Mains

Baked Spaghetti Squash Cocottes 

January 29, 2018
Now you can have a low-carb, guilt-free Italian night with with a twist on a classic.  These easy and delicious Spaghetti Squash cocottes will quickly become a new family favorite!!
Last week I had the pleasure of touring Gotham Greens, the largest urban garden in the world spanning two acres.  A group of some of my favorite foodies explored the massive greenhouse and learned so much about these greens and how they’re grown.

The greenhouse produces thirty times the crop yield but only uses one tenth of the water of a traditional soil based farm. They also use zero pesticides, 100% renewable energy, and recycled irrigation water! At the end of the tour, we were able to sample all of the lettuce and herbs they produce.  They have some of the best basil and arugula I’ve ever had.  You can find their greens at Whole Foods, Jewel Osco, Marianos and Peapod! 

 
 
Our group was lucky enough to be able to take lots of greens home, so naturally my mind began racing with all the things I could do with them.  I had some spaghetti squash sitting on my counter top so I made some spaghetti squash bolognese! These were so delicious, my wife couldn’t stop talking about them.  

How can I cook spaghetti squash quickly?

There are a few different ways you can cook this fantastic veggie.  The traditional oven method takes the longest.  You slice squash in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Drizzle halves with the olive oil and season with salt. Place squash cut side down on a baking sheet and roast until tender, 45-50 minutes at 400 degrees.  You can choose to cook it in the microwave by placing squash cut-sides-down in a microwave-safe baking dish. Fill the dish with about 1 inch of water. Microwave on high for about 12 minutes, or until you can easily pierce the squash with a fork.  Finally, if you’ve hopped on the Instapot train, you can cook this squash in just 7 minutes!

 

 

In your Instapot, place a trivet or steamer basket in the bottom of and add a cup of water into the bottom. Arrange the cut squash halves on top of the trivet and secure the lid. Make sure the vent at the top is turned to the “sealed” position. By using the manual button to set the pressure cooker to cook for 7 minutes on high pressure.

When the timer goes off, carefully turn the vent at the top to quickly release the steam and lower the pressure.  Carefully remove the lid, use a fork to check the squash to make sure it’s cooked to your liking. I like my squash to be a little al dente.  If there is water collected in the center of your squash, drain it before serving.

What does spaghetti squash taste like?

It looks like pasta and has a texture like pasta, but it’s still probably not going to fool anyone. The flavor is very mild, with none of that sweet, earthy, squash-like flavor we get with butternut and acorn squash.

What is the easiest way to cut a spaghetti squash?

I like to use a sharp knife to slice this hard squash in half lengthwise. My knife always gets stuck in the hard shell, so when that happens I’ll lift the squash by the knife handle and then hit it on the cutting board, so that the knife will continue the cut through the shell. Once you get most of the shell cut, the rest of the shell can be split in half by pulling the halves apart with your hands.

 
bolognese sauce

After your squash is cooked, combine those stringy squash noodles with this delicious bolognese sauce in mini Staub cocottes, top with freshly grated parmesan, and put under the broiler until the cheese has melted.  Top with some chiffonade basil and dinner is served!

Spaghetti squash bolognese in mini cocottes
 
If you loved this recipe, be sure to check out my healthy chicken bruschetta!
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Baked Spaghetti Squash Cocottes

  • Author: Nicole Triebe
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x

Ingredients

Scale

1 spaghetti squash, cooked

1 pounds ground beef or turkey
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoons ground oregano
A handful of fresh Gotham Green’s basil, torn
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 can stewed tomatoes
1 (15-ounce) cans tomato sauce

Instructions

After the squash is cooked to your liking, remove it from the oven and using a fork, scrape the inside so that stringy “noodles form.”  While the squash is baking, prepare your sauce.

In a large saucepan, saute ground beef until brown, add onion and garlic. Drain excess fat from the pan. Add oregano, salt and pepper. Add the stewed tomatoes and tomato sauce. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 25 minutes.  Add basil at the end. 

In a large bowl, combine spaghetti squash noodles with the Bolognese sauce, toss to coat the noodles evenly.  Scoop enough of the noodles to fill 1/2 of the cocotte.  Layer with 1 tbl mozzarella cheese and repeat.  Top with additional mozzarella and grated Parmesan and stick back in the oven until the cheese has melted.  To get the top layer a nice golden brown, you can stick it under the broiler for a few minutes.  Keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn’t burn!

Notes

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Spaghetti squash bolognese in mini cocottes

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