Spaghetti Squash Casserole

How’s your Thanksgiving leftover situation? Are you still eating pie for breakfast? Recovered from Black Friday shopping? Really, really wishing your pants fit like they did last Wednesday? Healthy Spaghetti Squash Casserole to the rescue!

Spaghetti Squash Casserole with ground turkey, tomatoes, and Italian spices. Easy, CHEESY, and healthy! An all-in-one low carb meal. Recipe at wellplated.com | @wellplated

It feels a little odd to be writing to you about Thanksgiving, since, assuming our travel plans are progressing according to schedule, I’m currently in Vietnam aboard a junk boat on Halong Bay. We spent our Turkey Day sipping tea and eating noodles at the Golden Triangle, the point on the map where Thailand, Myanmar, and Laos all intersect.

I can’t wait to tell you about spending the night on Halong Bay, the time I hiked for three straight days, bathing elephants, the street food in Bangkok, and SO MUCH MORE once we return, but for now I’m going to tell you about something else golden, aside from the Golden Triangle: the cheesy top of this Spaghetti Squash Casserole.

Healthy Spaghetti Squash Casserole with turkey, tomatoes, and Italian spices. Low carb, easy, and so satisfying! Recipe at wellplated.com | @wellplated

Although I wasn’t home (or even in the Western Hemisphere) for Thanksgiving this year, this Spaghetti Squash Casserole is exactly the sort of recipe that, were I back at my house and reminding myself that leftover Pumpkin Pecan Pie for breakfast isn’t a sustainable life plan, I’d crave for dinner. It’s wholesome and loaded with healthy ingredients, yet cozy and filling enough to sustain my holiday cheer.

Healthy Spaghetti Squash Casserole. Easy, cheesy, and DELICIOUS. A low carb dinner your whole family will love! Recipe at wellplated.com | @wellplated

The casserole filling is an easy mix of roasted and shredded spaghetti squash, tasty ground turkey (feel free to swap chicken if you’re still turkey-d out), diced tomatoes, bell peppers, and Italian spices. All of the ingredients cook together in a single pan, and you can even get a head start by roasting the spaghetti squash up to three days in advance.

A shower of low-fat mozzarella gives this healthy squash casserole that iconic (dare I say mandatory?) bubbly, cheesy casserole top. Digging the serving spoon right into it is one of life’s biggest little joys.

Spaghetti Squash Casserole. Easy, cheesy, and healthy! A low-carb meal with turkey, tomatoes, and Italian spices. Recipe at wellplated.com | @wellplated

I hope this Spaghetti Squash Casserole recipe helps make your next few weeks more enjoyable by providing you with an easy, healthy dinner option on busy weeknights. Too often the holidays can become a source of stress and never-ending to-dos. With this Spaghetti Squash Casserole, you can consider dinner checked off your list, at least for one night…two if you count the leftovers.

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Spaghetti Squash Casserole

Healthy Spaghetti Squash Casserole with ground turkey, tomatoes, and Italian spices. Easy, CHEESY, and a crowdpleaser. Low-carb, freezer-friendly recipe!

Yield: 6 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Ingredients:

  • 1 small/medium spaghetti squash (about 2 pounds)
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound (93% lean) ground turkey
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored and diced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 can (14.5-ounce) diced tomatoes with Italian spices, drained
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasonings of choice (or a mix of oregano, basil, and thyme)
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (reduce to 1/4 teaspoon if sensitive to spice)
  • 1 cup freshly grated part-skim mozzarella or provolone cheese, divided
  • Chopped fresh parsley or basil

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Slice the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Place in a shallow baking dish, cut-side down, then pour 1/2 cup water into the dish, around the squash. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until the flesh of the squash is easily pierced with a fork. When cool enough to handle, pull the squash strings out of the squash’s center with a fork and transfer to a large mixing bowl. The squash strings should look like spaghetti.
  2. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Heat the olive oil in a large, deep skillet over medium high. Add the turkey, onion, bell pepper, salt, and black pepper. Cook, breaking apart the meat, until meat is browned and the vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes. Add the drained tomatoes, garlic, Italian seasoning, and red pepper flakes. Let cook until most of the liquid from the tomatoes has cooked off, about 4 minutes, then add the reserved squash. Cook and stir until most of the remaining liquid has cooked off, about 1-2 minutes more, increasing the heat if needed. Stir in 1/2 cup of the shredded cheese. There may be some liquid remaining in the pan.
  3. Lightly coat a deep 8×8-inch baking dish or 2-quart casserole dish with cooking spray. With a slotted spoon, scoop the squash mixture into the pan in an even layer, discarding any excess liquid (some in the pan is OK—just not too much). Bake, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup cheese, then return to the oven and bake until the cheese melts, about 5-10 additional minutes. For an extra-golden-brown top, place the casserole under the broiler for a few minutes. Remove from the oven, sprinkle with parsley and/or basil, and let rest 5 minutes. Serve hot.
  • Make it ahead: Spaghetti squash can be roasted and shredded, then stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days. When ready to make the casserole, add to the filling in Step 2 as directed.
  • Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • I haven’t tried freezing the casserole yet, but as a reader pointed out in the comments (thanks, Andrea!), spaghetti squash can get watery when thawed. If that doesn’t bother you, here’s what to do: Bake as directed, let cool, then tightly cover and freeze for up to 3 months. Let thaw in the refrigerator overnight, then heat in a 350 degree F oven, covered, until warmed through. Uncover and bake 5 or so additional minutes, until hot and bubbly.
Adapted from Taste of Home
// All images and text ©/Well Plated.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1

  • Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories: 193
  • Total Fat: 10g
  • Saturated Fat: 4g
  • Cholesterol: 71mg
  • Sodium: 478mg
  • Carbohydrates: 8g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Sugar: 3g
  • Protein: 20g

About Erin Clarke

I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food taste incredible. Wearer of plaid, lover of bourbon, and firmly convinced that sweets and veggies both deserve a place at the table. MORE ABOUT ERIN...

39 comments

  1. just threw the last of my leftover brussels into scrambled eggs, so I’m finally done!!!

    …. and ready to dive face first into this casserole, naturally ;)

  2. I can’t wait to hear about your travels too!! Until then…dreaming about this creamy spaghetti squash casserole will suffice :)

  3. hey girl this looks really good! Y’all have fun and stay safe heading home!

  4. Saralee M Czajkowski Reply

    Yaaaay!! My whole family loved it! Even the picky one. Does well for 2nd day leftovers too. I also made it for my friends that just had a baby and they said it was delicious!

    • Woohoo, that’s great to hear, Saralee! I’m glad your family and friends enjoyed the recipe! Thanks so much for taking the time to leave this awesome review!

  5. What size can of diced tomatoes do you use? We have 28 and 14oz sizes here in Canada. :) Can’t wait to try this!

  6. This was delicious. Dr told hubs and I to watch our carbs so searched and found this recipe.  My grandkids (ages 12 & 11) were told it was spaghetti casserole (which really isn’t a lie). They ate it no questions asked and one is a very picky eater.  I used a red pepper as I can’t tolerate green peppers, lean ground beef as that’s all I had and since we are cheese lovers doubled the cheese.  I will definitely be making this again. 

  7. What is the serving size on this?

  8. how much is considered a serving size, a cup? 1/2 cup?

    • Hi Erika! I’m afraid I did measure an exact amount. The nutrition information is based on six servings, so I would suggest dividing the total dish by that amount. I hope that you enjoy it!

  9. I made this for dinner last Wednesday and it was delicious! I’m pretty sure it’s my new favorite way to eat spaghetti squash! :) I used a shredded Italian cheese blend and stirred a handful of that in to the dish, in addition to what I sprinkled on top. I also pulsed a handful of croutons in my processor and sprinkled those on top to broil with the cheese for the last couple of minutes. Thanks for a great recipe!

    Rating: 5
    • I’m so glad you enjoyed it, Michelle! The crouton crumbs on top sound delicious. Thanks so much for leaving this nice review and for the 5 stars! I really appreciate it!

  10. I have tried freezing spaghetti squash and wanted to save you all the heartache and waste — it turns to watery mush. You’d likely have soup. 
    Looking forward to trying this new recipe. Thx 

  11. This was amazing! My husband raved about and asked me to make it again two days later :)
    I also had some of the leftovers the next morning with an overeasy egg over the top – it may be my new favorite breakfast. 

    Rating: 5
    • Becky, having it for breakfast with an egg is a great idea! I’m so happy to hear you and your husband loved the recipe. Thank you so much for leaving this wonderful review!

  12. I’ve made this twice so far. The first time exactly as shown and we loved it! My 5 and 3 year old girls loved it along with my husband. The second time while at the store I couldn’t find a spaghetti squash, and so, having already done my meal planning, got an eggplant instead and that worked great. Not sure what that change did to the carb count, but peeled, cubed and sautéed with the turkey before baking, the eggplant made a good substitution. Not as good as the squash, but definitely a good option when in need.

    Rating: 5
    • I am so excited to hear that Jessica! Thank you so much for letting me know how the eggplant turned out too. That sounds delicious! I truly appreciate your taking time to leave this lovely review. It’s so helpful for me and for others considering the recipe!

  13. Such a great recipe! Just made it for my family and all of them loved it! Will definitely make again. Very flavorful and healthy.

    Rating: 5
  14. This was so good!!! I made a couple of modifications to use what I had on hand: instead of shredded cheese, I put slices of provolone on top in the last 10 minutes of baking; also, I had plain diced tomatoes in tomato sauce, so took a little longer to cook off liquid, and I added a little more seasoning (Savory Spice Italian Herb Blend) since the canned tomatoes weren’t seasoned.

    Rating: 5
    • Melissa, your tweaks sound delicious! Provolone is a great choice. I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe…thanks for stopping by to leave this great review!

  15. What is the serving sz for the nutritional facts on this casserole? So good!

    Rating: 4
  16. FYI – I successfully froze and reheated this. Just as delicious as the first night out of the oven! And the squash is still crunchy! Thanks for the recipe!

    Rating: 5
  17. Making this tonight.  Sounds so good, love spaghetti squash instead of pasta.  I’m using spaghetti sauce in place of diced tomatoes. 

  18. I love spaghetti squash, so this was right down my alley. My husband is not as much of a fan, but I wanted to give this a try.

    I added some mushrooms too, and my spaghetti squash was a bit big (around 3 lbs), so I added about a cup of my homemade marinara along with the diced tomatoes to the sauce. Instead of adding the shredded cheese to the mix, I put half of it in my casserole dish, then did a layer of provolone cheese, then the rest on top. I baked at 20 minutes, then topped with cheese and finished it off. This was really tasty! The spaghetti squash wasn’t overcooked and had a great texture in this recipe. I cooked my 3 pounder on a sheet pan with a bit of water for around 30 minutes, then checked to see if it was done. I was worried the double baking would make it mushy, but it was perfect!

    But wait for it…..HUBBY AT 2 HELPINGS!!! And he just sent me a text saying he was telling his buddy at work about it, and he wanted the link for the recipe! I almost fell over today after this one!!! This is DEFINITELY on the rotation. He mentioned adding a little ricotta next time like my baked ziti (where I added the provolone in this round, I would add ricotta mixed with a little pesto to flavor it up). Such a great recipe!!!!

    Rating: 5
    • WOOHOO Charlene! I’m so happy to hear the recipe was a success! Your tweaks sound absolutely delicious. Thanks for taking the time to share them and for leaving this awesome review!

  19. I just made this recipe – its fantastic – my family have been hovering around the kitchen waiting for it to come out of the oven – I made a double batch and it won’t be around very long. Thank you for the great recipe

    Rating: 5
    • Thanks for taking the time to leave this awesome review, Sandi! I’m glad the recipe is a winner for your family!

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