This vegetarian bake is so simple yet so tasty. A great dish for Meatless Monday or to enjoy a low fat comfort food. You can serve this either as a main dish or a side dish.
This recipe is from an amazing cook book called True Food. This is one of my absolute favorite cookbooks. I followed the directions to a T but ended up adding more zucchini and more onions than called for. I like my meals chock full of veggies.
The steps were very easy. First poke holes in your spaghetti squash and microwave for 10 – 12 minutes, rotating every 3 minutes. When the outside is soft enough to poke a knife easily into, she’s done.
While your squash is cooking, you can caramelize the onions. Easy peazy. Just slice em, heat some oil and saute on medium for about 25 minutes until nice and browned up and soft. I ended up making way more onions than the recipe called so I could use them for other recipes like to top my veggies burgers with.
While your onions are cooking and spaghetti squash is cooling, shred your zucchini. Make sure to squeeze out the water. I use doubled up paper towels and squeeze out the water and repeat 3 times to make sure I got out as much water as possible. Otherwise your bake will come out on the watery side.
Then just mix everything together including the tomato sauce but not the cheese and bake for 40 – 45 minutes.
Once it’s baked, crank up the stove to broil. Top your veggies with cheeses and broil for 3 minutes. The top should be nice and browned.
All done and all yum! I could easily eat the whole pan. The leftovers are even better tasting!
Spaghetti Squash and Zucchini Parmesan Bake - Gluten Free, Vegetarian
1 small sweet onion, sliced thin (about a ½ cup cooked)
2 or 3 medium zucchini, shredded and squeezed to remove water
1 cup tomato sauce
¼ cup grated parmasen
4 ounces shredded mozzarella
1 - 2 olive oil
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Poke holes all over the spaghetti squash, place a microwave safe plate and microwave on high for 12 minutes, rotating every 3 minutes. Once done, remove from microwave and let cool before cutting. Once cooled enough to handle, slice in half lengthwise. I find it easier to slice if I cut off the hard knob first. Once sliced, discard seeds and rake the "spaghetti" with a fork. Place "spaghetti" in a large bowl.
While the squash is cooking, prepare the caramelized onions. In a large pan, heat oil and add sliced onions. Cook on medium/high, stirring frequently for 20 - 25 minutes or until nice and browned.
While onions are cooking, shred zucchini with skin on. Squeeze out as much water as possible.
Once onions are done, combine all ingredients except cheese in a large bowl and combine thoroughly. I used my hands to make sure everything was mixed well.
Place mixture in a greased 9 x 13 baking dish. Bake for 40 - 45 minutes.
Remove baking dish from oven and crank it up to broil.
Once oven is at broil temperature, top mixture with cheese, put back in oven for 2 - 3 minutes (watching carefully) until golden brown.
Let cool for 5 - 10 minutes before serving as it will be blazing hot.
Now that we are home, I can stock us up on healthier snack options. We do ok with snacking when traveling because I always make sure to have nuts and granola on hand but that gets old after a while.
We don’t eat bread on a regular basis but when we do, we buy these awesome pita’s from Papa Filin’s. They are made locally and always fresh. They are organic, whole wheat and only have 5 ingredients. Think that’s not a big deal? Go look at the list of ingredients in the loaf of bread you have sitting on your counter. Can you pronounce all of the ingredients?
By the same token that we don’t eat bread regularly, we also don’t eat “chips”. To satisfy that urge to have a “chippy” snack, we make our own pita chips and customize them to our tastes.
AND…these pita’s are only 2 WW points if you are keeping track. Since they don’t contain all of the nasty chemicals for preserving, they will mold faster than processed bread so just keep that in mind. If you don’t think you’ll be eating them as bread, whip up some pita chips with the rest so they will last longer.
If you were to make a whole package of pitas into chips, you would have A LOT of chips and at only around $3.00 a package, that makes a cheap, low ingredient, organic snacky treat.
We like them plain, with salt and pepper, sprinkled with parmesan or with a little Neufchâtel cheese and some homemade jam. You could even make a sweeter version of the pita chip and use some organic honey with a sprinkle of cinnamon.
We are still here in gorgeous South Dakota. Yesterday we went to Mount Rushmore and marveled at this piece of Americana. Pictures definitely don’t do it justice.
Then we went on some gorgeous nature drives through Custer State Park. We stopped off at the grocery store first to and pick up a bag of apples and carrots because we were told there would be wild burros that we could feed. What we didn’t like is that we were told that people feed them crackers and cookies. CRACKERS AND COOKIES? Well we couldn’t have that so we got them some healthy snacks. Of course we did 🙂
Happy Burros 🙂
After a long day of seeing incredible views we were hungry. We stopped off in a little town called Keystone, SD. I really wanted to find something to eat that I couldn’t find at home and I did. (I apologize in advance to the vegan/vegetarian souls.) I had bison ribs. If I do eat meat, I choose bison because it is very lean and has a lot less fat. Of course I was offered the typical potato side dish and bread of which I turned both down. But, this recipe for Creamy Garlic Avocado Cauliflower Mash would have gone PERFECT. It’s a healthy comfort food side!
I do love mashed potatoes but don’t love the actual potato so much. Not because they aren’t delicious but I don’t love the starch content and that they metabolize as sugar in the gut. They are high on the glycemic index which is the method in which to measure how certain foods spike blood sugar and insulin levels.
But you don’t need to give up the creamy garlic mashed potato flavor. Simple substitutions make all the difference in terms of creating a healthy side that is gluten free, full of fiber, protein, good fats, low-calorie and low in carbs.
Since cheese isn’t included on the paleo or vegan diet, you can omit the cheese or use nutritional yeast instead and make this true paleo and vegan.