What could be better than a healthy meal served in it’s own straight-from-the-earth bowl? Um, nothing that’s what! This dish is an easy, vegetarian, low carb go-to meal that packs lots of fiber and flavor to keep me satisfied. It’s also one of those meals that tastes even better the next day for lunch after all of the ingredients have had a chance to sit around in the fridge and get to know one another.
Spaghetti Squash is my favorite when it comes to the squash family. It’s low in calories, versatile, delicious, and easy to make. Whether I use it as a pasta replacement, a side dish or a main dish, this squash never disappoints. There are several ways to cook it but I prefer to slice it in half, scoop out the seeds, rub it with a little olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake it. This method gives the squash a little bit of that roasted, slightly charred flavor that I love.
Squash can be a bit intimidating with all the varieties, shapes, colors, and an outer shell that hides it’s goodies inside. It all seems too mysterious to take a chance. Spaghetti squash is a good “beginner” squash that has a mild enough flavor to take on whatever spice or sauce it’s cooked with. Never fear, a great spaghetti squash recipe is here!
Black Bean Spaghetti Squash Bowls
YIELD: 4 large servings (each served in half of a spaghetti squash shell)
2 medium spaghetti squash
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 medium red onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 jalapeno peppers, minced (leave seeds in for added heat)
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
1/2 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup frozen corn, thawed
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Juice of 1 lime
1 cup shredded colby jack cheese
1 medium avocado
2-3 green onions, thinly sliced
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Slice each squash in half lengthwise, remove seeds with a large spoon, and place cut side down on a baking sheet sprayed with olive oil. Bake for 40 minutes or until easily pierced with a knife. Scrape out the spaghetti squash from the shell with a fork, creating the “spaghetti.” Set aside the squash in it’s shell for later use.
In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high. Add red onion, garlic, jalapeno and red bell pepper. Sauté 2-3 minutes. Stir in cumin, oregano, chili powder, salt and pepper. Sauté 1 more minute. Stir in beans, corn, lime juice and half the cilantro until well combined. Add the “spaghetti” from each squash to the vegetable mixture and stir to combine. Taste and season as desired.
Set oven to broil. Stuff each squash half shell with the squash/vegetable mixture from the skillet and top with 1/4 cup cheese. Broil until cheese melts and gets brown and bubbly, 1-2 minutes.
Top with remaining cilantro, slices of avocado and green onion. Serve warm and with wedges of fresh limes or salsa if desired.