One kind of food I don’t have often (but crave once in a while) is some kind of pasta!
It’s one of those comfort foods that just hits the spot, but unfortunately is calorie dense and for me leaves me feeling overfull (in an uncomfortable way).
Regardless of how it makes me feel after, it’s still so delicious and from time to time I just want a heaping pile of spaghetti!
I never knew about the whole “spaghetti squash” thing until the last year or so and it has changed me life, haha :). There are some times where you just have to do it and get the real thing – but when you’re in the midst of a good week and you’ve been on track with your diet and workouts, the last thing you want to do it blow it on one meal.
This spaghetti squash pasta with roasted garlic sauce, mushrooms and spinach is the perfect dish to curb that pasta craving and help you stay on track for the week!
What’s so easy about this meal is you can make the spaghetti squash in the crockpot the day before, then mix in the other ingredients and heat whenever you want to serve.
You could even eat it cold as a “pasta” salad 🙂
Spaghetti Squash Pasta Ingredients:
For the Pasta:
1 spagetti squash (2-3 cups cooked spaghetti squash)
1 8-oz. container white mushrooms, sliced and sautéed
6 slices of bacon, cooked and chopped (can use bacon bits)
1 5-oz. bag baby spinach, sautéed
salt and pepper
For the Roasted Garlic Sauce:
1 head of garlic, roasted
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1-1/4 cup whole milk
salt and pepper
shredded cheese for topping
For the Pasta:
- To cook the spaghetti squash I use the crockpot; pierce the squash 4-5 times and place into the crockpot on HIGH for 3-4 hours.
- Meanwhile start to prep the remaining ingredients.*
- To sauté the mushrooms, heat a skillet on medium heat and place sliced mushrooms into the pan. Cook down until liquid from mushrooms is fully absorbed and they are cooked down (about 5-7 minutes), stirring frequently. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
- Cook the bacon according to your liking and chop into bite size pieces. Set aside.
- To sauté the spinach, add bag of raw spinach to a skillet on medium heat. Cook down until spinach is wilted and liquid is absorbed, then salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Once the squash is fully cooked, use a fork to shred squash into a pasta-like consistency.
- Place squash to a large bowl then add in mushrooms, bacon, spinach and roasted garlic sauce (directions below) and toss to combine.
- Optional: Add pasta back to the outer shell of the squash, sprinkle with cheese and place into the oven on broil to brown the cheese. Serve.
* To make things easier with less steps, all the mix-ins can most likely be purchased already prepped. For example, you can buy frozen spinach and you just have to defrost it; for the bacon you can purchase bacon bits instead, and mushrooms you can buy in a can (it hurts to say that lol, but it helps to save on some time).
For the Roasted Garlic Sauce:**
- To roast the garlic, I found a helpful post here that makes it super easy.
- Once the garlic is roasted, remove and mash up garlic cloves into a paste. Set aside.
- To make the sauce, melt down the butter, then whisk in flour and allow to cook a bit and start to bubble.
- Slowly start to pour in milk and whisk consistently (you make have to add more milk depending on how thick you like the sauce). Continue whisking until thickened and bring to a boil. Season with salt and pepper and add in garlic “paste”.
- Turn heat down to low and cook for another few minutes.
- At this point you can serve as is or if you want you could add shredded cheese to the make cheese sauce (I used it without the cheese).
** To make this easier, sometimes I just buy a jar of light Alfredo since it will still have a great taste but will cut down on prep time.
Serving Size: 1/2 “pasta” mixture (with mushrooms, sauce, spinach, and bacon) ***
Fat: 20 g (to get this down use a light Alfredo sauce instead of the full fat version)
Carbohydrates: 28 g
Sugar: 14 g
Fiber: 4 g
Protein: 14 g
*** To serve these I take half of the mixture and scoop it back into the half of the squash and sprinkle with a bit of cheese (as seen in the pictures above)