I remember when I first tried Spaghetti Squash. I was just starting to experiment with other types of vegetables. For most of my life I considered corn one of my favorite vegetables :). I roasted it up according to direction (almost breaking my knife cutting it in half because I didn’t know the trick of microwaving first to soften..) I served it with a basic bolognese sauce and I remember thinking “this does not taste like pasta.” But, that’s okay. I liked the mild flavor and most importantly, it was a great vehicle to eat the sauce. Because, heck, I’ll eat a good sauce with just a spoon.
Now, I always have a spaghetti squash on hand. Perfect for days when I want a filling meal with a yummy sauce. And this recipe is no exception. Pair with your current taco toppings (i’m partial to some avocado) and you’ve got a simple, filling, healthy meal.
- 1 spaghetti squash (3–4 lbs)
- 1 lb lean ground beef (can sub ground turkey or chicken)
- 1 white onion (diced)
- 1 bell pepper (diced, color of choice)
- 1 jalepeno (seeded and minced)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 14-oz cans diced tomatoes (or 1 28-oz can)
- 1 4.5oz can diced green chiles
- salt and pepper (to taste)
- avocado, salsa, sour cream, mexican cheese (optional for topping)
- Preheat the oven to 400° F. Pierce the spaghetti squash with a fork and microwave for 5 minutes (this helps soften the squash so it is easier to cut in half). Allow the squash to cool slightly so it is safe to handle, then cut in half lengthwise. Be very careful doing this. Scoop out the seeds and pulp from the middle. Drizzle squash halves with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes to an hour.
- While the squash is roasting, make the filling. Heat a large saute pan to medium-high heat. Drizzle with olive oil or vegetable and add the ground beef. Break up beef with a spatula and cook until browned. Removed browned, crumbled beef from the skillet and set aside. Depending on the amount of fat left in the pan, you can drain some of the fat or add more oil if needed. Add the onions, pepper, and jalepeno to the pan.
- Saute until the vegetables are soft and slightly browned (about 5 minutes). Add in the minced garlic and cook for 1 minute until it becomes fragrant. Add in the spices and stir to combine. Add the tomatoes and diced green chiles. Simmer for 5 minutes. Stir the ground beef back into the skillet and allow to simmer until the spaghetti squash is done roasting. The tomato juices will slightly cook off and thicken.
- When the spaghetti squash is finished roast, it will be slightly browned and tender. Shred the squash with a fork and add to the pan. Toss to combine.
- Serve with toppings and sides of your choice.
If you have taco seasoning on hand, feel free to sub a packet or about two tablespoons for the spices.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 50 minutes
- Category: Main Dish
- Cuisine: Mexican