Spaghetti Squash BowlsDid you know that spaghetti squash gets its name from when it is cooked the inside flesh comes out looking like well, spaghetti?! What I love about this squash is that while we think Fall, squash is available year-round in most grocery stores.
Let's start with the many health benefits of this squash. It hosts a wide range of vitamins such as C, A, B-6, K, folate, & riboflavin to name a few. Plus, did you know that it is more beneficial to get your vitamins from plant-based foods than a multi-vitamin? "This is because foods have several chemicals that work together to make the vitamins function more efficiently."
OK, enough sciencey stuff lets get to the food! Have you ever tried to cut a spaghetti squash in half? Great arm workout for sure! lol! You will need a super sharp knife and to be very careful. Once you cut off the ends you slice it down the middle and scoop out the seeds. Rub it down with some good quality olive oil inside and out and sprinkle with salt & pepper.
Place cut side down on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes at 400F. While cooking you can prepare the tasty Mediterranean filling that will be stuffed inside. I am talking about chickpeas (great plant-based protein), red pepper, kalamata olives (what is a Mediterranean dish without these?!) and a sprinkle of feta. Oh and topped with a parsley pesto sauce, this dish takes me away to what I feel Greece would be like! Sigh....One day!
This recipe is just a flavor explosion in your mouth! Even my hubs who is often skeptical of my plant-based dinners really enjoyed this one! You could also cook an extra squash and keep the filling & dressing separate for dinner or lunch the next day. Great for meal prep! Great for low carb! Just great all around!
Comment or tag me on Instagram if you give it a try - love to see your recreations!
1 Spaghetti Squash (this is for 2 servings - grab 2 squash for 4 servings & divide filling evenly)
1 can chickpeas (rinsed)
1 red pepper, chopped
1/3 cup red onion, chopped (could soak in water to take the bite away)
1/4-1/2 cup sliced Kalamata olives (depending on how much you like them!)
2 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 garlic clove, chopped finely
1 Tbs lemon juice
Fresh parsley and basil for garnish
Salt & Pepper to taste
Crumbled feta cheese (optional)
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup fresh parsley & basil
2 Tbs lemon juice
2 Tbs water
1/4 cup EVOO
Salt to taste
1. Preheat oven to 400F. Cut off top and bottom on squash (use a very sharp knife) then cut down the middle.
2. Scrape out seeds and discard (or you can roast them!) Drizzle and rub with 1 Tbs olive oil, inside and out. Then sprinkle with salt & pepper.
3. Place cut side down on parchment paper and bake for 40-50 minutes (depending on oven). Check with a fork when done. Should be soft.
4. Prepare chickpea salad, in a large bowl combine chickpeas, pepper, onion, olives, chopped basil & parsley, lemon juice, 1 Tbs olive oil, and salt. Combine everything well and set aside.
5. For the pesto, in a food processor add all ingredients except olive oil. Begin to process slow and then slowly add in oil. Stop to scrape down sides as needed. Continue until well blended.
6. Once the squash is cooked through and cooled to handle, run a fork in the middle to make it spaghetti like then add filling to squash bowl. Top with pesto dressing and dig in!!
7. If using for meal prep, store squash, filling and pesto separately and assemble when ready to eat.
recipe adapted from cookieandcake.com