This pesto chicken spaghetti squash bake will squash your pasta cravings (see what I did there?) for sure! It’s suitable for a wide array of eating styles including Whole30, Paleo, ketogenic, low-carb, dairy-free, gluten-free and grain-free.
Last week I posted this really yummy dairy-free pesto recipe, which has been incredible while on Whole30. It’s been one of my favorite ways to get extra fresh herbs into my diet. Basil is a great source of antioxidants and polyphenols, and also has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It is loaded with vitamins and minerals, plus it is just downright tasty, am I right?
This pesto chicken spaghetti squash bake is a great way to get those nice benefits of fresh basil into your diet. Spaghetti squash is one of my favorite squash, as it is fairly low in carbs, and can be suitable for a low-carb, ketogenic diet in moderation. It is high in fiber, and relatively low in carbs at approximately 5 net carbs per cup.
You can prepare the pesto ahead of time, which means making this recipe is fairly straightforward. You’ll start by cutting your spaghetti squash in half and scrape out the seeds and strings as if you were gutting a pumpkin. I recommend using a really sharp knife, and bracing the squash against something when you go to cut it.
It can be a kitchen hazard to cut if you are not careful. Next, you’ll want to toss it in the oven at 350F until soft, approximately 40-45 minutes. Depending on the size of the spaghetti squash, it may need more or less time in the oven. I recommend getting a medium size squash for this recipe.
While the squash is cooking, cook your chicken until there is no pink left. Add in your spinach and saute until wilted.
Once you can easily puncture the squash with a fork, the squash is done. Let it cool until you can comfortably handle it. Using a fork, scrape out the spaghetti squash into a large baking dish.
Mix in the cooked chicken, spinach, pesto, tomatoes, coconut milk and salt. Stir until fully incorporated and then toss back into the oven for 10-15 minutes to bake. You can broil for one or two minutes at the very end, if you prefer. Now you are all ready to serve your delicious pesto chicken spaghetti squash bake!
I hope you enjoy this pesto chicken spaghetti squash bake, it is a new recipe for me, but one I will certainly be making again soon. While I don’t necessarily recommend making it on a routine basis, since it is somewhat time consuming, it’s definitely worth the extra effort required. It’s great for special occasions such as a date night or a pot luck. Let me know if you try this recipe, I would love to know what you think!
Pesto Chicken Spaghetti Squash Bake (Whole30, Paleo, Low-Carb)
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Cut spaghetti squash in half, using a sharp knife. Be careful to hold it steady so the squash does not roll while you are trying to cut it. Remove seeds and guts with a spoon.
- Place spaghetti squash cut side down in the oven for 40-45 minutes, or until the skin can be easily punctured with a fork.
- Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes.
- In the mean time, cook chicken and fresh spinach until chicken is no longer pink.
- Cut cherry tomatoes in half.
- Prepare a batch of pesto.
- When spaghetti squash has cooled, scrape all of the meat out. It will form strands that resemble spaghetti as you remove it from the skin. Discard skin.
- Place spaghetti squash in a large baking dish along with coconut milk, pesto, cooked chicken, cooked spinach and tomatoes and stir to combine.
- Place in oven for 10-15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Enjoy!