I first got the idea for this casserole from a Hungry Girl recipe. It seemed pretty easy and very healthy. It used roasted spaghetti squash as the “pasta” for the dish, and I loved the idea of a Mexican casserole full of veggies. I added some black beans because I love them and they are a good source of protein and fiber.
To make this yumminess happen, first you roast the squash, then cook your ground turkey and vegetables, mix it all together with some cheese and other good stuff, and finally bake it. You can prepare it ahead of time and bake it when you are ready to eat it or you can bake it and freeze a portion if you like. It makes quite a lot, so if you aren’t feeding a crowd, you could share it or have leftovers. We opted for leftovers – to me that’s one of the benefits of a big dish – and it was great the second, third, and fourth times around as well! It’s outstanding as-is or with a little guacamole or sour cream on top. It’s so tasty and full of bold flavors, and it’s a complete meal! We all loved it!
Mexican Veggie Impasta Bake
- 1 spaghetti squash
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 package lean ground turkey (about 20 oz.)
- Taco seasoning mix (I used homemade, but store bought is fine)
- 1 cup frozen sweet corn kernels
- 1 15 oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 cups shredded Mexican-blend cheese
- 1 1/2 cups of chunky salsa
- 2/3 cup fat-free sour cream
- Salt and pepper
- 1 Tablespoon of fresh chopped cilantro or green onions (optional)
- Sour cream for serving (optional)
- Guacamole for serving (optional)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Cut the squash in half lengthwise, then scoop out and discard seeds. Drizzle with about a half of a tablespoon of olive oil per half, season with salt and pepper. Place cut side up on a baking sheet. Roast for 45 minutes to an hour, turning the halves over halfway through roasting. When it is done, it will give when you squeeze the sides with tongs. Set aside to cool. Lower the oven to 350.
Meanwhile, heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the turkey and cook for 3-4 minutes. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook for another 3-4 minutes until the veggies are slightly softened and the turkey is cooked through. Sprinkle the turkey and veggies with 4 teaspoons of taco seasoning and mix well. Transfer to an extra-large bowl.
Spray a 9″ x 13″ baking pan with nonstick spray (I used my Misto with olive oil).
Use a fork to scrape out cooled squash strands. Place in a strainer to drain excess moisture. Blot dry, if needed. Transfer to the bowl with the turkey and vegetables and sprinkle with 1 Tablespoon of taco seasoning. Add the corn, black beans, 1 cup of cheese, and thoroughly stir.
In a medium bowl, combine salsa, sour cream, and 2 teaspoons of taco seasoning. Mix well. Add to the turkey and veggie mixture and thoroughly stir.
Transfer mixture to baking pan and smooth out the top. Sprinkle with remaining 1 cup cheese.
Bake until hot and bubbly, about 30 minutes. For extra pizzaz, sprinkle with fresh chopped cilantro or green onions and serve with sour cream or guacamole.