If you haven’t cooked with spaghetti squash before, you need to. Like right now.
Pasta is a rare treat around our house, but with spaghetti squash you can make the same “pasta” dish a healthy treat! Seriously an awesome substitute. If you’ve never prepared it before, don’t worry. It’s very simple to make.
I love me some homemade pesto. It’s actually very simple to make your own and it’s so worth it. It’s WAY better than store-bought and equally important: it won’t have sneaky additives or preservatives.
This dish is comfort food without the guilt. Warm. Fresh. Tasty. Healthy. All of the above.
See my recipe for homemade pesto HERE. The link is also included in the recipe box below.
- 1 medium sized spaghetti squash
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 ½ cups fresh basil leaves
- ½ cup shredded parmesan cheese
- 2-4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 good squeeze of fresh lemon juice
- ¼ cup pine nuts, toasted in the oven
- 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes
- ¾ cup olive oil
- salt, pepper, garlic powder to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut the spaghetti squash in half the long way and scrape out the seeds. Drizzle olive oil on the pan and put the halves face down. Bake for about 30 min (depending on the size). I find it’s better to undercook it. You can always throw it in a pan and sautee it with your other ingredients if you need to, but you don’t want it to get soggy by baking it too long.
- Spread out your pine nuts on a cookie sheet or piece of tin foil and throw that in the oven for a few minutes until they turn a golden brown. Careful, it happens quickly!! TIP: you can buy already toasted pine nuts at Trader Joe’s!
- While the spaghetti squash is still cooking, you can make your chicken breast and pesto. Season the chicken breast with salt and pepper and garlic powder. Cook the chicken breast is in a sautee pan with a little olive oil on medium-low heat. Add a little water to the pan and cover. Let it cook for about 7 min on one side. Then flip them and cover for another 5 min or so. It’s so easy and they turn out perfect! Slice them into strips.
- See my recipe for homemade pesto HERE
- The last thing is to cut the cherry tomatoes in half and put them in a pan in the oven set to BROIL. I set mine to high and it only takes about 5 min. The tomatoes will be charred a little and bursting with flavor.
- Toss everything together until it’s well coated in the pesto. Serve with bread and/or salad as a side. I find that spaghetti squash dishes don’t look very pretty…so for a nicer presentation lay a bed of spaghetti squash to your plate. Then add chicken strips. Top with pesto and broiled tomatoes with basil for garnish as seen in my photo. Enjoy your tasty and healthy meal!