This Butternut Turkey Baked Spaghetti makes the perfect warming meal for a chilly fall day. Instead of traditional noodles, this one calls for spiralized butternut squash.
I love it when I come up with recipes that I just can’t wait to share. This is one of them. I have been backloading recipes so I have plenty so share while I am traveling the next month, but this one moved to the front of the list after making it twice last week.
So delicious! My brother stopped by hungry the other day, and I halfheartedly offered him the last slice. Then I was really disappointed I wouldn’t get it for dinner again.
It’s only September 6th, and I have gone through 4 full winter squashes since the 1st. To be honest, I don’t really reserve winter squashes for the “right season” — I am glad these beauties can be enjoyed year round.
Butternut squash noodles are a tasty substitute for pasta or other grain side dishes. I have been making them for a while, and I love to serve them with my Lightened Up Chicken Tikka Masala. The sweet noodles are delicious with the spicy tikka masala sauce!
I like to substitute vegetable “noodles” in place of starches to lower the calories of dishes, and also because I feel better digestion wise when I am eating mostly grain-free (as discovered on my recent Whole30 experience). Since I finished the Whole30, I have started eating grains (mostly oatmeal, and usually just in cookies or rice crackers), but many more meals are grain free.
Besides butternut noodles, I also make zucchini or beet noodles for hot dishes.
With my old spiralizer, hard vegetables, like butternut and beets, were a bit difficult to make– but I recently bought an OXO, and the blade is so sharp these only take 4 or 5 minutes to make, including peeling the squash.
In case you missed it, I recently posted a Spiralized Cucumber Chicken Waldorf Salad. Cucumbers are possibly my favorite and most frequently spiralized veggie!
Tips for Butternut Turkey Baked Spaghetti
- If you don’t have a spiralizer, try turning this recipe into a “lasagna” by using a mandoline or a sharp knife to very thinly slice the squash. I haven’t tried this method, but I can’t see why this wouldn’t yield a similarly delicious result.
- If you’d like to include pasta, try my favorite gluten free pasta, Ancient Harvest Quinoa Pasta.
- This makes a perfect make-ahead meal. Put together the casserole, and refrigerate up to a day before baking. The instructions include a modified baking time if the casserole has fully cooled prior to baking.
Butternut Turkey Baked “Spaghetti” (Grain Free)
- 1/2 butternut squash large, the solid end (or 2 small squashes)
- 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
- sea salt and black pepper to taste
Turkey Spaghetti Sauce
- 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup onion chopped
- 2 bell peppers 1 used 1 green, 1 red, chopped
- 7 ounces Jones Dairy Farm All Natural No Antibiotics Ever Golden Brown Chicken Sausages
- 1 25 ounce tomato basil sauce diced
- 2 cups zucchini chopped, 1 medium zucchini
- 1 15 ounce can black olives sliced
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese shredded
- 1 cup parmesan cheese shredded
- 1/2 cup parsley chopped finely, optional, garnish
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Spiralize butternut squash with the larger noodle blade. (I recommend the OXO Sprializer ).
- Place "noodles" on a large cookie sheet, drizzle with olive oil, and lightly season with sea salt and pepper.
- Use your hands to spread the oil around the noodles. Bake for 15 minutes, until softened but still slightly underdone.
- While the noodles are baking, prepare spaghetti sauce.
- Brown sausage in a skillet for about 10 minutes over medium high heat, then remove from pan and slice.
- In the same skillet, add olive oil and minced onion. Saute for 5-10 minutes over medium-high heat, until onions are translucent.
- Add bell peppers, and continue to cook for another 5 minutes.
- Add the tomato basil sauce, olives, and zucchini, and continue to simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside. Resist the urge to "thin" out the sauce- you will want it really thick so you can "slice" the casserole.
- In a large baking dish (I used an rounded rectangular 10 x 8 inch baking pan, and this recipe perfectly fills it), begin by layering in 1/2 of the butternut noodles.
- On top of the noodles, layer 1/2 of the sausage sauce, followed by 1/2 of the cheese.
- Add 1 more layer of noodles, sauce, and cheese.
- If baking the dish right away, bake it in the still heated oven for 30 minutes, covered (until the sauce is bubbling). Uncover the dish, and lightly brown the cheese, 5-10 additional minutes.
- The dish can also be made ahead and baked up to a day later. If the dish has full cooled prior to baking, preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit, and bake for 45-55 minutes covered (until sauce is bubbling). Remove the cover, and brown the cheese for an additional 5-10 minutes.
- Garnish with parsley, and allow to "set" for 10-15 minutes if you want the slices to come out nicely. When it's very hot, the slices won't hold as well.
Other Healthy Winter Squash Recipes:
- Apple, Mushroom and Sausage Stuffed Acorn Squash, by The Pretend Baker
- Butternut Squash Enchilada Casserole, by Making Thyme for Health
- Broccoli and Cheese Stuffed Spaghetti Squash, by Domestic Superhero
- Crockpot Chicken Sausage Spaghetti Sauce with Spaghetti Squash, by Vitamin Sunshine
- Butternut, Black Bean and Spinach Enchiladas, by Vitamin Sunshine
- Butternut Spinach Salad, by Vitamin Sunshine
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Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine says
I love this idea!! You know the one veggie I still have not spiralized is a butternut :O I know!!! I need to get on that this winter season!
It’s so good! One of my favs. My husband prefers it to rice now with a lot of dishes.
lindsay Cotter says
Okay, I must spiralize butternut! on my list next! YUM!
It was one of my firsts 🙂 It’s so delicious! If you bake it directly on a cookie sheet at 425 for about 25 minutes, it gets crunchy and really sweet where it hits the pan– those are my favorite bits!
Sarah @ Girl Adulting says
A.) This is gorgeous, B.) I have spiralized many a veggie, but never butternut squash. Is it difficult? (I always struggle peeling the damn things!), C.) I am so happy this contains olives. I’m surrounded by several olive-haters, and I love the italian-olive combo so much!
Hi Sarah! Thank you so much for your kind words. I have a Paderno spiralizer, and yes, it’s totally hard to spiralize a butternut squash with it. I am sweating by the time I am finished (but I did it anyway). I recently bought an OXO spiralizer, and it sticks to the counter SO MUCH BETTER, so it’s actually pretty easy– still requires a little more elbow grease than spiralizing a cucumber, but definitely worth it. Peeling it is difficult always! I recently bought a no-name brand vegetable peeler that is so sharp it has made it much easier- but I couldn’t tell you where to buy one!
I love olives too. My brother and sister in law hate them, and they were visiting the last time I made this. Their kids picked them off and I added them to my plate 🙂
GiGi Eats says
I cannot even describe my lust for this dish!!!!!
Just seeing the photos makes me want to make another one. Happening soon again, and probably a lot this winter season 🙂
I have tried this. It is amazing.
Thanks for letting me know Cheryl! It’s one of my new favorites. So warming and comforting!
Thanks for sharing.