I love fall because I like wearing boots and sweaters and eating all the pumpkin and squash things, but I hate the cold, and the fact that I inevitably get sick every year when the weather changes. I’ve been fighting an awful cold/cough for about a week now, and it doesn’t seem to have any intentions of going away anytime soon. It appears to be getting worse actually, and I haven’t slept in days (which unfortunately means that Ethan hasn’t either — sorry babe).
More importantly, I haven’t been able to workout in over a week, which has been even more difficult. Taking time off from exercise has always been super hard for me, although with age, I have gotten better about resting when I know my body really needs it. Right now, I would be coughing up a lung after one minute on the rower, which would be miserable for myself and everyone around me, so I’m sitting it out until I’m feeling back to my normal self. In the meantime, I’m eating all the healthy & delicious food in the hopes that it will help me feel as good as I possibly can with this sickness and simultaneously nurse me back to health. (Along with my inhaler & some serious meds from my asthma doc.)
That’s where this spaghetti squash comes in. All the veggies. All the lean protein. And, all the cheese because with this cold I need some serious #comfortfood. But don’t worry — it’s still super healthy! : )
I don’t eat spaghetti squash that often, but every time I have it, I wonder why I don’t eat it ALL THE TIME. It’s so delicious, and better yet, super versatile. If you type “spaghetti squash” into the search bar on Pinterest, you’ll find thousands of recipes — it’s incredibly overwhelming actually. You can turn it into a Mexican, Italian, or Asian dish, or even transform it into a pizza! What a beautiful thing.
In fact, that’s kinda how I stumbled upon this recipe. I searched for “healthy spaghetti squash recipes” on Pinterest, was faced with approximately 1.5 zillion results, got stressed out, and decided to do my own thing with whatever I had in the fridge. Like I said when I originally posted a photo of this meal on Instagram, I didn’t measure anything when I made it, because I had no idea how it would turn out. Then I was kicking myself later because it turned out to be freaking. amazing. Ethan loved it too! (Meals that are healthy and husband-approved are the absolute best; ammiright?)
Luckily, I am good at guesstimating and was able to create this recipe to share. I’m clearly not a “test out the recipe 20 times before posting” (or even twice) kind of food blogger, which is why you’re getting this version. I had someone DM me on Instagram asking for the recipe a few days after I posted the photo, so I shared my “rough estimates” with her, and she totally loved it! HA – so I’m going with it! 🙂
If you try this untested version and disagree, let me know! But if you do agree, let me know that too. : ) I love when people make my recipes and share it with me, both good and bad! I’ll definitely do some more in-depth testing and tweaking with this recipe if needed.
In the meantime, ENJOY and stay warm!!
Cheesy Broccoli & Shrimp Stuffed Spaghetti Squash
- Prep time: 15 minutes
- Cook time: 45 minutes
- Total time: 1 hour
- Makes 3 servings
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 9 oz frozen, cooked, peeled, deveined shrimp (I used ~20 pieces), thawed
- 2-3 cups broccoli and cauliflower
- ~1/3 cup Lifeway Farmer Cheese
- ~1/3 cup Chobani plain Greek yogurt
- 1 Laughing Cow Garlic & Herb cheese wedge
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1/2-1 tsp crushed red peppers for filling, additional for topping if desired
- 2 cloves garlic, minced (or 1 tsp minced garlic)
- Shredded mozzarella/parmesan cheese, for topping (~1/4 cup per squash half)
- Black pepper, to taste
- 1-2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil and/or avocado oil
Note: in my pictures you will see that I also added sugar snap peas because I had some on hand and decided to throw it in. It was a delicious addition, so feel free to add that as well if your heart desires! Otherwise, broccoli & cauliflower is perfectly fine. 🙂
Also, I had some delicious Lifeway Farmer Cheese on hand, which I highly recommend using because it’s amazing, but you could also probably substitute ricotta cheese if you already have that in your fridge.
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
If you’ve never cooked spaghetti squash before, here’s how ya do it:
I like to cook mine in the microwave for ~4-5 minutes first, as this helps soften it and makes it much easier to cut in half. Poke some holes in it with a knife first so it doesn’t explode in the microwave! (Let it cool for a few minutes; it’ll be hot to touch.)
Cut in half lengthwise with a large knife, then use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and scrape out the insides.
I like to spray mine with extra virgin olive oil using my Mr. Misto olive oil sprayer, and season with black pepper. (If you don’t have a Mr. Misto, a drizzle of olive oil will do.)
Lay squash halves face down on a prepared baking sheet (lined with foil and sprayed with non-stick cooking spray) and cook in oven for ~40-45 minutes at 400 F.
If you want a visual of this whole process, here is a great tutorial on Greatist.
2. Cut broccoli and cauliflower into florets, then toss in 1-2 tbsp of EVOO or avocado oil, and season with black pepper and garlic powder, to taste. Spread veggies onto a separate baking sheet, and place in oven when there are 30 minutes remaining on your timer for the spaghetti squash. Flip the veggies halfway through (after ~15 minutes) to cook evenly.
3. When there are ~10 minutes remaining, heat up shrimp in a medium skillet over medium heat with a little bit of olive oil, garlic powder and black pepper. When shrimp is heated through and slightly browned, remove it from heat. (Drain any excess liquid, if needed.)
4. Remove spaghetti squash and veggies from the oven when done. Scrape the flesh or “spaghetti” out from the insides using a fork. Scoop all of the insides into a large bowl, along with roasted veggies and cooked shrimp. (Be careful touching the “shells” – they will be hot!)
5. Now add your filling: Lifeway farmer cheese, plain Greek yogurt, Laughing Cow cheese wedge, and spices, and stir until evenly combined.
6. Scoop spaghetti, shrimp, veggie and sauce mixture back into the squash halves, evenly divided. Sprinkle ~1/4 cup (or more as desired) shredded mozzarella/parmesan cheese on top of both halves, and place back in oven for ~5 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
Have a great rest of your week!
Shanna Hutcheson, RD LD
#WellnessForTheWin #SpaghettiSquash #YUM