN. Was. It. Good. So I decided to do a little research and discovered things like spaghetti squash and zucchini noodles as a substitute for spaghetti. I’m here today to show you one of my favorite of those substitutes–spaghetti squash!
It’s low in fat, high in fiber, manganese, potassium, and many other nutrients your body needs to function properly. I.e. it tastes amazing AND it’s healthy. Just what I like to hear.
It’s takes about 1.5 hours to make (just for me personally, because I like to take my precious time), but for a flavor far superior to pasta (how dare I?) it’s so so soooo worth it. Feast your eyes.
Here’s how it’s done.
Servings: 2/squash (one squash-half per person). Arguably 4 though; it’s so filling.
Oven time: 40 minutes
Total time: roughly 1.5 hrs
What You Need:
- 1 spaghetti squash
- Olive oil
- Crushed basil leaves (to taste)
- Paprika (to taste)
- Sea or Himalayan salt (to taste)
- 4oz ground sausage (veggie sausage is just as good for a vegetarian meal)
- 12oz spaghetti sauce
- Shredded mozzarella cheese
- Grated parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 460 degrees Fahrenheit. Take a sharp knife and cut the spaghetti squash in half length-wise. Scoop out the orange fibers and seeds and throw them away (or bake the seeds for an extra treat). Place the squash halves inside-up on a cookie sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle the salt, basil leaves, and paprika over each half. Once they’re seasoned, turn them upside-down onto a baking sheet. No need to grease it! Put them in the preheated oven and let them cook for about 40 minutes. Now you’ve got some time to kill, but if you wish, you can start the meat sauce. Just brown the meat in a skillet and add the spaghetti sauce in once that’s done. Easy peasy. I put some shredded mozzarella in mine to add some cheesiness.
When you take the squash out, check them by sliding a spatula under and lifting to see if they’re browned. Using your hands to lift from the sides squishes them–they’re super soft when cooked!! They will look like this when they’re done. If they aren’t roasted enough for you, put them back in and keep an eye on them. Now all you have to do is grab a fork and start shredding them! I prefer to go from end to end as it makes longer strings, but there is totally no right or wrong way to do this. Top with the meat sauce and some cheese and you’re good to go!