I have a love/hate relationship with pasta. Oh, don't get me wrong....I love it, but my waist line does not. One of the first items I remove from my menu planning when I am trying to lose weight is pasta. This is why spaghetti squash is such a nice option.
When raw, the flesh is solid and similar to other squash, but once cooked the flesh falls away from the fruit in ribbons or strands like typical spaghetti. Its full of folic acid, vitamin A and is low in calories.
Chicken, Spinach and Artichoke Spaghetti Squash Boats
1 large spaghetti squash, cut in half with seeds removed
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
salt and pepper
1 pound chicken breasts, cubed
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup chicken broth
3 tablespoons cream cheese
1/3 cup Greek yogurt
15 oz can artichoke hearts, drained
2 cups fresh baby spinach
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan
2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley (optional)
Preheat oven to 425F.
Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil in each half of spaghetti squash and season with salt and pepper. Place face down on a lined baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until squash is tender and shreds easily with a fork.
Drizzle 2 tablespoons oil in a medium skillet over medium heat and add cubed chicken. Season with salt and pepper and cook 6-8 minutes or until chicken is browned and cooked through. Remove chicken from pan.
Add last 1 tablespoon of oil into same skillet over medium heat and add garlic. Saute garlic until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add cornstarch to the garlic and reduce heat to low. Whisk until a thick paste forms (you may need to add a drizzle more of oil).
Slowly add the milk and chicken broth and continue to stir. Add the cream cheese and yogurt and stir to combine.
Add the artichoke hearts and spinach. Let simmer together for 3-5 minutes. Add the chicken to the artichoke spinach mixture and heat through for approximately 305 minutes.
To assemble: Shred the insides of the squash with a form to form "noodles". Fill each half with equal parts chicken mixture. Top half with equal amounts of mozzarella.
Set oven to broil and broil squash halves for 3-5 minutes, or until cheese melts and bubbles.
Top each squash half with Parmesan cheese and a sprinkle of parsley.