Sunday, July 8, 2012

Zucchini Turkey Meatballs with Spaghetti Squash

My mom had made this dish awhile back (minus the zucchini) and I loved it.  She got the recipe from the Whole Living website.  The original link is here.

I modified the original recipe to add the zucchini in so because it made it so moist I added another 2 tbsp of bread crumbs.  The sauce and the meatballs were delicious. 

The spaghetti squash came out mushy.  I don't know if its because I cooked too long...too short...the squash was too ripe...not ripe enough.  Who knows.  Spaghetti Squash = 1 .... Me = 0.  It kicked my butt.  So I just ended up eating the mixture by itself.

I'll try again to see if I can redeem myself or if someone can tell me the error of my ways.


  • 1 spaghetti squash (about 3 pounds) -- I used 2 smaller ones...that's all the grocery store had
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
  • 1/2 ounce grated Parmesan cheese (3 tablespoons)
  •  3 tablespoons dried breadcrumbs
  • 8 ounces lean ground turkey  -- I used 1lb
  • 8 ounces mixed mushrooms, such as shiitake, cremini, and oyster, cut 1/4 inch thick (about 3 cups)
  • 1 cup homemade or store-bought low-sodium chicken stock
  • 4 ounces baby spinach (about 5 cups), washed well
  • 1 cup of grated zucchini


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Season cut sides of squash with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bake, cut sides down, on a baking sheet until tender, about 45 minutes. Let stand until cool enough to handle. Scrape flesh into strands using a fork. Let drain, covered to keep warm, in a colander set over a bowl.  --- I had to bake the squash whole because I couldn't cut it.  Maybe this was my mistake?
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 teaspoon oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Cook onion and garlic, stirring, until soft but not brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add oregano; cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Divide mixture between 2 bowls.
  3. Stir 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons cheese into 1 bowl of onion-garlic mixture. Mix in breadcrumbs, turkey, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper using your hands. Form mixture into 12 balls.
  4. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Brown meatballs, turning, 4 to 6 minutes; transfer to a plate. Add remaining teaspoon oil to skillet. Cook mushrooms, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper, adding a few tablespoons water if skillet browns too quickly, until soft and beginning to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Add remaining bowl of onion-garlic mixture, meatballs, and stock; bring to gentle simmer. Cook, partially covered, until meatballs are cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. Add spinach; cook until just wilted, about 1 minute.
  5. Divide squash and meatball mixture into 4 servings. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

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