Spaghetti Squash with Meat Sauce

A really nice alternative to pasta is using spaghetti squash with your favorite red sauce and some high-quality grass-fed meat (if you are a meat eater like me.) I can easily find the spaghetti squash at Whole Foods and Giant Eagle on a regular basis.

1. Poke holes in the squash and cook it on a plate in the microwave for 5-7 minutes. It should be soft enough to cut in half easily. Or bake it in the oven for 30-40 minutes at 350 degrees.

2. Cut the squash in half (length-wise) and remove the seeds. Use a fork to scrape out the wonderful squash strands and store it in a bowl.

3. Brown your grass-fed ground beef -- add a little chopped onion and fresh basil if you'd like.

4. Make a homemade red sauce or use a high quality jarred, red sauce like this one. Ingredients: imported Italian tomatoes, imported olive oil, fresh onions, salt, fresh garlic, fresh basil, black pepper and oregano. I am a realist; I know we don't all have time to make sauce from scratch, so having a high-quality jarred sauce is important. This sauce is expensive, but it is delicious and I love that there is no sugar or artificial ingredients. I found it at Whole Foods.

5. Fill your plate with squash, load up with meat and slather on the red sauce. Add a sprinkling of fresh grated parmesan, if you enjoy and can tolerate dairy products, and let the feasting begin!

Leftover squash? Add garlic, butter, salt and pepper and use it as a nice side to meat or fish or load it up with other veggies and/or meat and season to taste.