Spaghetti Squash with Bacon, Cheese and Grass Fed Beef
Spaghetti squash is my absolute favorite non starchy vegetable (low carb) substitute for pasta and probably one of my favorite veggie side besides cauliflower of course.
I personally feel my best when I limit my carbohydrate intake with both meals and snacks to avoid spikes and drops in blood glucose which translates to spikes and crashes in energy throughout the day. I always go for Spaghetti squash to avoid the post pasta coma considering it only has 7 grams of carbs per cup cooked compared to 45 grams of empty carbohydrates with pasta (gluten full or gluten free) per cup. Not to mention spaghetti squash actually contains nutrients such as Vitamin A , Zinc, Manganese and Potassium to name a few meaning it provides more sustained energy. This is not the case for any grain based pasta whether it be gluten free or a typical wheat pasta.
Spaghetti squash is best suited for making casseroles and pasta dishes but its nutty flavor can be enjoyed simply roasted in the oven with butter , salt and pepper as well. To turn the giant hard gourd into delicious noodles it does require a little bit of prep time. I enjoy the taste of spaghetti squash when it has been roasted but you could also soften it in the microwave if desired. First begin by preheating oven to 375F or 400F depending on your oven. Slice your spaghetti squash long ways and scoop out the seeds ( microwave for 1 minute if you are unable to cut through the squash raw). Drizzle your raw spaghetti squash halves with grapeseed oil or melted butter and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on baking sheet face down and bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes or until desired tenderness. I like to cook it until it is tender but not soggy or too soft especially if I plan on re-roasting it to make it into a casserole!
1 medium spaghetti squash, cooked (see instructions above)
1.5 cups your choice of cheese (I used equal parts Parmesan and mozzarella. Gruyere or Gouda would work nice too!)
4 slices cooked pasture raised bacon, chopped (I had sugar free bacon leftover from breakfast but you could use prosciutto or ham to avoid extra step of cooking bacon!)
1 pound grass fed ground beef
1 tsp grassfed butter
2 tsp dried onion and garlic salt ( I love usingTrader Joe's Everything but the bagel seasoning)
1 pinch black pepper
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
Start by preheating the oven to 375F. Begin browning the grass fed ground beef with 1 tsp grass fed butter and 1 tsp garlic and onion salt on the stove top under medium heat until no longer pink or about 10 minutes and remove from heat and set aside
Scoop out the flesh of the cooked spaghetti squash into large oven safe casserole dish. Mix in ground beef and chopped bacon pieces and remaining 1 tsp of garlic and onion salt and pepper if desired. Incorporate 1 cup of cheese into mixture and 1/4 cup chopped basil. Top with remaining 1/2 cup of cheese and bake uncovered for 10- 15 minutes or until cheese is melted. Top finished casserole with 1/4 cup chopped basil and enjoy!