Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Spicy Turkey Sausage Marinara
This meal is an FLF favorite, loved by our clients and their spouses and Littles. It's comforting and familiar - who doesn't love a spaghetti dinner? - without being heavy and coma-inducing.
The spaghetti squash is a Fat Loss Foodie go-to vegetable, especially in colder months when we all get the hankering for pasta dishes with meat and cheese and heavier casseroles that don't necessarily fit our goals.
A cup of cooked spaghetti squash has only around 30-40 calories and around 7-8 grams of carbs (2 grams are from fiber).
One cup of regular spaghetti made from flour:
220 calories and 43 grams of carbs (2.5 from fiber)
The spaghetti squash is a clear winner!
How to Roast Spaghetti Squash
Good news: no squash hacking or sawing necessary! You can roast the squash whole and cut it after it’s cooked. No fingers will be lost in the cooking of this squash.
Just pierce a whole squash a few times with a paring knife and roast it whole in a small baking dish at 375 degrees. Set a timer for 40 minutes, flip the squash upside down and roast it for another 35-40 minutes, or until you can pierce it easily with a paring knife.
If you have an Instant Pot, you can use that too! Detoxinista has a great step-by-step guide HERE.
The real fun is scooping the strands of noodle-like squash out with a fork after it's roasted and cooled!
1 whole spaghetti squash, roasted or pressure cooked
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes (more or less to taste)
1/4 tsp. sea salt
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 28-oz. can of tomato sauce
zest of one lemon
1 lb. of spicy turkey sausage, casings removed, and browned
Optional: Use 1/2 a pound of ground turkey and 1/2 a pound of turkey sausage
1. In a large pan over medium high heat, add ground turkey and cook until browned, breaking it up with a wooden spoon as it cooks. Remove from heat and set aside.
2. Into a cold saucepan, add olive oil, red pepper flakes, sea salt and garlic. Place the pan on the stove and turn the heat to medium high. Stir the olive oil mixture and cook until fragrant, about 45 seconds to 1 minute. (Note: You don’t want the garlic to brown.)
2. To the olive oil-garlic-spice mixture, add tomato sauce and stir, cooking until heated through. Remove from heat. Add salt & pepper to taste. Stir in the lemon zest.
3. Combine tomato sauce and cooked turkey sausage. Serve over roasted spaghetti squash. Top with freshly chopped Italian parsley and a shaving of fresh Parmesan cheese.
FAT LOSS FOODIE TIP
I typically use Trader Joe's turkey sausage in this dish, but use what you can find. It's much leaner than pork sausage. If you’re short on time and need a topping for your roasted spaghetti squash, grab a jarred sauce that is low in sugar. My favorite is Trader Joe’s Tomato Basil Marinara. Whatever you do, don’t skip the lemon zest, even if you use a bottle sauce. It may sound strange, but it makes the sauce!