Spaghetti squash is a classic Paleo pasta replacement, and this One-Pot Sausage and Chicken Spaghetti Squash Bake brings it together with protein and bold flavors to create a complete meal your whole family will love. If your family enjoys more traditional sauce-covered pasta dishes, check out the Spaghetti Squash Bolognese on page 338 of Practical Paleo 2nd Edition, or order Spaghetti Squash Bolognese Bake from Balanced Bites Meals to have it delivered right to your door!
This recipe also contains one of our Balanced Bites Spice Blends - ITALIAN - which you can shop here!
- 1 medium spaghetti squash, about 5 pounds
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 1/2 pound ground pork, beef, or turkey
- 1 tbsp ITALIAN Spice Blend, divided
- 1 small yellow onion, sliced
- 1 red bell pepper, sliced
- 1 clove garlic, grated or minced
- sea salt
- black pepper
- 1/2 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breast, cut into 1-inch pieces (see note)
- 2 cups loosely packed spinach, chopped
- 2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup pizza sauce (use no-sugar added variety)
- chopped fresh basil
- coarse sea salt
- red pepper flakes
Make spaghetti squash noodles: Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Slice the spaghetti squash in half crosswise. Scoop out the seeds, then sprinkle the cut sides with salt and pepper. Place both halves facedown on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for 35 to 45 minutes, until the flesh of the squash is translucent and the skin begins to soften and easily separates from the "noodles" inside. After you remove the squash from the oven, lower the temperature to 350ºF.
While the squash is roasting, prepare the rest of the ingredients: Heat a large oven-safe pot, such as an enameled cast-iron skillet, over medium-high heat and add the ground meat. Season with 1 1/2 teaspoons of the spice blend. Cook for 6 to 7 minutes, until the meat is browned, breaking the meat up with the spatula as it cooks. Remove the meat using a slotted spoon, leaving about 1 tablespoon of the oil behind.
Lower the heat to medium and add the onion, bell pepper, and garlic and season with a few pinches each of salt and pepper. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent and starting to brown. If there are too many brown bits on the bottom of the pan and things are beginning to burn, add a couple tablespoons of water and use a wooden spoon to loosen the bits. Remove the vegetables from the pot and set aside. If you added water to the pan during cooking, add a teaspoon of ghee or other cooking fat to the pan before adding the chicken.
Add the chicken to the pot, season with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons of spice blend, and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until cooked through.
Return the sausage and vegetables to the pot, then add the cooked spaghetti squash noodles, spinach, basil, and egg and stir everything thoroughly to combine. Taste and add more salt and pepper, if needed (keeping in mind you will be garnishing the dish with coarse sea salt).
Dollop spoonfuls of pizza sauce over the top and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the egg is cooked and everything is warmed through together.
Garnish with fresh basil, coarse salt, and red pepper flakes before serving.
Omit the egg.
If you are using chicken breast, add 1 tablespoon of ghee or other cooking fat to the pot before adding the chicken.