Easy Spaghetti Squash with Turkey Meatballs (PCOS)

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Spaghetti and meatballs is one of my favorite dishes. I grew up in an area that had a large population of Italians and wonderful Italian restaurants. I love Italian food! But, when I started eating in a way that would help me feel better with PCOS, I initially eliminated all pasta dishes. I think dieting, deprivation and denial can set us up for binging. I would deny myself the food that I loved and it was as if I was denying myself a piece of my past and my history. I often found myself craving lasagna ravioli and a big dish of spaghetti – I would give in to these cravings and then feel awful about myself (and physically feel awful too.) I have found ways to modify the food I love, to make it nourishing to my soul, but also to my body. This spaghetti and meatball recipe is delicious and satisfying, but without the carb coma for dessert.

Further Food Nutritionist Commentary:

Who doesn’t love gluten-free, refined carb-free spaghetti and meatballs. This recipe is full of fiber thanks to the oats and veggies in this dish and by using lean protein like turkey in place of beef, it is heart healthy too! Spaghetti squash is such a fantastic substitute for regular spaghetti and comes in at only 42 calories per cup so you can dig in without feeling deprived all while getting a hearty dose of antioxidants including beta-carotene and vitamin A.

By Amy Shapiro, MS, RD, CDN

Easy Spaghetti Squash with Turkey Meatballs (PCOS)

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Servings: 5

Ingredients

1 pound organic ground turkey

1 onion (finely chopped)

3 cloves garlic (minced)

1 shallot (diced)

1 cup oats (coarsely ground)

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon oregano

1 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

2 eggs (lightly beaten)

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup fresh parsley (chopped)
1 large spaghetti squash

1 cup water

1 tablespoon olive oil

sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1 jar Boutique-brand marinara sauce – I like Rao’s . You want to find a sauce that uses olive oil, is low in sugar and natural ingredients

1 8 ounce can organic tomato sauce (I like Muir Glen)

1 14.5 ounce can organic diced tomatoes (I like Muir Glen)

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 cup onion (chopped)

1/2 cup green bell pepper (chopped)

2 cloves garlic (minced)

8 ounce baby spinach or baby kale

fresh parsley and/or basil, to garnish

Instructions

1. Combine all ingredients (above the spaghetti squash) and mix by hand to combine. Roll 1 1/2″ meatballs and place on a baking drying rack that has been placed on a foil covered baking sheet. Bake at 375 for about 25-30 minutes.
2. Cut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Place cut side down in a baking dish. Prick top with fork or knife. Add water to pan and bake at 375 for 30 minutes. The squash is done when you can easily slide a fork through. Don’t over cook or the squash will be mushy. Scrape the squash strands into a bowl and add olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.
3. Heat olive oil in a heavy large pan or Dutch oven. Add onion, pepper and garlic and cook until fragrant and tender.

4. Add marinara, tomato sauce and diced tomatoes and bring to a simmer.

5. Add cooked meatballs and simmer for about 20 minutes.

6. Add spinach and cook until just wilted.

7. Serve over spaghetti squash and garnish with parsley and basil.

1. Combine all ingredients (above the spaghetti squash) and mix by hand to combine. Roll 1 1/2″ meatballs and place on a baking drying rack that has been placed on a foil covered baking sheet. Bake at 375 for about 25-30 minutes. 2. Cut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Place cut side down in a baking dish. Prick top with fork or knife. Add water to pan and bake at 375 for 30 minutes. The squash is done when you can easily slide a fork through. Don’t over cook or the squash will be mushy. Scrape the squash strands into a bowl and add olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. 3. Heat olive oil in a heavy large pan or Dutch oven. Add onion, pepper and garlic and cook until fragrant and tender. 4. Add marinara, tomato sauce and diced tomatoes and bring to a simmer. 5. Add cooked meatballs and simmer for about 20 minutes. 6. Add spinach and cook until just wilted. 7. Serve over spaghetti squash and garnish with parsley and basil.

Nutrition Information

Per Serving:  Calories: 424; Total Fat: 24 g; Saturated Fat: 5 g; Monounsaturated Fat: 5 g; Polyunsaturated Fat: 1 g; Cholesterol: 153mg; Sodium: 1790 mg; Potassium: 832 mg; Carbohydrate: 27 g; Fiber: 6 g; Sugar: 12 g; Protein: 26 g

Nutrition Bonus:   Vit A: 121%; Vit C : 96%; Iron:30%; Calcium: 15%;

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