I love replacing pasta with spaghetti squash. 1 cup of pasta is approximately 220 calories, 42 grams of carbohydrates, and has very few nutrients compared to 1 cup of spaghetti squash has about 42 calories, 10 grams of carbohydrates, and several nutrients, including vitamin A and potassium. I always look for healthier options for foods and will easily substitute ingredients to make our meals healthier and with fewer calories. Spaghetti squash is easy to substitute, essentially you can use it in replace of pasta, so with fewer calories and more nutrients, why wouldn’t you?
If you’ve never made spaghetti squash before, the thought of substituting it in replace of pasta may seems bizarre. However, once cooked, you can fork out the inside and it looks like thin translucent strands of thin spaghetti, hence the name!
This recipe is a great change up from the classic pasta substitute and is loaded with veggies and nutrients, so why not try it??? I made this recipe for one of my girlfriends who just had a baby. I wanted her to have something healthy, nutritious, and if she wanted, she could easily store it in the freezer for later. It was awesome and definitely a recipe you need to try!
Preheat oven to 375 °F and line cookie sheet with tin foil for easy clean-up. Most likely you'll need at least two cookie sheets.
Wash the squash. Using sharp knife, poke a few small slits in the squash skin, forming a dotted line along where you plan to slice squash in half.
Microwave for approximately 5 minutes to soften the squash.
Place squash on cutting board. Cut the stem off and with flat side down, cut along your 'dotted - line' to slice squash in half. (Squash may be hot so use a towel or oven mitt to help hold squash). If squash is still to hard to cut, put in microwave for another couple of minutes.
Scrape out the seeds of each of the squash halves.
Drizzle and rub olive oil on the inside of squash and lightly salt and pepper.
Place squash cut side down on the foiled cookie sheets. Roast in oven for about 35-45 minutes at 375º.
Meanwhile, sauté onions and bell pepper in large pan over medium heat for about 6-7 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
In medium mixing bowl, combine onions, black beans, bell pepper, tomato sauce, and 1/2 cup shredded cheese. Set aside.
Once squash has finished cooking, allow it to cool for a few minutes or use your hot mitts to handle the squash because it will be hot! Use a fork to scoop and scrape the sides of the squash. If you're planning on serving it in the spaghetti squash "bowl" be sure to do this gently, as it easily tears (hence my picture) or only scrape about 3/4 of the inside out.
Mix squash with the rest of the ingredients and scoop into your 'bowls.' Top with remaining shredded cheese.
Broil in oven for about 5 minutes until the cheese starts to bubble and turns golden brown.