If you’re interested in a dinner that is completely different and delicious, I highly recommend this one. My spaghetti squash has been staring me in the face from its resting spot on our breakfast table for some time, so I had to bite the bullet this weekend and decided on good old Spaghetti & Meatballs. I had a pound of bison in the fridge, so I decided to use that for the meatballs. Bison has more protein and less fat than beef or pork, which is great for the waistline, but not great for keeping meatballs together. Breadcrumbs usually act as a meatball adhesive, but I had seen Joy Bauer, of morning show fame, use pumpkin puree as an alternative adhesive in turkey meatballs, so I decided to try it- and I’m s glad I did!
Everyone knows that you have to brown meatballs before cooking them in your pasta sauce, so I decided that if the pumpkin meatball was going to leach out its yummy contents, then the sauce might as well be deliberately pumpkin/tomato. This may sound like an unusual combination, but Trader Joe’s actually makes a pumpkin/butternut squash/tomato sauce called Autumnal Harvest.
The result of mixing pumpkin and nutmeg with my traditional salty tomato sauce was incredible! It provides that salty/sweet umami flavor that I love. I buy pumpkin puree in bulk for all of its many purposes, since it has a high fiber content and delicious flavor, so it always excites me to find yet another use for it! We really loved this new sauce and definitely plan on making it again. You can eat it over Spaghetti Squash like we did, for a low carb option, or over regular pasta. If you do eat it over Spaghetti Squash, then I recommend a teaspoon of baking soda sprinkled on teach side of he squash to aid digestion! I really hope you try this recipe and enjoy something a little different and autumn flavored!
Spaghetti Squash & Bison Meatballs with Pumpkin-Tomato Sauce
1 Spaghetti Squash
2 tsp. baking soda
2 cups of pumpkin puree1 lb. of bison
1 lb. of tomatoes (roasted)
6 carrots (roasted)
1/2 cup of olive oil
6 cloves of garlic
2 tsp. Nutmeg
salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 400. Roast Tomatoes with garlic, and carrots, drizzle olive oil
- While Veggies roast, use your hands to mix 1/2 cup of pumpkin with 1 pound of Bison.
- Divide Bison into 4 equal parts and divide the 4 parts in half. This will give you 8 equal sized 1/8 lb meatballs. Roll them into balls between your palms.
- Heat a large skillet with olive oil on medium. When oil is hot, brown each side or your pumpkin meatball in the oil.
- After 30 minutes of roasting, puree your vegetables in a food processor. Add 1/2 cup of olive oil, basil, 1 1/2 cups of pumpkin puree, nutmeg, salt and pepper to the mixture process until smooth and incorporated.
- Add the sauce mixture to your meatballs and turn heat to simmer.
- While your sauce and meatballs simmer together on the stove, puncture your spaghetti squash with a fork.
- Microwave your spaghetti squash is a glass bowl of water for 5 minutes so that it is soft enough to cut in half.
- Remove Spaghetti squash from the microwave, take out all seeds with a spoon and and your baking soda.
- Place each half of your spaghetti squash BACK in the microwave to cook for 5 more minutes until the squash is easily removed in strings with a fork*
- Serve with 2 large meatballs and heaping sauce on a bed of spaghetti squash! Enjoy!
*This is the fastest and best way to cook spaghetti squash. Letting in linger in the oven does nothing for the flavor or quality!