Spaghetti Squash N’ Greens Gratin

September 14, 2011 at 10:33 am 17 comments

I discovered spaghetti squash about 6 years ago when my mom served it as a bed for her delicious meaty pasta sauce – I love the slight sweetness it brings to a dish and the long spaghetti-like strands fascinate me. Since my initial encounter, I’ve made spaghetti squash numerous times, incorporating it in a veggie-packed lunch tossed with my arugula and spinach pesto, sauteed chicken and mushrooms or a hearty dinner with my turkey meatballs and spinach sauce and of course more parmesan cheese 🙂

For a sweeter dish, you can bake it with a little butter, honey and ground cinnamon, much like acorn or butternut squash for a delicious side or a light ending to a meal.

A couple weeks back, I was getting a little tired of my usual spaghetti squash recipes and needed to use up a gorgeous, fresh bunch of red chard in the fridge. After flipping through a few cookbooks for inspiration, I googled chard and spaghetti squash and ran across two recipes for a bubbly and cheesy gratin from Kevin at Closet Cooking and Kalyn’s Kitchen. That was all the convincing I needed…off the kitchen I went!

I made a few substitutions to lighten it up and add a little texture — Instead of sour cream, I subbed plain Greek yogurt for creaminess, decreased the parmesan slightly (feel free to add more if you’d like), added a a bit of cayenne and chopped mushrooms and topped it off with sliced almonds for crunch. I divided up the gratin into one 8×8 pan and the rest in two individual gratin dishes, it was delicious and I loved the leftovers! You can serve this vegetable-packed dish as a vegetarian main meal or as a side dish.

Chard and Spaghetti Squash Gratin (adapted from Closet Cooking who adapted from Kalyn’s Kitchen)


1 spaghetti squash, cut in half and seeds removed
1 bunch hearty greens (I used red chard but kale or collards work well too), de-stemmed and roughly
1 onion (I used a medium white), diced
2 – 3 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 egg, lightly beaten (or two egg whites)
3 green onions, chopped
5-7 mushrooms, chopped
1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt (sour cream could be used if preferred for a richer version)
3/4 cup cottage cheese (I used 1 %)
1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese, divided  (romano works too)
small pinch of cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste
2-3 Tbsp sliced almonds


1. Microwave squash in a shallow dish with about 1/2 inch of water, cover with plastic wrap, and cook on high for 11 minutes (quick method) OR roast spaghetti squash halves in a preheated 400F oven until tender, about 1 hour. If using microwave, preheat oven to 400F.
2. Using a large spoon, scoop the strands out of the squash halves.
3. While the squash is cooking, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
4. Add the onion and saute until tender, about 3-5 minutes.
5. Add the garlic and mushrooms, then saute until fragrant, about a minute.
6. Add the chard and saute until it has just wilted, (just a few minutes, it will cook more in the oven).
7. Mix the cooked squash, chard-onion mixture, green onions, egg, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, 1/2 cup parmesan, cayenne, salt and pepper in a large bowl and pour it into a lightly greased gratin or casserole dish or in smaller individual gratin dishes.
8. Sprinkle with remaining 2 Tbsp parmesan and sliced almonds.
9. Bake in a preheated 400F oven until it is bubbling on the sides and golden brown on top, about 30-40 minutes for larger baking dish, 28-30 minutes for smaller dishes. Serve warm and enjoy!

Entry filed under: Gluten Free, Lunch, Main Dish, Refined Sugar Free, Vegetarian. Tags: , , , , .

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17 Comments Add your own

  • 1. M.  |  September 14, 2011 at 12:50 pm

    this looks so delicious, can’t wait to try it! i loooveee spaghetti squash! your photos are great!!! thanks for the yumminess!

    • 2. naturalnoshing  |  September 14, 2011 at 2:24 pm

      Isn’t spaghetti squash SO delicious?!? Thanks for the kind words M!

  • 3. Jessy (squeezetheday)  |  September 14, 2011 at 1:34 pm

    Oh, this looks delicious! I tried spaghetti squash for the first time last week and we are growing some of our own, so I’m totally bookmarking this! 😉

    • 4. naturalnoshing  |  September 14, 2011 at 2:25 pm

      Oh how I wish I had a garden again, that’s the one thing I miss about our house. I am excited for your homemade squash – homegrown is the best!

      • 5. Jessy (squeezetheday)  |  September 15, 2011 at 1:08 am

        Definitely! We have so many bell peppers (my favourite vegetable!), zucchini (a close second), tomatoes, cucumbers etc. right now, I don’t know how I’ll go without homegrown stuff during winter. 😦

  • 6. Sonia The Healthy Foodie  |  September 14, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Wow, that looks good! Just my kind of dish too. How convenient that squash should be in season. I get the feeling that I too, will be off to the kitchen prepping that very same dish fairly soon.

    Your pics are brilliant, by the way. Make me want to dig right in. 🙂

    • 7. naturalnoshing  |  September 14, 2011 at 2:28 pm

      Thanks so much Sonia! Coming from you, that’s a huge compliment 🙂 your photos are always top-notch!
      It’s the cheese that makes it so pretty…bubbling and golden…I can’t ever go wrong with parmesan!

  • […] Autumn Vegetable Gratin Low carb & gluten free, this simple gratin uses spaghetti squash, collard (mustard or kale) greens and cottage cheese to create that rich, creamy casserole we know and love. […]

  • 9. My Fudo  |  September 17, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    I’m intrigued with this kind squash greens gratin. The looks of it make me wanna taste some of it.

  • 10. Foodista | Gluten Free Foodie Friday: 5 Must Try Recipes  |  September 20, 2011 at 6:09 am

    […] Autumn Vegetable Gratin Low carb & gluten free, this simple gratin uses spaghetti squash, collard (mustard or kale) greens and cottage cheese to create that rich, creamy casserole we know and love. […]

  • 11. Spaghetti Squash Gratin | The Healthy Foodie  |  October 12, 2011 at 6:01 pm

    […] when I saw Nora’s post a couple of weeks ago, featuring a superb Squash N’ Greens Gratin that called for spaghetti squash, I was immediately sold. I knew I had to give it a try. It looked […]

  • 12. Jessy (squeezetheday)  |  November 4, 2011 at 9:32 am

    I made this today. I left out mushrooms and green onions, as I didn’t have any. I think I used way too much kale (you didn’t specify how much we need), as it didn’t look at all like yours and it was very watery. My mother loved it anyway, though.

    • 13. naturalnoshing  |  November 7, 2011 at 3:46 pm

      I used a small bunch, whoops – I should have specified a little more! I wonder if your spaghetti squash was more watery than mine? I didn’t have that issue at all but Sonia did as well. I wonder if adding a tablespoon of so of brown rice flour, cornstarch or tapioca starch would help absorb some of the liquid? Or press the greens after cooking for excess moisture? I hope it was yummy nevertheless!

  • 14. nikolejackson  |  November 21, 2011 at 1:38 pm

    Just made this last week, and it was a big hit! So delicious!

    • 15. naturalnoshing  |  November 21, 2011 at 11:26 pm

      SO glad you enjoyed the gratin! 🙂 thanks for letting me know, that’s always is wonderful to hear!

  • 16. Sunshine=better motivation « The Fit Journey  |  February 9, 2012 at 7:27 am

    […]  Spaghetti Squash Gratin […]

  • […] and satisfying lunch.  Enjoy! Spaghetti Squash and Greens Gratin serves 4-6 adapted from Natural Noshing 1 spaghetti squash, cut in half lengthwise, seeds removed 1 bunch kale, de-stemmed and roughly […]


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