Caprese Spaghetti Squash

The name “Caprese” usually refers to a salad of roma tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and delicious fresh basil, but I took some liberties and combined those same ingredients to make a delicious and healthy dinner dish!

Ingredients:
1 small spaghetti squash
1 pound ground turkey or chicken
2-3 roma tomatoes, diced*
3 cups/handfuls flatleaf spinach*
1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese, grated, cubed or fresh*
1 cup Panko bread crumbs
Olive oil
2 tsp Italian seasoning*
1 tsp each salt and pepper*
1 tsp each granulated onion and garlic*
pinch red pepper flakes*

* All of these ingredients are approximate measurements based on what I used for our family – change up your spices or cheesiness to your preferred taste!

What to Do:
To start, carefully cut several slits into your spaghetti squash so that it doesn’t explode….that would be an interesting way to start the dinner hour for sure!

Place the squash in a shallow dish or bowl with about 2 cups of water and cover – microwave on high 10-12 minutes.

While that is in the microwave, brown meat with about 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the spices. (I used my Instant Pot so you can see I have a bit of leftover water in the pot from pressure cooking, but stovetop works just as well, no need to add water.)  

Add spinach and let it cook down.

Carefully take your spaghetti squash out of the microwave and hold it with a towel and cut in half – needless to say, its like a squash sauna in there and super hot – watch your fingers!! Remove seeds and throw away or feed to some chickens or dry and save for next year’s garden if you’re feeling ambitious. Then take a fork and shred the squash away from the skin and scoop it out

Add the squash to your meat mixture and mix well – let it cook down for a minute or two.

Place halves of squash in a baking dish and prop them up with aluminum foil so they don’t tip over. Spoon meat and squash mixture into shells, filling halfway – spread half of the diced roma tomatoes and half of the mozzarella cheese in a layer. Add the remaining meat and squash mixture to top of shells. Top with remaining cheese and tomatoes and a layer of panko bread crumbs.

Sprinkle with salt and drizzle with olive oil and bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes until bread crumbs are brown and crispy. Enjoy!

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