I have a confession to make. I am a huge fan of meal prep but I’m not a consistent meal prepper. Well I shouldn’t say that. I consistently make meals for the week but I also consistently get bored half way through the week and end up making something else.I’m getting better at making smaller meals and having more variety so I don’t get bored. Every once in a while though a recipe comes along thats so good I could eat it every day for a month. This is that recipe.
I love lasagna but I only make it once maybe twice a year. Probably because I have been known to eat it for every meal until its gone. This is an issue for a couple reasons 1) no one should eat that much lasagna 2) I’ve been attempting to eat a lower carb diet. The low carb thing throws a wrench in my love for lasagna. I mean without the noodles lasagna is really just cheese and meat sauce. This is where the hero of the squash family and my favourite low carb pasta option comes in. Spaghetti Squash to the rescue!
Now if you’ve never made spaghetti squash before you might be a bit intimidated to try it. Don’t worry I was too the first time I made it. Once I was done I couldn’t believe how easy it was. Follow the steps below and soon you’ll be on the spaghetti squash train.
First cut your squash in half length wise but be careful these beauties are hard to cut. I promise they are worth the effort. Next scoop out the insides just like you would with any other squash. Once you’ve done that put the halves on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Give the insides a generous olive oil bath and then salt and pepper. Now throw them in a preheated oven at 350. Depending on the size of your squash it should take between 45 minutes to a hour to cook.
While your squash is baking you can put the sauce together. First chop a medium onion and 2 cloves of garlic, throw them in a large pot with a tablespoon of butter. Let that simmer a bit and chop a bell pepper, the colour is up to you. I prefer green peppers but I had an orange one so thats what I used. Let that all cook down. Then add your ground meat. You can use your preferred meat I like to use ground beef and ground pork. Once that is almost cooked throw in your spices. When your meat is cooked add the tomato sauce, let it simmer until your squash is done. Give it a good stir every once in a while so it doesn’t stick to the bottom.
When your squash is done take it out of the oven and let it cool for about 10 minutes.
Once your squash is cooled you can shred it with a fork. Be careful it is still hot. I usually hold the squash with an oven mitt on one hand. Pull the squash apart by pulling your fork side to side. Now you can layer your lasagna. I like to do noodles or in this case squash, cheese, meet sauce, cheese and then repeat.
As you can see above I forgot to take a picture of the meat layer, oops. Once you’ve finished your layers cover your pan and put it in the oven at 350 for about an hour. Take the cover off and let it bake for a few more minutes to crisp up the cheese. It should look something like this.
I grossly underestimated how much food this recipe would make. I easily could have used my usual lasagna pan (9×11 glass baking dish). When I think about it now, of course I could have used my usual pan, I used my regular recipe I only changed the pasta. Some times I use all of my critical thinking skills at work. Oh well it worked out in the end I had one for my work week lunches and I was able to give one to my official taste tester.
My kitchen helpers were mysteriously missing while I made this so I’ll satisfy the cuteness component by sharing one of my favourite photos of Sophie cat.
This recipe makes about 8 2 cup servings and takes 2ish hours to make including prep time.
What you’ll need
2 Tbs salt plus some for the squash
1 Tbs pepper plus some for the squash
2 Tbs itallian spices
1 tsp garlic
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp parsley
2 cloves garlic
1 Tbs butter
3 cups mozzarella
1/4 cup ricotta
1/4 cup cottage cheese
1 tin tomato sauce (680ml or 23 oz)
1 lb ground pork
1 lb ground beef
1 medium spaghetti squash
1 medium onion
1 medium bell pepper
Cut the squash length wise, scoop out the seeds. Coat with olive oil, cover with salt and pepper. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
For the sauce chop the onion and garlic. Sauté in a large pot with butter. Chop the pepper, add to the pot. Let that cook down then add the ground beef and pork. When the meat is almost cooked add the spices. Allow to cook fully. Add the tomato sauce. Let simmer while the squash cooks.
Remove squash from oven. Let cool for 10 minutes. Scrape squash out of the shell by pulling a fork side to side. Use an oven mitt to steady the squash while you scrape.
Mix the cottage and ricotta cheese together.
Grease a 9×11 baking pan with olive oil.
Layer squash, mozzarella cheese, sauce, cottage and ricotta cheese mixture and mozzarella. Repeat. On the final layer finish with sauce and top with mozzarella. Cover and bake on 350 for about 1 hour. Remove cover and bake for another 10 minutes to crisp cheese.
Until next time,