I’ve been in need of some good ole’ comfort meal for these chilly fall nights we’re having here in Chicago. Something hearty, filling, and warm that just kind of sticks to your sides as it goes down.. but in a good way. Needless to say.. spaghetti and meatballs just seemed to be calling my name. It’s a classic comfort food that fills you up so easily and keeps you satisfied. However, I decided to opt for something a little healthier… Spaghetti squash! I’ve been all about the roasted spaghetti squash this season as a gluten-free way to have my “pasta” and eat it too! But this homemade meat sauce just took it to another level. All the flavors of spaghetti and meatballs, but just in a slightly healthier (and easier!) form.
I love chunky sauce. Especially if it has big pieces of meat in it! I just prefer to actually see the tomato, the onion, the pieces of meat all in my sauce, rather than in pureed form. I seriously might even have dreams about this sauce. Yum yum in my tum! I used italian sausage in this recipe, but you can of course swap it out with some beef or even some ground chicken or turkey for a leaner sauce (or hey! why not mushrooms for a vegan recipe!). It would taste great all those ways too! While this may be a quick sauce with no simmering on the stove for hours on end, it is extremely flavorful and tasty. If you’re looking for a satisfying meal that won’t put you into carb overload.. this spaghetti squash with meat sauce is definitely for you!
I believe it was Beyonce who once said “If you liked it then you shoulda put some meat sauce on it” or something like that. I’m with you Queen Bey. I’m with you.
- 1 (2 lb) spaghetti squash (see my tutorial on how to roast spaghetti squash here)
- 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
- ½ medium onion, diced (about 1 cup)
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- ½ lb. italian sausage
- 1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes (or about 2 cups diced tomatoes)
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried basil
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp ground pepper
- Preheat oven to 400F. Slice squash vertically right down the middle from stem to tail. With a spoon, scoop out the seeds from the middle. Drizzle the insides of the squash with one tablespoon of olive oil and place the squash flesh side down in a 9x13 inch baking pan. Bake at 400F for 30 to 45 minutes, until the flesh is tender. If the squash is still a little hard, put it back in the oven for another 5-10 minutes. With a fork, scrape the inside of the squash, separating the flesh into spaghetti-like strands.
- In the meantime, while the squash is roasting, prepare the meat sauce. Preheat one tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the italian sausage and cook until browned,about 5-7 minutes. Then, add in the onions and minced garlic and cook an additional 3-5 minutes, until the onions are translucent and fragrant. Add the diced tomatoes, spices, salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cover with a lid, cooking for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste and adjust seasoning to your liking.
- Serve over cooked spaghetti squash.