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I’m calling this a spaghetti squash and turkey hash mostly because I’m not sure what else you’d call it. It’s got potatoes and it’s browned in a skillet, hash! I often see spaghetti squash used as a replacement for actual pasta but I’m not a fan of that. It’s not filling and it’s nowhere near as satisfying. So sweet potatoes make up the filling part of this recipe which makes it more of a meal and less of a disappointing side dish.
Everything in this recipe can be eaten at any point in your elimination diet, from phase one and forward. In the world outside of my elimination diet I would likely replace the ground turkey with the far more flavorful ground sausage but with the buttery goodness of the spaghetti sauce and enough salt and pepper you won’t even miss it. The key to elimination diet recipes is to never forget that you still have some seasoning options!
The main trick to adding flavor to this dish is to get the turkey and veggies properly browned. Without that it will likely be bland. Make sure you drain the turkey of its excess liquid and use a hot pan to get a nice color on everything. Brown the sweet potatoes by throwing them in the hot pan and then not touching them for three minutes before you stir and cover to finish the cooking. If they stick to the pan you can splash in just enough water to lift it up, just be mindful to not soak everything. Really just a splash should do.
Also, I’m a huge fan of using a big heavy cast iron skillet. I know not everyone has that option but if you have the means to buy a new pan I strongly recommend going old school. I understand all the hype now that I’ve tried one and it’s just about the only pan I ever use anymore. It really does make a difference especially when you want that good browned flavor. You don’t need an expensive one to start with, this one is under $30!
How to choose a spaghetti squash
When choosing a spaghetti squash you’ll want to find one that is firm, dry, and has a deep golden yellow color. Make sure it doesn’t have any squishy or cracked spots. You’ll also want to pick up a few and pick the heaviest one for its size. This is also a good strategy for many fruits and vegetables because it means they have the most juice and therfore the most flavor.
Spaghetti squash recipes, like this spaghetti squash and turkey hash, are often going to be made the same way. With you cooking the spaghetti squash seperately, shredding the insides, and then adding it into the rest of the recipe. You cannot use another squash in its place as this is the only squash with that distinct stringly texture.
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 2 large sweet potatoes chopped
- 1 yellow onion chopped
- 1 spaghetti squash (about 3 lb size if you can find it, I know sometimes the options are limited)
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 1 tsp dried rosemary
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp salt or to taste
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
- cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise
- scoop out seeds and pulp
- sprinkle inside of squash with olive oil and season liberally with salt and pepper
- place inside of squash side down on lined baking sheet, pierce top with fork to vent steam
- bake for 45-55 minutes until squash is tender and pulls apart easily with a fork to make the spaghetti strands
- while the squash is baking brown the turkey over medium heat
- remove turkey from pan, set aside, drain off any excess liquid, lower heat to medium low
- drizzle pan with olive oil, add chopped onions to the pan, cook until they sweat
- add sweet potatoes and seasonings, cover
- cook about 10 minutes until sweet potatoes are tender, if the hash starts to stick add a little water or chicken broth periodically
- mix in the spaghetti squash and serve hot