Kale adds a nutritious boost to the otherwise hearty dish. As the squash is baking, prep the kale by cutting the leaves off the stem and either shredding or chopping them into smaller pieces. After the squash has been baking for about half an hour, I usually start preparing the onion and sausage. Then everything is hot and ready to enjoy around the same time.
I like the addition of pine nuts to the sausage and kale, but they are completely optional. I realize that most people do not keep pine nuts just hanging around the pantry. Also for some reason, I almost always forget about pine nuts (or any other nuts, for that matter) when they are roasting on the stove. I pay attention for the unimportant first two minutes and then start doing something else. Five minutes later I am smacking my forehead because I can smell them burning. I can’t seem to learn my lesson with this particular mistake. If anyone has a suggestion about how to remedy this, I am all ears.
I decided to change things up with this recipe and serve the food right in the shell of the squash. It’s a bit more playful and each person can have his or her own. If there are just two of us eating dinner we each get a half. For four people, I try to pick out two smaller spaghetti squash at the store so that everyone gets a ‘boat.’ So have a little more fun at dinner, even a regular old weeknight dinner, with these hearty spaghetti squash boats.
- 1 medium spaghetti squash or 2 small spaghetti squash
- 1 1/2 lbs. Italian chicken sausage, casings removed
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 bunch kale
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- Salt and pepper
- 2 tbsp pine nuts, roasted
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place squash in the microwave for 3-4 minutes to soften. Using a sharp knife cut the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and discard. Place the halves, with the cut side up, on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 45-50 minutes, until you can poke the squash easily with a fork. Let cool until you can handle it safely.
- Meanwhile, prepare the kale by removing the center stems and either tearing or cutting up the leaves. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 4-5 minutes. Add the chicken sausage and break apart with a spatula to crumble. Cook for 10-12 minutes, stirring regularly, until the sausage is browned and cooked through. Add the kale and stir. Cook for a few minutes more to wilt the kale. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Once cooled, scrape the insides of the spaghetti squash with a fork to shred the squash into strands. Transfer the strands into the skillet with the sausage and toss to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Divide the mixture among the squash shells, and then top with pine nuts and parsley to serve.
More Good Spaghetti Squash Recipes
Spaghetti Squash with Mushroom Sauce
This spaghetti squash recipe creates a decadent, rich pasta sauce without the use of dairy or adding excess calories. The creamy mushroom sauce makes a great compliment to the healthy spaghetti squash. Arrowroot powder helps to thicken the sauce, which should then be served immediately over the pasta for the best results.
1 medium spaghetti squash
Extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
8 oz. white mushrooms, sliced
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1/3 cup chicken broth
3/4 cup almond milk
2 tsp arrowroot powder
1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place the squash in the microwave for 3-4 minutes to soften. Use a sharp knife to cut the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and discard. Place the halves, with the cut side up, on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 45-50 minutes, until you can poke the squash easily with a fork. Let cool until you can handle it safely. Then scrape the insides with a fork to shred the squash into strands.
2. Meanwhile, heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and sauté for 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Stir in the mushrooms. Sauté for 8-10 minutes until soft and caramelized.
3. Stir in the white wine vinegar and chicken broth. Cook until the liquid is reduced by half. Stir in the almond milk. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5-7 minutes. In a small bowl, stir the arrowroot powder with two teaspoons of water. Add into the skillet to thicken the sauce, stirring constantly. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately over the spaghetti squash, garnished with fresh parsley.