This Spaghetti Squash with Vodka Sauce Casserole is the heartiest low carb comfort food. This creamy baked casserole is loaded with spicy Italian sausage and mushrooms, giving it tons of flavor. The “vodka sauce” is made with greek yogurt. Finished with a nice layer of mozzarella and fresh basil, this is my version of healthy.
If you love healthy pasta recipes, try my Basil Pasta.
For a more traditional Italian recipe, check out my Chicken Penne Alla Vodka.
- Low carb & keto casserole
- Creamy “vodka sauce” with no vodka
- Tons of mozzarella & parmesan
- Lots of veggies
- Hearty mushrooms and Italian sausage
- A hint of red pepper for some spice
- Uses a jar of store bought sauce
- Great for meal prep or leftovers
- Spaghetti Squash: I highly recommend weighing the raw squash at the store or at home so that you have the correct amount. Spaghetti squashes vary in size.
- Onion: Swap for sweet or white onion.
- Red Chili: Omit if you do not want any spice.
- Tomato Sauce: Use an already seasoned jar of tomato sauce that has spices and olive oil already cooked into it. I prefer an herb flavored one. Avoid plain cans of tomato sauce. Greek Yogurt: I like to use 2%. You can use whatever fat content you prefer.
Complete list of ingredients and amounts is located on the recipe card below.
before you start . . .
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Slice the spaghetti squash in half. Using a sharp knife, slice each end off of the squash. Then, slice the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out any seeds. Cutting through these can be a little tricky.
Step 1: On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, brush all sides of the spaghetti squash with oil. Place each half squash cut side down.
Step 2: Bake for 40-60 minutes, or until fork tender. While the squash bakes, in a large pot over medium high heat, cook the sausage and mushrooms. Let most of the water evaporate from the mushrooms.
TIP - Don’t over bake the squash. A fork should be able to pierce through it, but it should not be completely falling apart or too mushy.
Step 3: Add the onions, garlic, and spices. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until the onion softens.
Step 4: Add the sauce and simmer on medium low heat, stirring frequently until the squash is done. The sauce should thicken up a bit.
TIP - The sausage fat should begin to render and produce enough oil to coat the pan. If the pan seems dry (or if you used turkey sausage), you can add olive oil.
TIP - You want the sauce to thicken more than usual to account for any excess water in the squash.
Step 5: Once the squash is done, let it cool until you can handle it. Use a fork to scrape the middle of the squash so that the “spaghetti” forms.
Step 6: Fold the squash, yogurt, and parmesan cheese into the meat sauce.
TIP - You can scrape the squash all the way down to the skin.
Step 7: Lightly grease a 9 x 13 baking dish. Pour the squash mixture into the dish. Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese on top.
Step 8: Bake for 15 minutes, or until the edges are bubbling and the cheese is completely melted. Let stand for 5-10 minutes before serving.
Expert Tips & Recipe Notes
- Use good quality Italian pork sausage. Good quality sausage is made with lots of herbs and spices which will contribute a lot to the flavor of this dish. Pork sausage has more fat than other varieties, which also adds flavor and heartiness to the casserole.
- Use a vegetable chopper. I like to cut the veggies finely for this recipe. The smallest blade on this chopper works great! It is a huge time saver if you cut a lot in the kitchen.
- Cook off as much water as possible. The mushrooms and onions sweat (or release water) when they are cooked. You want to cook off all of this excess water because the spaghetti squash has a high water content as well.
- Simmer the sauce. Get to work on the sauce as soon as the squash goes in the oven so there is plenty of time for it to simmer and thicken. This is when all of the flavors develop and meld together.
- Watch the sauce. You want to keep an eye on the sauce and be sure to stir it so that it does not burn or stick to the bottom.
- Garnish with basil. For even more flavor and some freshness, finish the casserole with lots of fresh basil.
- Let the casserole stand. I like to let the casserole sit for 5-10 minutes when it comes out of the oven so it firms up a bit.
I like to serve it with some greens, like this Kale Salad or Greek Salad.
Yes, this casserole reheats great in the microwave leftover. This is one reason I prefer to use squash instead of pasta. I do not love the texture of reheated pasta but the squash holds up great.
Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Reheat individual portions in the microwave.
Yes! If it is a very small amount (2 Tablespoons or less), just omit it. If not, just swap it for chicken broth.
Spicy Italian sausage is my favorite protein to add to any pasta dish with vodka sauce.
The honest answer is no, but it still tastes really good. Unfortunately, if you are craving pasta, the best way to satisfy that craving is just to eat some pasta. It works well in place of pasta because of its neutral taste. It also fluffs up and looks like spaghetti.
No spaghetti squash is low carb, making it great for keto or low carb diets.
Spaghetti Squash with Vodka Sauce Casserole
- 1 large yellow spaghetti squash, about 4 pounds whole, halved & seeds removed
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound ground spicy Italian sausage
- 1 8 ounce container white mushrooms, finely diced
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 5 cloves garlic, minced*
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 5 cracks black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon red chili flakes*
- ¼ teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 25 ounce jar tomato basil pasta sauce*
- ½ cup plain greek yogurt*
- 1 ounce (⅓ cup) parmesan reggiano, grated
- 6 ounces (1 ½ cups) mozzarella cheese, shredded
- fresh basil for garnishing
- Review all recipe notes and instructions before beginning.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, brush all sides of the spaghetti squash with oil. Place each half squash cut side down.
- Bake for 40-60 minutes, or until fork tender. While the squash bakes, in a large pot over medium high heat, cook the sausage and mushrooms. Let most of the water evaporate from the mushrooms.
- Add the onions, garlic, and spices. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until the onion softens.
- Add the sauce and simmer on medium low heat, stirring frequently until the squash is done. The sauce should thicken up a bit.
- Once the squash is done, let it cool until you can handle it. Use a fork to scrape the middle of the squash so that the “spaghetti” forms.
- Fold the squash, yogurt, and parmesan cheese into the meat sauce.
- Lightly grease a 9 x 13 baking dish. Pour the squash mixture into the dish. Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese on top.
- Bake for 15 minutes, or until the edges are bubbling and the cheese is completely melted. Let stand for 5-10 minutes before serving.
The recipe is called vodka sauce and I don't see any Vodka in the recipe? I've had pasta alla Vodka before and it has a lighter color red sauce. I'm not sure what is what? I think they have Vodka Sauce in a jar. Is that the sauce you would use for this?
It is my take on a "vodka sauce". It uses Greek yogurt instead of vodka and cream to achieve a creamy tangy sauce.