Italian Stuffed Spaghetti Squash

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Italian stuffed Spaghetti Squash; easy, delicious, and healthy!

Today, we were snowed in to 18″ and it was fantastic!  FINALLY, winter is here and I don’t mind one bit because this chick skis now!  BRING ON THE DRIFTS!  In this weather, this is when comfort food cravings REALLY set in.  But, because I have committed to myself and my family that we will remain healthy and trim, I resisted the urge to cook a traditional baked penne, which is what Jim and Rusty REALLY wanted.  Low glycemic impact eating is a lifestyle, not a passing trend or diet and one of the components of it is behavior modification.  And because the larger part of our day included a bunch of study time (Kinesiology is pretty tough), Star Wars WII games, and tv show watching with not tooooooo much physical activity I decided I was going to keep my nutritional healthy commitment to me and mine!  There IS a happy medium between comfort food and healthy food.  Tonight my fridge had organic ground beef and my pantry had an organic spaghetti squash, and organic yellow onions.  I also had garlic,  celery, italian spices and a delicious jar of marina sauce by Victoria’s.  And some salad fixings.  And mozzarella and ricotta.  So I decided to make my family a delicious and HEALTHY low-glycemic Italian dish.  It was a much needed snow day hit and it satisfied everyone!  It was FILLING, it was HEALTHY; chock full of protein and veggies!  The added antioxidants my red beverage provided were a bonus-the wine was a delicious Argentina treasure.  Yeah yeah the dish was Italian-but I had Malbec in my house. It complemented the squash beautifully!  I kept the dish simple and did not go too elaborate on the spices-I had a jar of minced garlic available of which I used two tablespoons, and I had a container of Italian spices in my pantry which I took advantage of.  I did have fresh basil on my windowsill for garnish, but I used it as a garnish and dried would have been perfectly fine, especially this time of year.  My version of the dish calls for a TINY ricotta, and those who need dairy free can easily leave it out for the same delicious effect.  Same with the bread crumbs-those who need gluten free can just simply leave out the bread crumbs.  This was easy to make and was devoured with delight by the two men I was aiming to please!  (one aged 50 and one aged 8).

Italian Stuffed Spaghetti Squash

Ingredients

  • 1 large Spaghetti Squash (Organic if available)
  • 1 lb of ground beef (Organic if available
  • 1 Jar of Marinara Sauce (I used Victoria’s tomato basil
  • 1 large onion chopped finely
  • 2 celery stalks chopped very finely
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons beef broth
  • 1/4 cup ricotta
  • 1/4 cup shredded or grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1 egg, or 2 small eggs
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs (optional, but add a yummy consistenc and taste)
  • Italian Seasonings to taste
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. preheat oven to 400 degrees F
  2. Slice Spaghetti squash in half and scoop out seeds
  3. Place upside down in a baking dish with an inch of water. (I boil the water ahead of time to speed it up
  4. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until soft but not mushy. (I did 30 minutes
  5. Scoop out the cooked squash into a mixing bowl, save the shells
  6. Meanwhile, saute up the chopped celery and onion and minced garlic with the ground beef
  7. When browned, add the two tablespoons of beef broth and reduce
  8. Add the beef mixture to the mixing bowl with the squash
  9. Add all other ingredients to the mixture and blend gently with a spoon until completely incorporated.
  10. Spoon mixture back into the reserved squash shells and place back into the baking dish.
  11. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F
  12. Pour more of the Victoria’s marinara sauce over the stuffed squash shells
  13. Bake for 25 minutes or until bubbling
  14. Take out of the oven, sprinkle with some extra mozzarella cheese and place back in the oven until mozzarella is melted, about an other 5-10 minutes.a
  15. Serve with salad and ENJOY
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