Baked Spaghetti Squash (3 ways to cook it)

This was something that I’ve been wanting to try but haven’t gotten around to until last weekend. I am so glad that my sister decided to go with this for dinner as I have been very curious and now I know that this dish will be making it to our table again in the future… it’s so easy to do as well!

You can use the cooked squash in almost any pasta dish and I can’t wait to give it a try with Mama’s Secret Spaghetti Sauce or with some Easy Alfredo Sauce, the possibilities are endless. We ate it with some Easy Baked Chicken, Sauteed Squash (we used a combination of other vegetables instead of the squash), and some Quick & Easy Garlic Bread (which I later made croutons with). 

I’m thinking this might also work well in place of the squash in our favorite Cheesy Squash Casserole or maybe even good as Vegetable Casserole. I’ve also read that Spaghetti Squash is good with a little butter and brown sugar… just the way I like my sweet potatoes!

Did I mention that spaghetti squash is a low carb pasta alternative? It also has many great health benefits that you can read about HERE. This fits in well with our Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle changes that we’ve been trying to implement!

Don’t throw out the seeds! Try them in this recipe: Roasted Pumpkin Seeds


Baked Spaghetti Squash (3 ways to cook it)

Baked Spaghetti Squash (3 ways to cook it)

Ingredients:

  • Spaghetti Squash
  • olive oil
  • garlic salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

First, you want to wash off your squash and then cut in half. You can cut it in whichever direction you like as it will cook about the same… just make sure it will fit into your cooking dish.

Next, take a large spoon and scrape out the seeds and insides… kids like to help with this part. You can also roast these just like you can pumpkin seeds.

Turn the squash over and use a fork to poke a few holes in the skin.

Now you can lightly rub the olive oil on the inside and sprinkle with seasonings.

Choose a method of cooking below:

I have only tried the baking method so far so I can’t really testify to the other two methods… yet.

Oven:

Preheat the oven to 375.

Place your prepared squash in a baking dish or on a cookie sheet.

Bake for 30-45 minutes or until slightly tender. The cooked squash should dent easily when you push your finger into the skin. The skin will also start to darken a bit.

You may find that you need to let it cook slightly longer or a little less. The desired tenderness is completely up to you! 

Let cool slightly and then use a fork to scrape out the ‘noodles’.

Enjoy with your favorite sauce or dish!

Microwave:

Don’t oil or season your squash.

Place the prepared squash, fleshy-side down, in a microwave-safe dish. You may only be able to cook 1/2 of the squash at a time depending on the size of your microwave.

Add about 1/2 inch of water to the dish.

Microwave on high for 10-20 minutes, checking every 3-5 minutes for tenderness. The cooked squash should dent easily when you push your finger into the skin. The skin will also start to darken a bit.

Let cool slightly and then use a fork to scrape out the ‘noodles’.

Season to taste and enjoy with your favorite sauce or dish!

Crockpot:

Hang on to your britches because this is probably the most simple way to cook Spaghetti Squash…

You just need to clean your squash and poke some holes in the skin… don’t cut it in half or anything!

Just put the whole squash your crockpot and cover with a lid. NO WATER NEEDED although I think a little broth may add a bit of flavor.

Cook on LOW for 6-8 hours or on HIGH for 3-4 hours, just until tender. The cooked squash should dent easily when you push your finger into the skin. The skin will also start to darken a bit.

Let cool slightly and slice in half. Scoop out the seeds and then use a fork to scrape out the ‘noodles’.

Season to taste and enjoy with your favorite sauce or dish!


kids learn to cook


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Single-Serve Hot Cocoa

Craving something sweet and warm on a cold day? Try this single-serve version of The Best Hot Cocoa and you can be sipping on a warm cup of delicious hot cocoa in just a couple of minutes! Feel free to use non-fat milk and/or try it with almond milk and omit the sugar to sweeten it with your favorite low-calorie sweetener after microwaving! Continue reading “Single-Serve Hot Cocoa”

No-Bake Peanut Butter Pie

This recipe is very simple to make and can be put into a homemade graham cracker crust or a chocolate crust.

Continue reading “No-Bake Peanut Butter Pie”

The Best Hot Cocoa

I remember learning to make this on a wood stove when I was young. We had to be really careful not to let it get too hot and scorch or the whole thing would ruin… I miss those days! Well, some parts of them. We usually only had hot cocoa or hot tea on really cold days. We would get a cup before we left the house to walk to the bus stop which really was at least 1/2 mile uphill! The warmth in our bellies would help us get up the hill but we were always happy to see the old bus come clanking down the dirt road.

This is probably my favorite hot cocoa recipe although it does take a little bit of time and patience to make it… that just seems to make it better though. It’s really good to enjoy on a cold day or after coming in from playing in the snow which is something we don’t get to do here in Florida.  Continue reading “The Best Hot Cocoa”

Caramel Pecan Candies

I just have to give in to my sweet tooth every now and then, especially around the holidays. I try to save the rich calorie-laden treats for when we have parties and get-togethers so I don’t end up eating them all by myself! These are always a winner! Continue reading “Caramel Pecan Candies”

Made From Scratch Vanilla Pudding

This is so easy to make that you may never make pudding from a box again!

Made From Scratch Vanilla Pudding

Made From Scratch Vanilla Pudding printable recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 c. milk, scalded
  • 1/2 c. milk
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 2 1/2 t. flour
  • 1/4 t. salt
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 T. butter
  • 2 t. vanilla

Directions:

Blend half of the milk with the sugar, flour, and salt.

Add the hot milk and bring to a boil.

Cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly.

Add the 3 egg yolks and whisk well.

Cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly.

Remove from heat add the butter and vanilla.

Cover and cool slightly.

Chill in refrigerator.

Cocoa In A Crockpot

Just another recipe I found floating around in my Holiday Binder… we love to serve Hot Cocoa when we have a Polar Express Party and this is one of the recipes I have used in the past although we normally prefer to use our Hot Cocoa recipe. This one is super simple and delicious though.

Try serving it with some Chocolate-Dipped Goodies for an extra special treat!

Continue reading “Cocoa In A Crockpot”

Santa’s Top 10 Favorite Cookies That Can Be Made Ahead of Time!

santas-top-10-pin.pngI don’t know if Santa will be visiting your house anytime soon but I think he just might stop here for a handful of cookies. My kiddos love the tradition of leaving cookies for Santa although I suspect that it may be because they get to help sample the cookies.

This year I was determined to have a little bit less stress around the holidays but sometimes life seems to just happen around you. Our new house has been one thing after another and I really wasn’t sure just what else might happen before Christmas so I really tried to get things prepped ahead of time.

One thing I did was to make a TON of freezer meals, 35+ Freezer Meals In One Day!, and I also worked on adding printable recipes to all of my existing recipes on the blog as well as to the new recipes I’ve been posting. I’ve also gotten all of my recipes from my recipe box scheduled to post and I will continue to work on some of the others I have scattered around and packed up just as soon as I can.

This is so much easier than trying to keep your screen open in the kitchen… I apologize that I didn’t do this earlier! I also went ahead and made a bunch of Freezer Cookies! (Working on that post too!) 

I’m not completely against using store-bought cookie dough but I feel that homemade is ALWAYS better if you can. With these recipes, you CANI normally like to roll most of my cookie dough into small balls and flash freeze to make it easier to only pull out what I need. You may want to experiment with these recipes or divide them into smaller batches before freezing. Check out this article HERE for more information about freezing different kinds of cookie dough!

Continue reading “Santa’s Top 10 Favorite Cookies That Can Be Made Ahead of Time!”

Rice Krispie Treats

These are so easy to make and I know people have been making them for ages but I found the recipe in my binder and thought I’d share it. These also work well for making different shapes and for using when making fancy cake decorations! There are a million things you can add into these to make them a little extra special so let your imagination go… the kids love helping with these too! Continue reading “Rice Krispie Treats”

Funnel Cakes

I went to a vendor event recently and they had funnel cakes… I LOVE FUNNEL CAKES, so of course, I had to get one but then after seeing how much they cost I remembered I had a recipe in my old recipe box so I can make them at home.

My older kids loved funnel cakes too so we made them on a fairly regular basis before moving to Florida. I know they aren’t the healthiest treat but they will be OK for every now and then. They can be a little tricky to make as you really need to swirl the batter to get the right texture but once you get the hang of it you’ll find that they are fun to make.

I know that traditionally they are sprinkled with 10x sugar but you can also try them with fruit and whipped cream or a Cinnamon Sugar mixture.

Continue reading “Funnel Cakes”

Chocolate-Dipped Goodies

This recipe can be adapted for so many uses from those candy-coated spoons, to pretzel sticks and even marshmallows or cookies. The kids always have a ball helping with this and this is one of our favorite activities when we are preparing for a Polar Express Party. These are also great for gift-giving. Kids have a lot of fun helping with these treats! Continue reading “Chocolate-Dipped Goodies”

Ms. Shirley’s Hot Apple Cider

We had some of this at a dance the other night and Ms. Shirley was kind enough to share her recipe with me. There are many different things you can add to this to make it ‘yours’ and I’ve included some add-ins at the bottom of the recipe. You can also heat this on the stove instead of a crockpot.

Ms. Shirley’s Hot Apple Cider

Ms. Shirley’s Hot Apple Cider

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 c. apple cider
  • 1/4 – 1/2 c. Mrs. Butterworth’s syrup
  • 2 cinnamon sticks

Directions:

Place all ingredients in a large crockpot and heat until warm.

Serve hot!

Add-ins:

I love the hot apple cider that they serve at the Biltmore Estate in NC. You can add in a couple of these or just one or two to spice up your cider a little bit.

  • use real maple syrup instead of Mrs. Butterworth’s syrup
  • use 1/4 c. brown sugar in place of syrup
  • 1/2 c. orange juice
  • 2 t. cinnamon instead of cinnamon sticks
  • 4-6 cloves or 1-2 t. ground cloves
  • 1/4-1/2 t. allspice
  • a pinch of nutmeg
  • a pinch of salt