One of my favorite comfort foods is without a doubt, pasta. Add some perfectly cooked penne noodles to a thick meaty sauce or a creamy pink vodka sauce, cover it with cheese…bada-bing bada-boom! It sounds amazing and will definitely taste amazing too. Now I’m hungry…
Well, though it’s delicious and comforting during those first few bites, this type of dish will often leave me feeling way too full and completely uncomfortable…wait a minute, I thought it was supposed to be “comfort” food?!
SO…today I have a dish for you that will easily leave you feeling comforted and satisfied, without the added calories and fats. I’m bringing back our good ol’ friend spaghetti squash and adding some lean, mean ground turkey and TONS of veggies to the mix!
Spaghetti Squash with Meat & Veggie Tomato Sauce
2 small spaghetti squash (Spaghetti squash cooking directions)
1.5 lbs. lean ground turkey
1 15 oz. can of diced tomatoes
1 15 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 package of button mushrooms, peeled and sliced
1 zucchini, cut into quarter rounds
1 yellow squash, cut into quarter rounds
1 bundle of asparagus, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1/4 cup of freshly chopped basil
1 tbsp. garlic powder
1 tbsp. italian seasoning
1 tsp. dried basil leaves
Salt and pepper layered at each stage of the cooking process
1. Prep all vegetables and cook the spaghetti squash as directed in the link above.
2. In a large sauce pan, heat the olive oil and minced garlic.
3. Add the ground turkey and cook until it’s no longer pink. Sprinkle some salt and pepper during this step.
4. Add all of the vegetables; mushrooms, zucchini, yellow squash and asparagus. Stir until well combined and add some more salt and pepper.
5. Add the cans of diced and crushed tomatoes. Stir until well combined and add some more salt and pepper (I find cans of tomatoes to be very bland, so the more salt and pepper you add during this step, the more flavor you’ll have).
6. Add all of the seasonings and spices and stir well.
7. Bring the entire ground turkey and vegetable mixture to a boil and then reduce heat to low. Let simmer for 15-20 minutes; this will really get the flavors going. Before plating, add the fresh basil leaves and remember to leave a few aside for garnishing.
8. Plate the spaghetti squash and then top with the meat and veggie sauce! This is a very chunky tomato sauce, but that’s how I like it. If you prefer a smoother sauce, feel free to cut up your veggies into smaller pieces!
A few notes:
*I didn’t have tomato paste, but if I were to make this again, I will add about 2 tbsp. of paste to help thicken the sauce. We found it to be a little on the liquid side especially since spaghetti squash doesn’t soak up sauce like regular pasta noodles.
**Enjoy with some fresh parmesan shavings and fresh basil ribbons on top.
***This dish can easily be made into a vegetarian dish! Just leave out the ground turkey and double the amount of veggies!
****We have plenty of leftovers! This recipe can easily serve 5 to 6.
And there you have it! Healthy comfort food that will satisfy your cravings without costing you the calories and fat. Yum!