Nourishing Spaghetti Squash Soup

spaghetti squash soup

Spaghetti Squash Soup

Spaghetti squash soup… who would have thought this would play such a major role in my healing journey?

Okay, so it wasn’t so much the spaghetti squash as it was the bone broth from a health standpoint.  A bone broth recipe for leaky gut is sooo much better when you combine it with Italian food – amirite?!

Italian food + bone broth = 2 of my favorite things (especially in January!).  But together?  Who would have thought?

Spaghetti squash soup ingredients

spaghetti squash

Spaghetti squash health benefits

I typically use spaghetti squash as a lower glycemic, potassium-rich alternative to pasta in this soup.   It goes a long way! 

          • Half a cup of this stuff adds in an extra serving of veggies, and we can all use more of those… right?
          • Spaghetti squash is also incredibly easy to digest!

Tomatoes 

The tomato ingredients are what put a nice Italian spin on this soup!  They also give us an added boost of potassium in addition to the squash.  (If you’ve got kidney issues, this soup is probably not the best fit for you because of the high potassium content.)

Broth 

Bone broth is near and dear to my heart, in that it has played a major role in my digestive & autoimmune healing journey (and continues to!).  

  • Bone broth is now readily available in lots of supermarkets, or you can make your own.
  • Swap bone broth for chicken stock or veggie broth if it’s not for you!
  • Quality matters, so make sure you are using a broth that you enjoy. 😉

Bone broth nutrition

Like collagen peptides, bone broth is rich in certain amino acids (building blocks of protein) such as glutamine, proline and cysteine.  These amino acids make ideal fuel for our enterocytes (cells that make up our digestive tract), allowing our gut to re-build and regenerate healthier and stronger.

The gut and immunity

70% of our immune system lives in our digestive tract, so you do the math: healthy digestion is FUNDAMENTAL to a healthy, balanced immune system!

On a really positive note, it only takes about 48 hours on average for the human digestive system to regenerate completely new cells.  This makes bone broth a great catalyst for many (but not all) people when it comes to healing and sealing a damaged gut lining…

But that doesn’t mean you need to use bone broth in this soup recipe!

Bone broth is not for everyone

Disclaimer: I’m not saying that if we drink bone broth then all of our gut issues will disappear.  (Wouldn’t that be nice?!) Everyone is unique.  One size does not fit all.

  • For example, people with extreme/severe digestive issues (i.e. severe Crohn’s, colitis, etc.) would actually do more harm than good if they were to start drinking bone broth. 

In addition to bone broth, there’s one last (optional) ingredient I wanted to touch on… meat!

(To eat or not to eat meat? It’s up to you!)

Ground meat

When I had iron deficiency anemia, I used to incorporate lots of (ethically sourced, sustainably farmed) ground beef into this recipe (see below for option).  It’s a great way to get lots of heme iron and it also made me feel like I was eating spaghetti and meatballs (#nostalgia).

But after years of eating meat, my diet has now become mostly plant-based. We go through different metabolic states all the time, and I do my best to honor what my body tells me!

I know that many people don’t thrive on animal foods and do better with a more plant-based lifestyle.  That’s totally fine!

Bottom line:  If you decide to go with the meat, my recommendation for meat of all kinds is to make sure it’s ethically sourced and sustainably farmed.  (Spring 2020 update:  this is something we go into great detail talking about in my Kitchen Alchemy course!)

spaghetti squash soup

Spaghetti Squash Soup

Jenna Volpe
This easy, nourishing, comforting, low-glycemic, spaghetti squash soup recipe is combined with a tasty tomato sauce and gut-healing broth. Why not get the best of both worlds as a healthy foodie?!
Prep Time 1 hr
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 1 hr 40 mins
Servings 6 people

Equipment

  • Oven for cooking squash
  • Utensils for measuring
  • Pairing knife for chopping veggies
  • Large stove pot and ladle

Ingredients
  

  • 6 cups broth of choice I use bone broth!
  • 32 oz. tomato sauce I love Rao's!
  • 1 small or 1/2 large spaghetti squash
  • 2 small or 1 large onion diced)
  • 1 container mushrooms (sliced)
  • 2 tbsp fat of choice (extra-virgin olive oil, ghee or butter)
  • 1 lb. ground meat of choice (optional)
  • sliced peppers, broccoli, zucchini (optional)

Instructions
 

The spaghetti squash

  • Cook spaghetti squash in advance: Poke a few holes in the top, and place squash in the oven at 400 degrees F for ~50 minutes.
  • Let the squash cool before de-seeding it: Remove from oven, cut down the middle, remove seeds, and scrape out the “spaghetti”.
  • Reserve the spaghetti for the soup recipe (see below!).

The soup

  • In a large stockpot, sauté ground beef (optional) over medium heat.
  • Add onion(s) and saute in the beef or in fat/oil over low-medium heat until translucent.
  • Add all other veggies except the squash, and continue to saute over low-medium heat. (Make sure to add mushrooms last, since they cook in the shortest amount of time.)
  • Continue to cook veggies until fork-tender.
  • Add spaghetti squash all remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.
  • Cover, reduce to a simmer and let everything continue to simmer for 10-15 minutes.
  • Enjoy right away, or let it cool and store in sealed container to refrigerate for later use!

Notes

Soup lasts 5 to 7 days in the fridge (if properly sealed and stored), or in the freezer for about 3 months.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Enjoy and stay warm!!!

<3 Jenna

References:

1. “The Health Benefits of Chicken Soup.” Health Navigator New Zealand. Health Navigator Charitable Trust, n.d. Web. 29 Nov. 2014.

2. Barrett, B. “Viral upper respiratory infection”. Textbook of Family Medicine. 8th ed. Philadelphia: Saunders Elsevier, 2011. Chapter 16. Print.

3. “Benefits of Bone Broth.” Doctor Auer RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2014.

4. Daniel, Kaayla T., Ph.D, C.C.N. “Taking Stock: Soup for Healing Body, Mind, Mood, and Soul.” Psychology Today. N.p., 20 Feb. 2012. Web. 29 Nov. 2014.

5. Fallon Morrell, Sally. “Broth Is Beautiful.” The Weston A. Price Foundation for Wise Traditions in Food, Farming, and the Healing Arts. N.p., 1 Jan. 2000. Web. 29 Nov. 2014.

6. “Nutrition Consultations: Integrative Medicine & Digestive Center.” John Hopkins Medicine. The Johns Hopkins University, The Johns Hopkins Hospital, and Johns Hopkins Health System, n.d. Web. 29 Nov. 2014.

7. Boyd, Tim. “Soup-stenance.” The Weston A. Price Foundation for Wise Traditions in Food, Farming, and the Healing Arts. N.p., 27 Mar. 2012. Web. 29 Nov. 2014.

8. “Gelatin Treats Ulcers.” Medical News Today. MediLexicon International, 22 Aug. 2006. Web. 29 Nov. 2014.

9. Wald, A., and S. A. Adibi. “Stimulation of Gastric Acid Secreted by Glycine and Related Oligopeptides in Humans.” American Journal of Physiology. 242.2 (1982): G85-8. PubMed. Web. 29 Nov. 2014.

10. Li, J., B. Langkamp-Henken, K. Suzuki, and L. Stahlgren. “Glutamine Prevents Parenteral Nutrition-induced Increases in Intestinal Permeability.” Journal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition 18.4 (1994): 303-07. Pub Med. Web. 29 Nov. 2014.

11. Lenard, Lane, Ph.D. “The Myth of Acid Indigestion.” Why Stomach Acid Is Good for You: Natural Relief from Heartburn, Indigestion, Reflux & GERD. By Jonathan Wright, M.D. Vol. 8. Lanham: M. Evans, 2001. 18-37. Print.

12. Grosvenor, Mary B., M.S., R.D. Nutrition: Science and Applications. By Lori A. Smolin, Ph.D. 1st ed. Hoboken: Courier/Kendalville, 2007. 97+. Print.

13. Miller, A. L. “Herapeutic Considerations of L-glutamine: A Review of the Literature.” Alternative Medicine Review 4.4 (1999): 239-48. Europe PubMed Central. Web. 29 Nov. 2014.

 

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