Real Recipe: Cheesy Spaghetti Squash and Spinach Bake

spaghetti_squash

Friday night and no football. Well at least not for me (the bf ended his season last week, and is out on the town watching a friend’s game). Me? I’m at home. Making a vegetarian dinner, watching Diners, Drive-In’s and Dives, and drinking wine. Perfect. Friday. Night. Especially now that the weather’s cooled down and it’s the beginning of that I-can’t-be-bothered-to-leave-the-couch-and-go-outside season.

I’ve been dying to try this Spaghetti Squash Bake all week. With a birthday dinner on Monday, conferences till late on Tuesday (which meant Chinese take-out from our fav msg-free place!), date night Wednesday (we grilled whole Snapper for the first time), annnnd the soccer state championship for the boys last night, there just hasn’t been time. So toniiiight is the niiiiight (cue Spice Girls song!)…

…when two squash become one…

In a bake. :)

Yes, I laugh at my own jokes (just ask the bf).

Anyway, I got this idea from my ‘ol college buddy Nikki at Grab Your Kicks. Love following her blog and all of her great ideas!

And she got the idea from Skinnytaste, which is where I adapted this recipe from.

Disclaimer: I have never used spaghetti squash before (butternut yes, spaghetti no). Every time I make squash, I remember how much dang work it is. Cutting it open is the first challenge. I work the knife slowly but surely around the squash until I can use the knife as a lever and crack that baby open!

Then you have to de-seed them (and yes, this is mandatory!).

And then, after you’ve labored your way through that, you can finally bake. At 375 degrees. For about 1 hour.

It’s worth it. Trust me.

At first I was hesitant. Squash with cheese? Weird. Or so I thought. As I read on another blogger’s post regarding substituting noodles with spaghetti squash: Will it curb your craving for pasta? Probably not. Will you think it’s delicious and make it again? I think so. At least, that’s what I’m doing!

Creamy, healthy, and delicious. Try it for yourself!

Spaghetti Squash and Spinach Bake

Ingredients:

2 small spaghetti squash (makes about 5 1/2 cups)

1 small onion, diced

4 TBSP butter

2 TBSP flour (substitute arrowroot powder or corn starch for gf)

5 oz baby spinach leaves (about 4 cups)

1/2 cup organic cream

2 cups organic milk (I use whole)

1 cup organic cheddar cheese, grated

1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated

Panko bread crumbs (or gf bread crumbs) – optional

salt and pepper, to taste

Directions: 

1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

2) Slice squash lengthwise. De-seed.

3) Bake on baking sheet for approx. 1 hour or until fork inserts with ease. Let cool slightly. Shred with fork until you have your spaghetti! Discard shells. Maintain oven temperature.

4) Meanwhile, melt butter in medium saucepan. Saute onions over medium heat until soft.

5) Add in flour. Lower heat. Stir continuously for 2-3 minutes to make a roux.

6) Add in cream and milk. Turn up heat to start a boil, reduce to simmer. Stir frequently until sauce reaches desired consistency.

7) Fold in squash and spinach. Sprinkle parmesan over. Top with breadcrumbs if desired.

8) Transfer to baking dish. Bake at 375 degrees for about 25 minutes or until bubbling and browning on top!

9) Enjoy :)

spaghetti_squash

 

Real Recipe: Cheesy Spaghetti Squash and Spinach Bake
 
Delicious and creamy Spaghetti Squash and Spinach Bake. A great way to eat your veggies!
Ingredients
  • 2 small spaghetti squash (makes about 5½ cups)
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 4 TBSP butter
  • 2 TBSP flour (substitute arrowroot powder or corn starch if gf)
  • 5 oz baby spinach leaves (about 4 cups)
  • ½ cup organic cream
  • 1 cup organic milk
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese, shredded
  • Panko bread crumbs (or gf bread crumbs) - optional
  • salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Slice squash lengthwise. De-seed.
  3. Bake on baking sheet for approx. 1 hour or until fork inserts with ease. Let cool slightly. Shred with fork until you have your spaghetti! Discard shells. Maintain oven temperature.
  4. Meanwhile, melt butter in medium saucepan. Saute onions over medium heat until soft.
  5. Add in flour. Lower heat. Stir continuously for 2-3 minutes to make roux.
  6. Add in cream and milk. Turn up heat to bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer. Stir frequently until sauce reaches desired consistency.
  7. Fold in squash and spinach. Top with parmesan cheese and breadcrumbs if desired.
  8. Transfer to baking dish. Bake at 375 degrees for about 25 minutes or until bubbling and browning on top!
  9. Enjoy :)