I follow a number of awesome food bloggers and they constantly inspire me to try out new foods and dishes. Recently, I noticed that spaghetti squash was popping up a lot on different sites as a gluten-free and high-fiber replacement for noodles so I decided to give it a whirl.
As I was preparing to cook my lovely squash, I began to have some serious doubts. You see, sometimes when I am making something new for my family a little voice pops up in my head that says “the kids probably aren’t going to like this….in fact they’ll probably hate it….maybe I should make them something else to be sure they are getting enough to eat.” Do you ever do this? I seriously contemplated preparing a pot of regular noodles (that I know the kids love) just to hedge my bets.
But after staring at the yellow squash for a few minutes I decided to go for it. Ultimately, I want my family (myself included) to broaden our experience of food and to continue to be open to trying new things. If I relent and make a separate and often nutritionally lacking alternative, I’m essentially sending the message that healthy food is an option instead of the best and only choice.
According to Dr. T. Colin Campbell, author of The China Study; “Children are our future and it just makes common sense that the food they become accustomed to will likely be the food that they prefer for the rest of their lives. In today’s society most children consume foods that will produce serious adult onset diseases down the road, and they do not eat the foods that may offer dramatic protection.”
And in his book “Disease Proof Your Child“ Dr. Joel Fuhrman states: “As parents, we want what is best for our children. We would never intentionally harm them- in fact, we make sure to get them the best possible care, read to them, play with them, and ensure their safety at home, at school and at play. But when it comes to feeding them, somehow we don’t know what’s best……Most children in developed countries eat less than 2% of their diet from natural plant foods and move into adulthood eating 90% of their caloric intake from dairy products, white flour, sugar and oil.”
So I cooked the squash in the oven, whipped up my favourite tomato sauce on the stove top and lovingly served up heaping bowls of spaghetti squash noodles. And what was the outcome? Well, the older 2 took a few good bites (with slightly pained expressions) and declared that it wasn’t their favourite dish as they scraped the remainder into the wet garbage. And the toddler put a bite in his mouth, made a disgusted face and spit it all back out into his bowl. He even dramatically scraped the yellow bits off of his tongue with his fingers. Not good!
But that isn’t going to stop me. Oh sure we’ll still have regular noodles from time to time but I will keep offering up unique plant-based foods for my family to experience. My hope is that they will learn to love vegetables, fruits, nuts and whole grains as much as the less healthy alternatives and continue to enjoy nutritionally rich diets throughout their lives.
Oh and I should mention that the kids were mysteriously hungry shortly after dinner so we had a huge bowl of popcorn about an hour later…..you might want to keep that in mind when you prepare this dish the first time ; )
Spaghetti Squash Noodles
Preheat oven to 375. Cut the stem off of the squash and then slice it in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and guts. Brush the insides with olive oil and a bit of salt and pepper and place the halves cut side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake for 40-50 minutes depending on the size of your squash. You will know that it’s ready if the “noodles” separate easily with a fork. Allow to cool for 5 minutes and then scrape the inside of the squash with a fork to produce the noodles.
Place the noodles in a bowl and top with your favourite sauce.
Enjoy! (and keep trying)
17 thoughts on “Spaghetti Squash Noodles and Why I Keep Trying”
I’ve actually made a similar recipe and we both enjoyed it.
You deserve a medal for your efforts with the little ones.
See you soon. Love, Mom
Sent from my iPad
My kids loved spaghetti squash the first time I served it about 15 years ago. Never have used tomato sauce just butter or olive oil and Parmesan cheese.
Lori Leigh Wilson wrote:
> Lori Leigh Wilson posted: “I follow a number of awesome food bloggers > and they constantly inspire me to try out new foods and dishes. > Recently, I noticed that spaghetti squash was popping up a lot on > different sites as a gluten-free and high-fiber replacement for > noodles so I decid” >
Hmmmm….maybe plain would be better. I’ll give that a shot! Thanks for commenting!
Lori, I make this dish too but add stir fried veg and shrimp and mix with the tomato sauce and then bake in the oven with a little bit of cheese on top. The kids eat it like lasagna. I realize not vegan but still gluten free. I experimented with spaghetti squash for a while and the kids like it better when it is mixed with the sauce rather than just on top. Keep trying!!
What a great suggestion Melanie! I am totally going to try that (minus the shrimp) the next time I make it.
Hey Lori, I’m still laughing…..can just picture their faces!! Had a vivid picture of the looks on our guys faces when they were young and I fed them some new, and especially a vegetable, dish. Actually, come to think of it, had the same reaction from them at Thanksgiving when I presented them with Zucchini Lasagna!! Love, Jackie
Ha! That’s too funny! Thanks for sharing Jackie – the thought of your boys turning down any of your amazing cooking is nuts : )
LMAO! My parents tortured me with this crap too .. it’s edible but that is about all 😉
Tortured huh? Harsh! I’m curious – are there any veggie dishes that you enjoy that you’d be willing to share?
Loads! But my vege tastes are quite simple .. I confess the only way we made the squash palatable was with exceedingly unhealthy qtys of butter and salt lol .. bearing in mind cooking styles have changed a lot since back then, it may be a tiny bit nicer .. maybe? What sort of veges were you thinking of, any in particular? I’m fond of most so have a vast repertoire to share 🙂
Ha! Maybe butter and salt is the way to go : ) I’d love a recipe share! I’m not picky- what’s your best recipe?
http://wp.me/pRBXZ-1vi I am a big fan of couscous and Orzo, a great way to sneak veges and variety into a diet .. this is one of my faves ..
Thanks so much Joan!
Sweet! Thanks so much for sharing…I can’t wait to try it!
Hiya! Not sure if this helps now, or if you’ll even try it again, but I found adding a bit of water to the bottom of the pan and cooking the squash longer created softer “noodles” that were more familiar in the mouth. It gets rid of the crunch or bite in the squash.
Hope that helps! 😃
Great suggestion! Thanks Lis!