Spaghetti Squash Parmesan with Vegetable Ragu
Fun and healthy twist on spaghetti and parmesan dishes using spaghetti squash and a hearty vegetable ragu.
- Olive oil
- 1 medium sweet onion, cut into a small dice
- 6 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 red bell pepper, cut into a small dice
- 8 oz mushrooms, sliced thin
- 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
- 24 oz. can low-sodium crushed tomatoes
- 24 oz. can low-sodium diced tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon dry oregano (or fresh if it is available)
- 1/2 teaspoon dry basil (or fresh if it is available)
- 1/4 teaspoon dry thyme
- salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
- 1 large spaghetti squash
- olive oil
- 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 6 oz. bag of fresh organic spinach, chopped
- 1 cup (approx.) shredded mozzarella cheese
- salt and freshly ground salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Carefully slice the squash in half from top to bottom. Remove the seeds with a spoon by scooping them out and lightly scraping the inside of the squash to get it completely seed-free.
- Rub a little olive oil on the inside of the squash and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper. Place cut side down on a lightly oiled baking sheet and bake for about 45 minutes or until tender and slightly golden on the cut sides.
- While the squash cooks, prep the vegetables and make the sauce by heating some olive oil in a dutch oven or stock pot over medium-high heat.
- Sauté the onions for a few minutes, then add the garlic and sauté another minute. Add the sliced mushrooms and chopped bell pepper. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook until the vegetables are softened.
- Stir in the tomato paste and cook one minute. Add the tomatoes, herbs and a little more salt and pepper and red pepper flakes if desired. Bring to a boil and then simmer uncovered for at least 30 minutes, longer if possible so the sauce gets thick.
- When the squash is tender remove it from the oven and run the fork along on the inside so it divides up like spaghetti.
- Turn the oven on to Broil.
- Microwave the spinach for one minute and press out the excess water. Divide up the spinach and parmesan in half and add to each squash half. Add about 1/2 cup of sauce and mix into the squash. Top with a little more sauce and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.
- Place squash under broiler and cook until cheese is melted and starting to brown slightly.
- Depending on the size of the squash and your appetite either cut each half again so they are in quarters or serve as is. Enjoy!
- You can slice the very top and bottom of the squash to make it easier and safer before cutting it in half, or you can microwave the squash for a minute or two (poke a hole in the squash first) to soften it slightly before cutting.
- You can save time by using jarred pasta sauce, but I think that the sauce plays a very important role here, so I prefer to make my own. This recipe actually makes much more sauce than you will need, so I freeze the rest for another use. Make once and eat many more times! I put mine on homemade pizza the next day!
- Make it dairy-free: My daughter does not eat cheese, so I made hers without the parmesan and mozzarella and it was still very delicious.
https://healthyseasonalcooking.wordpress.com February 24, 2018