Do you have any traditional foods that you look forward to? Does the thought of your Mom’s homemade pumpkin bread bring a smile to your face? Traditional foods are those that are passed down through families and generations. These recipes can create fond memories that we carry for our whole lives. I know that I look forward to latkes (potato pancakes) during the holiday season. Potato pancakes have their place in many cultures and family traditions, so these delicious pancakes appear all year round.  Who could pass these up?

Latkes are traditionally made from potatoes, but can be made with all sorts of mixtures. I’ve experimented with multiple combinations of shredded vegetables and landed on the spaghetti squash, potato and jalapeño combination. It highlights the winter squash, adds more beneficial nutrients and the jalapeno gives it a nice kick.  The chive Greek yogurt is served on the side. It provides some creaminess and helps to cool down the mouth if you find your jalapeños are hotter than anticipated! If you’re not big on spice but still want some heat, make sure to remove the seeds from the jalapeño before slicing and adding to the mixture.

If you haven’t had spaghetti squash, you’re in for a treat. After the squash is cooked, you’ll want to scrape the cooked flesh from the skin with a fork. The squash will naturally pull away from the skin in strands, appearing very much like spaghetti! It’s pretty cool! Many people use spaghetti squash as a base with a favorite sauce or even use it as a pasta replacement. This squash is a great addition to the traditional latke, adding more fiber and nutrients and a change in texture. It’s a wonderful seasonal take on these yummy pancakes.

I hope this easy twist on the traditional latke finds its way to your table and you enjoy the delicious taste of these spaghetti squash, potato and the jalapeno latkes! Don’t forget to add a dollop of chive Greek yogurt. Super yummy!

Enjoy!  Leah

Spaghetti Squash, Potato and Jalapeño Latkes
with Chive Greek Yogurt

Latkes are a traditional potato pancake typically made during the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah.  These delicious pancakes are fried in oil to represent the story of Hanukkah and topped with applesauce and sour cream. These days there are multiple takes on the traditional recipe, giving some variety to the latke. This spaghetti squash, potato and jalapeño latke recipe will give you some tradition with some flare. If your mouth catches on fire from the jalapeno, add a dollop of Greek yogurt and you’ll put the flames out 😊.  

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes

Author: Leah Golden, MS, RD

Recipe type: Dinner, Lunch, Appetizer  

Cuisine: Gluten-free, Holiday

Serves: 24 Latkes

Ingredients:

  • 3 Cups roasted spaghetti squash (~ 1 small squash) *
  • 3 Cups Yukon gold potatoes, shredded (~4 medium potatoes) **
  • ½ Cup yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 egg
  • ½ medium jalapeño, thinly sliced (remove seeds to reduce spice)
  • 2 Tbsp gluten-free all-purpose flour (you may replace with another flour of your choosing; like almond flour or all-purpose wheat flour)
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Coconut or canola oil for frying

Chive Greek Yogurt

  • 1 Cup Greek yogurt
  • 4 Tbsp chives, diced

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 200°F or warm setting on oven. Prepare cooking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. This will be used later to keep cooked latkes warm.
  2. Combine cooked spaghetti squash, potato shreds, onion, jalapeño, and egg in a medium bowl until all ingredients evenly distributed.
  3. Add flour and salt and mix ingredients.
  4. Heat a cast iron skillet (or another non-stick pan) on medium high. Once pan in heated, add canola or coconut oil, just enough to cover the bottom of the pan.
  5. Once heated, scoop about ¼ cup of mixture into pan. A 12” skillet should hold about 3-4 latkes.
  6. Fry latkes for 3-4 minutes on each side or until crispy. Once cooked on both sides, transfer to cookie sheet and put latkes in oven to keep warm until ready to eat.
  7. Continue cooking the latkes until the mixture is used up. Separate layers of latkes on cookie sheet with paper towels to help drain excess oil and keep them from sticking to each other. Keep cooked latkes in oven to stay warm.
  8. To make Greek yogurt topping, put yogurt in small bowl and add diced chives. Mix well.
  9. Serve latkes immediately with the chive Greek yogurt.

*You can cook spaghetti squash two ways.  First option– heat oven to 400°F, wash outside of squash, pierce holes in raw flesh, put on cookie sheet in middle of oven for 75-90 minutes or until fork can pierce through skin easily. Let cool slightly and cut squash lengthwise. Scoop out seeds and gunk. Squash is ready to use in the recipe. Second option– heat oven to 400°F, wash outside of squash, cut raw squash lengthwise, scoop out seeds and gunk. Fill baking pan with about ¼-1/2 inch of water and put squash halves facedown, with the skin side facing up. This will steam the squash well. Cook for about 60 minutes or until flesh is easily pulled from skin with fork. It’s ready to use in the recipe.

** You can grate potatoes easily in a food processor with a grater attachment. If you don’t have this option, you can use a hand grater as well. Be careful not to cut your fingers while preparing the potato shreds.