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Skinny Turkey Bolognese Served Over Nutritious Spaghetti Squash

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spaghetti-squash-with-meat-sauce

Everybody needs a good recipe for Bolognese sauce and this one is amazingly rich and filling!  My recipe is skinnier and healthier than most due to using ground turkey and draining the fat, adding a medley of pureed vegetables and pureed cottage cheese.  Nobody will ever guess there’s cottage cheese in the sauce!  It makes this sauce very rich tasting and velvety. I’m serving it over spaghetti squash, a terrific substitute for pasta! Each serving, 194 calories, 4 grams of fat and 5 Weight Watchers SmartPoints. This recipe is a real keeper!

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour


Ingredients

1 pound ground turkey

1 cup onions, chopped

½ cup carrots, chopped

½ cup celery, chopped

1 tablespoon garlic, minced

1½ cups reduced-fat cottage cheese

¼ cup tomato paste

1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes, in juice

1 cup red wine, see shopping tip

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 teaspoons Italian seasonings

½ teaspoons salt

⅛ teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 large spaghetti squash, you’ll need 8 cups cooked

Parmesan cheese, for topping, if desired


Instructions

1. In a large nonstick pan, brown turkey. Break into smaller chunks while cooking. Once browned, remove from heat and pour into a colander to drain the fat. This step will cut the fat from the turkey way down. Add back to pan.

2. Using a mini chop, food processor or blender, add onions, carrots, celery and garlic. Process until pureed. (see shopping tip)

3. Add veggies to browned and drained turkey. Cook on medium heat for 2 minutes.  Stir often.

4. Add cottage cheese to a mini chop, food processor or blender and puree. Mix into turkey and vegetables and cook for 1 minute.

5. Stir in tomato paste and cook for 1 more minute.  Add tomatoes, wine, vinegar, Italian seasonings, salt, red pepper flakes and mix well. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium low and cook for 40 minutes.  Stir frequently.

6. To cook spaghetti squash: Pierce squash in several places with a fork. Place in microwave and cook for about 10 to 12 minutes, until soft.  Let stand for about 5 minutes to finish steaming. Cut in half and using a fork, scoop out seeds and strands.

7. Serve sauce over 1 cup spaghetti squash.  Sprinkle with a little Parmesan cheese, if desired.

8. This sauce freezes great.

Serves 8 (about 1 cup sauce and 1 cup spaghetti squash)

Food Facts

Bolognese sauce is a thick full-bodied meat sauce and a staple of Northern Italy’s Bologna region.

Spaghetti squash is a creamy yellow, watermelon shaped, winter squash.  It’s so named because of it’s flesh, which when cooked, separates into yellow-gold, spaghetti-like strands. Available year round with a peak season from early fall through winter.


Shopping Tips

Use any reasonably priced red wine. I used Trader Joe’s Cabernet. It’s also know as the 2 buck chuck! It’s a wonderful wine for cooking.


Serving Tips

I love this sauce served over spaghetti squash. The squash has a subtle, sweet flavor and is so nutritious. My husband likes this sauce over ½ spaghetti squash and ½ whole wheat spaghetti! Or, if you prefer, served it over whole wheat or whole grain spaghetti. You can even top a baked potato with it


Skinny Facts for just the sauce
:
Weight Watchers SmartPoints 4
Weight Watchers POINTS PLUS 3
Weight Watchers (old points) 3
Skinny Facts: for 1 serving (about 1 cup sauce)
152 calories, 3g fat, 19g protein, 7g carbs, 1g fiber, 360mg sodium, 2g sugar

 

Weight Watchers SmartPoints 5 (includes 1 cup spaghetti squash)
Weight Watchers POINTS PLUS
4
(includes 1 cup spaghetti squash)
Weight Watchers
(old points) 4
(includes 1 cup spaghetti squash)

SKINNY FACTS: for 1 serving (~1 cup sauce & 1 cup squash)
194 calories, 4 fat, 1g sat. fat, 24mg chol, 20g protein, 17g carbs, 3g fiber, 388mg sodium, 5g sugar
FAT FACTS: for 1 serving of Olive Garden’s spaghetti with meat sauce
710 calories, 22g fat, 36g protein, 94g carbs, 9g fiber, 1340mg sodium