Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti Squash Boats
Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti Squash Boats are high-veggie, low-carb, with all the flavors of classic chicken parmesan. Tender bites of chicken and homemade tomato sauce are served over healthy “spaghetti” (squash) & topped with melty mozzarella.
A hot topic in the wellness world is the act of practicing gratitude. The thinking is that actively and regularly taking note of things that are going right in your world results in enhanced happiness and improved overall health.
I mean, it makes sense, right? Focusing on all that is good and positive sounds a heck of a lot more appealing than dwelling on things that are negative. And yet, it still takes effort and intention to make this a regular practice.
Sometimes, if you’re not sure where to begin, just being thankful for a beautiful day or abundant sunshine can be the perfect starting point.
One thing I’m crazy grateful for at the moment is the mild winter season we’re having. Regular readers know I am not a cold weather kind of girl. Yes, it’s still chilly here on the east coast, but we’re not up to our knees in snow and, now that we’ve rounded the corner into February, warmer & longer days don’t feel too far off. That’s definitely something to be thankful for! I’ll take it!
This is a time of year that a lot of people start wanting to eat lighter in preparation to feel their best in upcoming spring and summer styles, but are also still craving warming comfort foods.
These Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti Squash Boats – try saying that five times fast! Phew, that’s a mouthful! – are the perfect balance between healthy & light and warm & comforting.
I love, like LOVE, old fashioned chicken parmesan. It’s always been a go-to when I eat out at Italian restaurants, but talk about a calorie and fat (not the good kind) bomb.
And I certainly love pasta, but I might just love low-carb veggie versions of noodles even more. Zucchini noodles (check out my fave way to eat the zoodles here) and spaghetti squash top my list of favorite veggies turned pasta.
If you’ve ever struggled to cut through a squash, this one’s a game changer. Pop your whole squash in the microwave 2-4 minutes before cutting. It softens the skin so cutting is made approximately 567x easier.
I’ll pop mine in maybe for 2 minutes, check it, and then microwave another minute or two till I can poke a knife more easily through the skin. No more battling with roly-poly hard-as-a-rock squashes or worrying about losing a finger. 😳 #thestruggleisreal
Here, tender bites of chicken in a homemade tomato sauce are mixed with freshly roasted spaghetti squash, spooned back into the squash shells and topped with mozzarella. Then it’s a quick trip under the broiler till the cheese is perfectly melty.
Everyone gets their own spaghetti squash boat, which is just so fun to eat. Seriously. And thanks to the fiber content of the squash, SO filling. You’ll never miss the pasta or breading in traditional chicken parmesan.
Feel free to sub parmesan for mozzarella or use a combination of the two. Whatever works for you! This has definitely become one of my favorite ways to make spaghetti squash. I hope you’ll try it!
If you make this recipe, use #heartandstove on Instagram so I can check out your creations!
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 1-2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces (I used one, but depends how much chicken you want/need!)
- 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning or dried oregano, divided
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 28oz can whole, peeled plum tomatoes (can also used crushed tomatoes)
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1/4 cup red wine, optional but recommended
- pinch of sugar
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 4 oz mozzarella cheese, cut into small pieces
- Slice spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Pour 1 tbsp olive oil over cut sides of squash and season with salt and pepper. Roast on baking sheet at 375 degrees about 40 minutes or until fork tender.
- While the squash is roasting, heat remaining 1 tbsp olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté chicken pieces with 1/2 tsp italian seasoning or dried oregano till cooked through, about 5 minutes. Transfer chicken from skillet to a plate, cover with foil to keep warm and set aside.
- Sauté onion in the skillet 3-4 minutes, then add garlic and sauté another 1-2 minutes.
- Add tomatoes (if using whole plum tomatoes, break up with a spoon or your hands), tomato paste, wine, sugar, and salt/pepper to taste to the skillet, stirring to combine. Bring sauce to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer 20-30 minutes.
- Remove squash from oven and use a fork to “shred” into spaghetti-like strands, careful not to puncture the skin. Add shredded spaghetti squash, chicken, and parsley to the sauce, stirring to combine.
- Spoon mixture back into the squash skins. Top with mozzarella & place under broiler 3-5 minutes until cheese is melted.