One of my favorite comfort foods is baked spaghetti! I really loved this lighter and healthier version, made with spaghetti squash instead of traditional spaghetti noodles. I mixed in ricotta cheese for creaminess, and added extra veggies as well. This is so rich and cheesy, you will not be missing a thing except the extra carbs! Use your favorite spaghetti sauce for a quicker way to a healthy family favorite!
Here's what you need:
1 medium spaghetti squash, cut in half and seeded
About 1/2 t salt, divided
1 T Italian seasoning
1 lb lean ground beef (or turkey)
2 t olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves,minced
1 jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce
1 cup reduced fat ricotta cheese
1 cup chopped fresh spinach
1/2 cup chopped roma or cherry tomatoes
1 cup mozzarella cheese
Preheat the oven to 350. Take the halved and seeded spaghetti squash and place both halves on a microwave safe plate, cut side down. Microwave about 15 minutes and allow it to cool a little. You will need two skillets. In each skillet add 1 t of the oil. Chop the onion and divide half in each skillet and saute the onion in each one. Add one minced garlic clove to each skillet. Saute until the onion is soft. In one skillet, add the ground beef, and saute until it is browned. Drain any excess fat. Season the beef with half of the salt and the Italian seasoning. Lastly, stir in the spaghetti sauce and the chopped tomatoes and allow to simmer on low.
In the other skillet, add the cup of ricotta cheese and the chopped fresh spinach. Stir for a minute to melt. Add the rest of the salt. Remove from the heat.
Now, take the microwaved spaghetti squash and using a fork, separate strands of spaghetti squash, adding them all to the ricotta, spinach mixture.
In a greased baking dish, add the spaghetti squash mixture. Top it with the meat sauce. Sprinkle the top with mozzarella. Bake at 350 about 30 minutes and allow it to rest about 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!