The Cheesecake Factory has a dish called Louisiana Chicken Pasta on their menu... one of my all-time favorite meals! I could eat the entire dish when I was little... and if you have been to the Cheesecake Factory, you know how big their portions are. Unfortunately, my gut cannot handle the drool-worthy sauce in that meal anymore. So naturally, I had to try to recreate something similar. Cajun Spaghetti Squash Casserole is nutrient-dense and SO delicious.
Cajun Spaghetti Squash Casserole has some heat, but the red peppers compliment that spice with their sweetness. It is a veggie-packed dish, but the spicy sausage makes it feel like a hearty pasta dish. It is a complete meal- fats, protein, and veggies all in one casserole... what more do you need?
Of course, nothing will be exactly like Louisiana Chicken Pasta, but my body is so much happier when eating this alternative. It is spicy, creamy, and dairy-free! You can serve it over spaghetti squash like the recipe calls for, or if you are not on a Whole30, you can use any pasta or veggie noodle you like! I personally love this with Jovial pasta, which is all gluten-free, during my food freedom.
In this recipe, I cook the spaghetti squash in my Instant Pot, which is my favorite way to cook it! However, if you don't have an Instant Pot, you can always use the microwave or bake it in the oven. Another ingredient that you may not be familiar with is JOI- which is a plant (nut) base alternative that I love. You can make nut milk out of it, but I love making sauces out of it, too! You can order it from their website and use the code ALTITUDE for 10% off your order. However, if you are making this last minute and don't have time to order it, you can always substitute 1 cup of cashews.
Tips for Cajun Spaghetti Squash Casserole:
- This is a great dinner but also makes delicious leftovers for lunch.
- Sub cashews for JOI if you don't have time to order it- but don't forget to order it for later!
- If you have kids, you can use regular sausage instead of spicy sausage.
- Don't forget to broil the casserole at the end if you like the top nice a crispy like me.
Cajun Spaghetti Squash Casserole
- 1 lbs spicy sausage
- spaghetti squash
- 1 red pepper- diced
- ½ white onion- diced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon JOI cashew base
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon garlic
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon cayenne
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Score your spaghetti squash with a knife and place it into your Instant Pot. Add 1 cup of water. Pressure cook on high for 13-15 minutes depending on the size of your squash. If your squash is too large for your Instant Pot, you can cut it in half along the equator and put it in your Instant Pot with 1 cup of water, and cook for the same amount of time.
- While your squash is cooking, brown your spicy sausage in a pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Once it is browned, add your red onion and white onion to the same pan and saute for 5 minutes.
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. At this point, your spaghetti squash should also be finished. Manually release the pressure and be very careful getting the squash out-it will be HOT. I let it cool for a few minutes before cutting it in half. Once I can, I cut it in half (I like to do it on the equator) then remove the seeds with a spoon. Next, use a fork to scrape out the meat of the squash and place it in a mixing bowl.
- Next is to add all of the sauce ingredients to a blender and mix it until it is creamy.
- Combine the sauce, meat, and veggies into the bowl with the spaghetti squash. Mix until everything is coated then move the ingredients to a casserole dish. Cook in the oven for 20 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
- If you like the top a little bit crispy, like me, broil the casserole for 2-3 minutes. Serve and enjoy!