These Pumpkin Chicken Meatballs are a fun topping to a garlicky, buttery base of spaghetti squash. Though this dish takes awhile to prepare, it’s totally worth it!
I don’t know about you, but I’m on a quest to eat as much pumpkin in the next three months as possible. It’s my goal to make/blog about at least one pumpkin dish per week! We’ll see how I do. 🙂 So first…I have a confession to make. I made this dish last year. In fact, it was one of the first new recipes I made in our new Nashville kitchen after we moved here last year. And it just didn’t make it on the blog. Oooops! Moving to a new state and starting a new job kinda takes a lot of time. 🙂 But despite the length of time between eating this dish and sharing it here, I think it’s utterly fabulous! Most people think of pumpkin as a sweet ingredient [helllooo pumpkin pie, cookies, bread, muffins, yada yada yada] but I love it when used at dinnertime. Though pumpkin by itself is actually a little bland, it can add some color, moisture, and substance to sauces, meatballs, or soups when used in a savory sense. This was my first time using pumpkin in meatballs and I must say I’m super impressed! These meatballs were sooo flavorful and indulgent… if meatballs can be indulgent, haha.
And don’t forget about the spaghetti squash! It’s garlicky and buttery and just plain perfect. It was Ben’s first taste of spaghetti squash and he loved it… especially because of the bacon. Everything’s better with bacon, right? Even pumpkin! With this dish you’ll certainly have one of the more unique ways to enjoy pumpkin. And it’s awesome! Hope you enjoyyy!
Pumpkin Chicken Meatballs with Spaghetti Squash
from We are not Martha
- 1 spaghetti squash
- 1 pound ground chicken [ground turkey would also work too]
- 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 tablespoons Star Fine Foods Butter Olive Oil – or regular butter or olive oil
- 3 large cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried sage
- 4 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Carefully poke holes all over the spaghetti squash with a sharp knife. Place in a baking dish and bake for 80 minutes, rotating halfway through.
While spaghetti squash is cooking, prepare meatballs. In a large bowl, mix together ground chicken, pumpkin, ginger, thyme, panko, parmesan, and egg. Scoop mixture into golfball-sized balls and place in a baking dish that has been greased with cooking spray. Bake for about 25-30 minutes or until cooked through and crisp on the outside. [Hint: put the meatballs in the oven after the squash has cooked for about 65 or 70 minutes–that’ll be good timing so everything is finished about the same time.]
After 80 minutes, remove squash from oven and let cool.
When cool enough to touch, carefully cut in half. Scoop seeds out, then use a fork to remove the “spaghetti” and set aside.
In a large skillet set over medium heat, add olive oil and cook garlic for one minute. Add squash, sage, and crumbled bacon, then cook for about 3 minutes until tender.
Serve meatballs over spaghetti squash with parmesan on top.