This may be one of my favorite posts just because it's all about cheese!! Yes, I admit cheese is one of my favorite foods. Cheese, in moderation, makes a great high protein snack and can add a ton of flavor and creaminess to dishes. Cheddar cheese is one of my top favorite cheeses, because a little goes a long way with flavor and the sharper the better! Also, did you know cheddar cheese is naturally lactose free? So those of you with lactose intolerance can indulge as well!
I was lucky enough to receive free samples from Cabot Farm to do some recipe testing. I love that Cabot is a local sustainable family-farmer owned cooperative with more than 1200 farms throughout New England and New York.
Cabot is challenging us to come up with a healthier appetizer or snack using Cabot Cheddar cheese. The Super Bowl (Go Patriots!!) and my love for mac and cheese were the inspiration for my healthier Spaghetti Squash Cheddar Bites. I wanted a healthy finger food that would please just about anyone. These cheddar bites definitely are a crowd pleaser. Using spaghetti squash instead of macaroni helps cut down on the carbohydrates and calories and the sharp cheddar brings in a ton of flavor and protein. Cooking them in a muffin tin also helps with portion control. Each bite is only 75 calories!
Makes: 12; Servings: 6
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- salt/pepper to taste
- 6 ounces Cabot Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded
- 1/4 cup onion, diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 egg, slightly beaten
- olive oil spray
- 1/4 whole wheat bread crumbs
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
1. Preheat oveen to 425 degrees. Cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and remove seeds. Place on baking sheet cut side up. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook for 35-40 minutes or until tender.
2. While spaghetti squash is baking. In a medium saute pan on medium heat add 1 tablespoon olive oil and saute onions for 3 minutes or until translucent. Add garlic and cook for another 30 seconds or until frangrent. Set aside.
3. In a small bowl mix together Dijon mustard and egg.
4. Once spaghetti squash is cooked remove from oven and turn oven heat down to 375 degrees. Let squash cool for 10 minutes then shred with a fork, then add shredded squash to colander to drain any water then pat dry with paper towel. (This is key to prevent the squash from being to soggy!)
5. In a large bowl mix together squash, with egg mixture, then add in onions and cheese and mix to combine.
6. Spray muffin tin with olive oil spray. Add equal amounts of squash mixture to each muffin tin. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and paprika.
7. Bake mixture for 20 minutes. Then place muffin tin on top rack and broil for 2-3 minutes.
Nutrition (per 2 bites): 154 Calories, 12 g carbohydrate, 9 g protein, 10g fat
Disclosure: I received free samples of Cabot Cheese mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe challenge sponsored by Cabot Creamery and am eligible to win prizes. I was not additionally compensated for my time.
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