Turkey Meatballs With Spaghetti Squash

Making these turkey meatballs with spaghetti squash is so EASY. It’s one of my husband’s all time favorites too! This meal is hearty without being too indulgent, and is also super healthy when made with organic ingredients. The best part? It can be on your table in less than an hour. My favorite time-saving trick is to use a really good jar of tomato sauce like Yellow Barn. It’s organic, biodynamic and tastes so good you could eat right out of the jar by the spoon! (Video is below to see how I do it! – I had so much fun making this live on NBC’s Charlotte Today)

MeatBalls

I ALWAYS buy turkey meat that is not raised with antibiotics and from humane farms – if it isn’t available at the market I’m at, I don’t buy it and choose something else eat. The amount of antibiotics used to raise animals is a huge concern because it’s causing superbugs in our ecosystem. These superbugs are resistant to lifesaving antibiotics and threaten the entire human population. In 2011, 30 million pounds of antibiotics were sold to the farming industry—nearly four times more than were sold to treat people! 

If you’ve been watching the news, you might have seen that the FDA has announced a new recommendation regarding the use of antibiotics in livestock. I’m glad they are finally waking up, but the measure is weak because it is completely voluntary. It puts the onus on the pharmaceutical industry to initiate the changes. This is like asking Phillip Morris to voluntarily reduce the use of nicotine in cigarettes. Yeah right.

So what do we need to do? This announcement does little to change the status quo – make sure you are choosing poultry labeled “raised without antibiotics” at the grocery store and at restaurants to stay safe.

4.9 from 15 reviews

Spaghetti Squash with Turkey Meatballs
 
Prep time

Cook time

Total time

 

Serves: 4

Ingredients
  • 1 spaghetti squash
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • ¼ tsp dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp dried rosemary
  • ¼ tsp dried thyme
  • ¼ tsp dried sage
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • black pepper to taste
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1 jar of your favorite organic tomato sauce
  • ½ cup shredded raw parmesan cheese (for topping)

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Slice spaghetti squash in half and remove all seeds with spoon
  3. Place spaghetti squash face down on large baking sheet, add ½ cup water and cover with foil
  4. Cook spaghetti squash for 45 mins
  5. While spaghetti squash is cooking, mix together remaining ingredients (except cheese) in a large bowl
  6. Make 2 tbsp size meatballs with hands and place on a greased cookie sheet
  7. Bake for 20 mins (along side the spaghetti squash) (turning half way through)
  8. Remove turkey meatballs from oven, and place into a pan with sauce, warm sauce thoroughly
  9. Remove spaghetti squash and scrap insides
  10. Place spaghetti squash in a bowl and pour sauce and meatballs on top
  11. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and enjoy!

Notes
***Please choose all organic ingredients if possible***

 

Now it’s time to watch me make this dish on live TV: (Big thanks to my teammate Krista and Whole Foods Charlotte for providing all the ingredients!) I love how the hostess Ramona Holloway knows how I feel about GMOs :) 

Video notes:

  1. It may take a few seconds for the video to start.
  2. If the video player has a black bar covering up part of the screen hit the little “CC” button at the bottom right to turn off closed captioning before you play the video (if you like).


 

What’s your guy or gal’s favorite “healthy” meal. I would love to know.

XOXO,

Food Babe

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70 Responses to “Turkey Meatballs With Spaghetti Squash”

  1. Bufalo Bob

    I love your recipes and follow you on facebook. Eating healthy is tough with all the crap corporate food companies use but we are making a concerted effort to change our dietary lifestyles. It is important that people change the way they view dietary changes. Instead of being a death toll to their favorite foods, it should be a new adventure where all the tastes and flavors of the world are now part of their culinary palette. -BB

    Reply
  2. anonymous

    I live in Charlotte and was wondering where you buy your turkey meat? I keep seeing on the packages at HT “natural flavors added”…Which we know are not natural. I have been getting it at Costco (Butterball) brand but I am sure they are not humanly raised. Please help.

    Reply
    • Food Babe (to anonymous)

      Whole Foods , Healthy Home Market & Earth Fare have quality ground turkey. Hope that helps!

      Reply
    • Heidi F. (to anonymous)

      I shop mostly at Earthfare. They pride themselves on fresh meat. Fresh being key word. It’s not organic. The source for the chicken in the case feeds their livestock GMO feed, it says it right on their website. You still have to do your research! They do have frozen organic meats which are kind of hidden. I buy organic over the “fresh” stuff they have in the case. I was really disappointed after I did some investigating. I am sure the turkey in the case is the same as the chicken. I use to buy both.

      Reply
  3. Joel

    I’d love to see the nutritional info on this recipe… looks great

    Reply
  4. Nikkie

    I started making a very similar recipe last year, with the exception that I made my own tomato sauce from scratch, and I’d put the meat in the sauce instead of making meat balls. Since there’s just two of us I would make the entire dish, then mix it all together, divide in half and then freeze half of it. The following week I would have a very quick healthy meal that just needed to be put into a pot and warmed up!

    Reply
  5. Kate Lawler

    I love turkey meatballs! I add grated carrot to mine to add a little more flavor and moisture. Yum!

    My favorite meal lately is Shepard’s Pie – made healthy. Saute onions and ground turkey and dried thyme, S&P for the bottom layer. Sometimes I add mushrooms too. Add whatever kind of veggies you like on top of that – personally my favorite is corn or homemade creamed corn. Layer sliced white cheddar cheese on top of that, and then – here’s the kicker – mashed sweet potatoes on top instead of white potatoes. I sprinkle the top with dried thyme and then bake until hot and yummy!

    Reply
  6. Angela

    Thanks for the great recipe! I am wondering if you have investigated the brand Praire Farms. They say their dairy products have no antibiotics and hormones. I would love this to be true because the milk prices are about $3.00 cheaper than organic milk. Please help! Thank you so much I love following you!

    Reply
  7. Lisa

    Ugh. I just found out the Ground Turkey I usually buy has BHA and BHT added to preserve freshness. Really? Way to ruin my turkey meatballs!

    Reply
  8. Diane Petryk

    Sorry…what IS spaghetti squash? Is it a pasta product or squash? Never heard of it in Michighan!

    Reply
    • Food Babe (to Diane Petryk)

      Diane – Watching the video at the end of this post might help – I explain what it is and how to make it.

      Reply
    • Samantha (to Diane Petryk)

      It’s grown in Michigan. I’m sure you can find some local and organic

      Reply
  9. Nikkie

    It’s a squash that you can get in the produce section of your grocery store. After cooked, it flakes out of it’s outer rind in spaghetti-like strands.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-AK1KRZG8pg

    Check out the above video, but I wouldn’t recommend making it in the microwave, use the oven.

    Reply
  10. Valerie

    What organic marinara sauce do you find tasty? I usually make my own but it would be nice to have some on hand. THanks!

    Reply
    • Food Babe (to Valerie)

      I love Yellow Barn (my latest fav!) – it’s organic and biodynamic. Also Eden makes a great sauce. Both do not have added sugar either! http://amzn.to/1bEKWy8

      Reply
    • Katie | Healthnut Foodie (to Valerie)

      Trader Joe’s sells a very tasty AND affordable organic tomato-basil sauce. I’m pretty sure it is the Muir Glen brand, which I also love!

      Reply
      • Diane (to Katie | Healthnut Foodie)

        I personally won’t buy any product that I know is owned by a company who spent beaucoup bucks against the labeling initiative in California. Muir Glen is one, and they are owned by General Mills. I make my own spaghetti sauce from scratch, using Roma tomatoes (which I have removed the peel from via a boiling water method, cut up and freeze them.)

  11. christie

    Spagetti squash is super easy to grow too. Save your seeds and , plant and grow your own. Then cook it and freeze it for the winter. Yummy all year long.

    Reply
  12. dividing cricker

    egg plant parmesan 1 large egg plant sliced 1/4in and pealed / fry or bake slices in a 400 oven ,or in a oiled fry pan , I mix a cracker and rice flour , use a egg wash and coat they fry on med heat , I use glutino crackers regular /smashed,,, cook egg p golden brown . I use a 9×11 pan with a 2in side , I layer the egg p 1 layer then add regatta small spoon full dotting the layer, mottserella graded and layered, then warm mix of organic paste and sauce , I use 1 paste and 2 jars of sauce warmed on the stove for 20 minutes with spice , I use marjoram , Cavenders no msg , and Italian mix , then layer again topping with cheese /sometimes burns, top cheese with sause then add a little before serving ,,, better cooled then reheated gives the dish time to rest . This freezes well / reheat 1/2 hr on 350 in small portions//// I researched over due births , a girls was 2 weeks over due in a lot of distress . Egg plant Parmesan was recommended , I made it , she at it and had that baby the next day … She had contractions 1 hr after eating So If your pregnant…. watch out …. maybe it will get you pregnant if your not !!!! try using all organic /nongmo products /gluten free / sugar free good luck

    Reply
  13. Amy

    Roast the squash seeds alongside the squash. Now you have a built in appetizer while you finish preparing the dish.

    Reply
  14. Lydia

    Do you really know what is in your turkey?????
    Get real !!!poop is in your turkey I mean organic poop and you worry about antibiotics….
    Bon Appetite

    Reply
  15. Joanna

    How does one know if the meat they are buying is humanely raised? This is very important to me as I’ve become more aware of our meat farming industry. Thanks!

    Reply
    • Heidi F. (to Joanna)

      Check the website. Surprisingly they post things like that. There are also different labels for this, I see them at Whole Foods. Some of the meats have “global animal partnership” labels with animal welfare ratings.

      Reply
    • Karen Scribner (to Joanna)

      All-vegetarian feed for turkeys and chickens is inhumane. These birds eat greens, seeds AND bugs and worms when feeding themselves.

      Reply
  16. Chrissy

    Nice recipe!

    Does anyone have any recommendations for a tomato free sauce? Or an alternative to normal spaghetti sauce?

    Just discovered that I’m allergic to tomatoes… and I’m Italian. =(

    Reply
    • jenny (to Chrissy)

      My girls have started loving pesto over tomato sauce, even for our pizza! (We are partial to Buitoni but that does have dairy and whey – pesto is very simple to make if you have a good food processor, keeps for a week.)

      Reply
    • Karen Scribner (to Chrissy)

      Not to worry, tomatoes are a New World food taken from South America to Europe by explorers. Try real butter with the same spice used in tomato sauces plus lots of grated-by-you Romano cheese.

      Reply
  17. Sakshi

    Thanks for gr8 recepies
    Was wondering what is spaghetti squash ? Where we can buy ?

    Reply
  18. Morgan

    Hey Vani! Can’t wait to try this recipe. I make your burritos and I absolutely love them. I was just wondering .. would you eat something that was certified non-gmo but not certified organic? Thanks!

    Reply
    • Food Babe (to Morgan)

      Depends what it is :)

      Reply
      • Karen Scribner (to Food Babe)

        Check out http://www.nongmoproject.org. I heard the asst director, Courtney Pineau speak at the Heirloom Seed festival. She said that organic food can be grown from GMO seeds. That is why they do the verification.

      • Morgan (to Food Babe)

        Well the two examples that I get a lot and am obsessed with are silk almond milk and kind bars. Those are the only things that I can think of.

  19. connie curtis

    have you read foodopoly.. definitely a book you would like.. ..

    Reply
    • Food Babe (to connie curtis)

      Yes! I actually had lunch with the author earlier this year. She is an amazing inspiration.

      Reply
      • connie curtis (to Food Babe)

        Awesome. I was surprised by some of the information. I do things changing for people that I have know for a while and never thought they would eat differently. Quick question where is information on the cooler that you use to travel. I need to look at . I think its time to buy it.

        thanks,
        connie

  20. Barbara

    I love spaghetti squash but my friend is allergic to tomatoes so instead I use an alfredo sauce (made from scratch – all organic). I also add carrots, onions, broccoli, mushrooms and any other veggies that I have on hand. Instead of turkey, I use grass fed ground beef, spicy chicken sausage, ground elk or ground buffalo

    Reply
  21. Erika Henry

    I love spaghetti squash and I usually make spaghetti squash with chicken meatballs using ground chicken.

    Reply
  22. Richard Davey

    hey vani I have a health and wellness program I do on a am station in Bonham tx I would love to have you on let me know how to reach you! I share your info with my listners! please let me hear from you! Richard

    Reply
  23. Katie Eaton

    Hi! I just wanted you to know that I absolutely LOVE you! Your site has become a online bible for me, its been LIFE CHANGING!!! I just wanted to say thank you, for all that you do. I’ve been using the info I learn from you and I bring it to Policy Council with me (I’m chairman of PC) I’m hoping to help educate young moms. So thank you for being my inspiration! :)

    Reply
  24. Richard Davey

    hey vani
    My name is Richard Davey I have a health and wellness show I do once a week here in Bonham TX. I share a lot of your info and was wondering if I could have a call in one day with you let me hear from you ! The call letters of the station are kfyn 1420 am. Richard

    Reply
  25. Robert Adams

    Really? You want us to buy spaghetti sauce that’s $10 a jar? I love your product suggestions but they do tend to be very high priced. Organic food needs to be affordable if we want to change the world.

    Reply
    • Karen Scribner (to Robert Adams)

      Organic foods are high priced because they do not get the gov’t subsidies. You are paying for everyone else’s cheap food.

      Reply
      • Robert Adams (to Karen Scribner)

        Not that high. It’s easy to find an organic sauce in the $2 to $4 range. I just get tired of hearing people say “I can’t afford organic food”, which ignores the true cost to health and environment of chemfood. The reality is most people only see the price tag, but that is going down. I do wish government subsidies would shift to sustainable agriculture, but that goes against a lot of very powerful moneyed interests.

    • assistant to Food Babe (krista) (to Robert Adams)

      You can use your favorite sauce in the recipe!

      Reply
  26. Chris Dieter

    Thanks for the recipe! The more and more I look at the subject of what meat to eat, I find my way back to grass fed/finished herbivores (cow, buffalo, goat, deer, sheep). I find it odd that you haven’t came to the same conclusion. Have you read, “Folks This Ain’t Normal” by Joel Salatin? Or “Meat: A Benign Extravagance” by Simon Fairlie? I like the idea of going back to a more “normal” meat eating way of life before the advent of “cheap grain.” Once you understand the ecological toll that has been done to feed grains to hogs and birds (chickens and turkeys) and cows too, you will reach for something different. You will choose a HERBAVORE that lived its whole life on grass! Keep up the good fight Vani!

    Reply
  27. Christine

    I saw for your recipe to use Raw Parmesan cheese. Lately, I’ve been reading articles that Organic Valley’s Raw cheddar cheese is not really raw. So how do you know if the cheese you’re buying is truly raw?

    Reply
  28. Paul

    I clicked the link for the Yellow Barn tomato sauce, There was not a list of the ingredients. I do not purchase any products unless I can read the ingredient list and like what I read.
    Can you post a picture of the jars nutritional label with the ingredient list?
    Thank you, Paul.

    Reply
  29. laramealor.com

    I have never had spaghetti squash. I may have to give it a try.

    Reply
  30. Jennifer

    Delicious. I love that the meatballs have no breadcrumbs. I got all of my ingredients from WholeFoods. While I love this dish, I would have to say my favorite dish, however, is just some tomatoes thrown in a pan with olive oil, fresh basil, vidalia onion and crushed red pepper, toss it over some organic pasta (just a bit; more sauce than pasta) and a good glass of organic red wine on the side.

    Reply
  31. Robin

    Sounds so good. Wish I could eggs!!

    Reply
  32. eva

    Just made this amazing recipe. My fiancé and I loved it. Thank you so much for sharing such wonderful food with us all!

    Reply
  33. Kathy

    This is a general comment about ground turkey. I recently bought Butterball ground turkey from Costco and I was curious if they inject their birds with antibiotics or hormones. They assured me they didn’t…unless a bird was sick; then they took them from the flock, treated them and then were tested to make sure all traces of the antibiotic were gone. Good to know!

    Reply
  34. Lisa

    Just made this for dinner and got a ‘delicious’ from my husband…and me too!
    So easy and yummy. I have a wheat allergy, not severe but I can tell, and I feel so much better eating Spagetti Squash instead of pasta. We both love squash of any kind, so that helps! I have tried a few of your recipes and they’ve all been good. We have leftovers – we resisted seconds!- so we’ll have a lo cal dinner during the holidays, when there’s so many goodies around. Thanks again!

    Reply
  35. Louisa

    Not trying to trump your fab recipe, just add to the dialogue, but if you’re in the mood for meatballs try turkey, arugula, shallot and capers. I made this one time and it was devine and now a tired and true go to!

    Reply
  36. Dawna

    Hello,
    Great recipe but listed on step 5 it says to add all remaining ingredients except cheese, ,,,well you forgot to mention the sauce so I added the sauce in the meatball mixture….I found out the hard way but turned them into mini meatloaves using parchment paper. I don’t know if someone already mentioned this but assumed if they did you would have amended it already. Still turned out very good and healthy!

    Reply
  37. Shea

    Simple to make and delicious! Spaghetti has always been one of my LEAST favorite meals, but this recipe has converted me. Thanks!

    Reply
  38. Aimee

    FANTASTIC!!! delicious, so quick, easy, healthy, and inexpensive!

    Thank you!

    Reply
  39. Melissa

    Any suggestions to make meatballs without egg? My son is allergic to eggs.

    Reply
  40. Lara

    Delicious! Thank you ;-)

    Reply
  41. Kira

    That was so easy & delicious! Didn’t realize it would make so much. Great instructions, thank you!

    Reply
  42. Adrienne

    I previously sent you an email regarding the recipe for the Turkey Meatballs and Spachetti Squash. Well, please disregard, I found it by going to the top of your website and clicking on “Recipes.” Thank you very much

    Reply
  43. Mave

    Just made this and it’s AMAZING. I created my own sauce with spices and onions from an organic tomato sauce. I’ve never had spaghetti squash before, so good. Can’t wait to make it again. Thank you! :)

    Reply

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