A classic comfort food gets a fun seasonal twist. Eggplant parmesan spaghetti boats make for a hearty, cheesy, delicious dinner.
I’m totally an Italian girl at heart when it comes to food. My dying meal involves red sauce and pasta (and a
glass bottle of Montepulciano). ‘Nough said.
Giving up meat and poultry at a young age, I had to find a meat-like substitute that I could slather tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese on. Enter, the eggplant. Eggplant parmesan is by far one of my favorite comfort food meals. But when you add pasta on the side, it ends up becoming a pretty heavy meal – one that I never can finish.
So, in an effort to lighten up the carbo load, I decided that spaghetti squash (in season this time of year) would be a delicious, lighter substitute for regular ol’ spaghetti. I love spaghetti squash. Mainly because shredding the squash into strands with a fork is quite possibly one of my favorite culinary pastimes. It’s fun. Trust me.
This meal is pretty straight forward. You roast the squash. Bread some eggplant. And layer your squash boats. Voila.
And the outcome is delightful. Saucy, cheesy, breaded eggplant with lighter, better-for-you “spaghetti” (squash). Not only is spaghetti squash lower in calories and carbs than pasta, it also packs in heart-healthy and immune-boosting nutrients like potassium, folic acid, vitamin A, and beta-carotene.
- 2 spaghetti squash, cut in half lengthwise and seeds removed
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 medium eggplant, cut in 1-inch slices
- 2 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup flour
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 1 1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
- 4 cups roasted garlic tomato sauce
- 3 cups mozzarella
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and line baking sheets with parchment paper. Brush cut sides of squash with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Place squash (cut side down) onto baking sheet and bake for 40-50 minutes, or until tender. Remove from oven and let cool. Using a fork, scrape squash into strands.
- Coat eggplant with salt in a colander and let sit for 30 minutes. Remove eggplant and squeeze out any excess liquid using a towel.
- Place flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs into three separate bowls. One eggplant slice at a time, dip into the flour, the egg batter, and the breadcrumbs, in that order. Place coated slices onto new parchment-lined baking sheets.
- Lower oven temperature to 375 degrees and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and cut eggplant slices into chunks.
- To assemble the squash boats, remove some of the squash strands from each boat and set aside in a bowl. Spread a layer of tomato sauce over squash and top with eggplant pieces. Layer the removed squash strands on top of the eggplant and cover with another layer of sauce. Add a second layer of eggplant pieces and top with tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese.
- Bake assembled squash boats in the oven for 20-25 minutes.
I love how hearty and satisfying this meal is too! Perfect for winter time hibernation mode ;). Not that I’m hibernating or anything…
Tell me, have you ever tried spaghetti squash? What’s your favorite way to eat it? Check out my other favorite spaghetti squash boat below: