Ok, you have to try this. Think lasagna only vegetarian, lower in fat, and low carb. This hits all the good things unless you don’t eat dairy. And, best of all it is super delicious. When I say think lasagna, I’m not kidding. It really does taste a lot like lasagna. And, it is easy. It does take a bit of time to bake the spaghetti squash, but really that is just poking the squash with a knife and sticking it in the oven. Not hard and requires no hands on time.
Now you can make your own marinara, and that would add a little time, but I cheated and bought some high quality sauce in a jar. My homemade marinara sauce can be found inside my pizza stuffed eggplant post. I really need to make that a post of its own for people looking for marinara recipes, but this is one of my I worked all day meals, so the jar works just fine.
Cheesy Italian Spaghetti Squash Bake
- spaghetti squash - You are going to need about six cups cooked, so I used two smallish squash.
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 6 cups marinara sauce (about 2 26 ounce jars)
- 15 ounces fat free ricotta cheese
- 6 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded (I used part skim).
- 1 cup Parmesan Cheese (Use the cheap powdery kind. You need it to absorb some of the moisture from the squash.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Use a knife to pierce the skin of the spaghetti squash in various places all over. Place on a baking sheet and bake until tender (about 1 hour and 15 minutes.)
- When you remove the squash from the oven reduce the heat to 350 degrees.
- When squash is cool enough to work with, slice in half and scrape out and discard seeds.
- Use a fork to separate and remove strings.
- Toss the spaghetti squash with salt and olive oil.
- In a large deep baking dish (mine is kind of an odd size - a little smaller than 9"x13" and a little deeper, but 9"x13" would work), add a little marinara - just enough to cover the bottom of the dish, so that the squash doesn't stick.
- Layer about half the squash, half the ricotta, half remaining sauce, and half the mozzarella.
- Repeat layers and then sprinkle the top with the Parmesan.
- Bake for approximately 45 minutes or until heated through, bubbly and golden brown on top.