“Sketti,” the meal prepared by Alana “Honey Boo Boo Child” Thompson’s mother June, has been everywhere the past few weeks. Made by putting butter and ketchup (melted together in a microwave) on top of spaghetti, “sketti” is a media sensation. Much of the attention has centered on how outrageously unhealthy the meal is.
While I’m uncomfortable judging a mother on what she feeds her children (and I also think the majority of the reactions to the show Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and the Thompson family in general are incredibly classist), there’s really no away around the fact that carbs, butter and ketchup isn’t the best nutritional choice for anyone.
So I whipped up my own healthy and gluten-free version of sketti. Basically, it’s just a simple tomato sauce paired with spaghetti. While it’s not quite as fast as Mama June’s version, this sketti is still uncomplicated and quick, not to mention fairly cheap (Bonus: this recipe can be made from ingredients you probably have sitting in your pantry right now.) Canned tomatoes and garlic are both inexpensive, although gluten-free pasta is a bit pricier than the regular kind.
Obviously this version is a bit better for your body, because it’s minus all the yucky processed ingredients and fat found in the buttery-ketchupy version. This sketti is easily customizable so you can make it even healthier and even tastier: use fresh tomatoes, throw in some beans, or add lean meat or other veggies to the sauce (onions, spinach, peppers would all be great).
I used my favorite brand of gluten-free pasta, which is Ancient Harvest’s Quinoa Spaghetti. I prefer it because it’s not as gummy as rice spaghetti can be, and I liked the added nutritional benefit of quinoa.
Healthy, Gluten-Free “Sketti”
total time: 15 minutes
total hands-on time: 10-12 minutes
What you’ll need:
1 package gluten-free spaghetti
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
2 tbsps olive oil
1-3 cloves garlic (or 1-3 tsps; more if you like things garlicky)
other Italian seasonings if you’ve got them (basil, red pepper flakes, oregano)
What you’ll do:
1. Prepare a large pot full of salted water and bring it to a boil. Cook your pasta.
2. While the pasta is cooking, combine garlic and oil in a frying pan or small saucepan.
3. Saute garlic for about a minute, then add entire can of diced tomatoes.
4. Using the back of a wooden spoon, crush the diced tomatoes so they release more liquid.
5. Add salt, pepper, and other seasonings of your choice (I added dried basil and red pepper flakes). Simmer on medium-high until the pasta is finished cooking, 7-10 minutes.
6. Set aside 1/4 cup of pasta water.
7. Add sauce to pasta. If the sauce seems too thick, add a bit of the pasta water. Garnish with cheese if you have it.
And that’s it! Sketti with a healthy spin.