Slow Cooker Spaghetti Squash & Meatballs

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Slow cooker spaghetti squash and meatballs is the holy grail of easy, healthy, slow cooker dinners. You won’t spend all day cooking it (that’s the crock-pot’s job). Truthfully, you won’t spend more than 10 minutes prepping it. But you will spend all day dreaming about getting home to eat it.

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Try to count all of the ways that this recipe rules, and you’ll start to run out of fingers: make-it-on-a-school-night easy, extremely low prep, healthy, belly-filling, cooks itself in the crock-pot while you’re at work, not the same thing you’ve eaten every night this week, low carb, paleo-friendly, gluten free … This dish just slays any challenge you can throw at it. (And vegetarians, we see you thinking about that one box it’s not ticking — just sub in your fave frozen veggie meatballs.)

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All you need is a spaghetti squash – you know, that yellow thing on your countertop that you’ve been meaning to turn into faux pasta for a week now – your slow cooker, a jar of marinara sauce, and some frozen meatballs. (Any frozen meatball will do: chicken, beef, turkey, Tofurky.) This dish is convenience without compromise.

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Plop it all in the slow cooker, and you’ll come home to a crock-pot full of saucy, savory, slow-cooked meatballs and a mountain of fork-twirlable veggie “noodles”. The only difference you’ll notice between this dish and traditional spaghetti & meatballs is that you can’t really share a noodle Lady & The Tramp style — but you won’t want to share this anyways.

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Slow Cooker Spaghetti Squash and Meatballs


Serves 4
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Total Time: 4 Hours and 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 medium spaghetti squash
  • 1½ pounds frozen Italian meatballs
  • ½ small onion, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (24 oz) jar marinara sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons dried basil
  • ½ Tablespoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

Equipment

  • 6 quart slow cooker

Preparation

  1. Prepare the spaghetti squash: if the stem is long, carefully slice just below the flesh of the skin to remove it. Cut the spaghetti squash in half crosswise, and scoop out the seeds.
  2. Place the frozen meatballs into the bottom of the slow cooker and pour the marinara sauce over them. Add the minced onion, garlic, basil, oregano, salt, and pepper.
  3. Place the prepared squash, cut-side down, on top of the meatballs and sauce.
  4. Cover and cook on high heat for 3 – 4 hours, or low heat for 6 – 7 hours (or until the squash is soft).
  5. Remove the squash using tongs, and use a fork to scrape the strands of “spaghetti” away from the skin of the squash.
  6. Serve the spaghetti squash strands topped with sauce and meatballs. Garnish with parmesan cheese, if desired.
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We’ve been patting ourselves on the back a lot lately for lightening up our go-to indulgent dishes with spaghetti squash: cheesy broccolini spaghetti squash, spinach artichoke spaghetti squash, and spaghetti squash enchilada boats. Need even more spaghetti squash dinner ideas? We’ve got you covered! And please share your favorite ways to eat it with us, too.

Recipe adapted from All Day I Dream About Food.