A twice baked spaghetti squash casserole with beef, cheese and comforting Italian flavors.
I have made spaghetti squash for my family before and their usual response is… Well, let’s just say they don’t eagerly ask for more. Often when you eat an alternative diet, comfort foods can really be mediocre at best. A lot of the time I make “something like” a recipe, but certain recipes can admittedly leave you lingering for the real deal. (Example: Man-Meat hates my healthy pizza.) This recipe is a veggie-ized remake of a dish I make for the family from time to time.
Million dollar Spaghetti has a big name, and I’ve yet to find out where the name even came from but it’s real good stuff. (I’ll have to share that recipe too sometime) Million dollar spaghetti is sort of a lazy lasagna or baked ziti of sorts, my best guess is that someone somewhere won a ribbon with this humble dish, or maybe it just tastes like a million bucks? There’s usually a blend of creamy cheeses, beef, spaghetti and butter if it’s a good recipe. I use cottage cheese and butter in my regular variation but because of the moisture of the spaghetti squash, I modified old faithful accordingly.
This really is reminiscent of the real deal, I have tried my fair share of Primal pasta dishes, from eggplants and zucchini, to other less impressive versions of this recipe, I’ve tried for a while to master the cheesy, veggie, not-pasta casserole. This is finally a “not lasagna” dish that doesn’t end up a soupy mess!
Million Dollar Spaghetti (Squash)
Primal- Gluten Free- Grain Free- Sugar Free- Low Carb
This twice baked spaghetti squash is crowd pleasing, and satisfying. The kids ate seconds and said they’d gladly eat it over and over! The key to its success is pre-baking the spaghetti layer until it’s set up. You can add as much cheese as you like, add Parmesan to the spaghetti layer, use provalone on top too, swap it around to suit your tastes and what you have on hand. I think I might even try adding cottage cheese to the beef layer next time! It’s definitely not a set-in-stone recipe but be careful to not make it too wet.
Spaghetti Squash Layer-
- 1 small spaghetti squash, previously cooked (about 4 cups)
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 Eggs
- Salt and Pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic + onion powder
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1 pound ground beef
- 3 Tablespoons Tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- Salt and pepper
+1 Cup Mozzarella Cheese (use more if desired)
+Pizza toppings if desired (pepperoni, olives, banana peppers, onion, mushrooms etc)
- Preheat Oven to 400°F.
- In a bowl blend together eggs, cream cheese, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder.
- Stir spaghetti squash and shredded cheese into this mixture.
- Pour squash mixture into a greased baking dish and bake for 20 minutes or until SET. (It will be golden around edge)
- While your squash layer bakes, prepare your beef mixture.
- In a skillet over medium high heat, brown the ground beef until it is cooked. (I do not drain away grease, I simply cook it down until its reduced)
- Add tomato paste, Italian seasoning, garlic, salt and pepper to the meat mixture.
- Once the squash layer is set, spoon the meat mixture over top and top the casserole with cheese and pizza toppings if desired.
- Bake an additional 10-15 or until the cheese is melted and browned.