Cheesy Chicken & Pesto Spaghetti Squash with Bread & Red Pepper Butter

Cheesy Chicken & Pesto Spaghetti Squash

with Bread & Red Pepper Butter

35 MIN
4 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

To complement this rich chicken (delightfully smothered with cipolline onions and fontina cheese), we're serving it with two dynamic sides: delicate strands of spaghetti squash tossed with basil pesto and fresh tomatoes, and toasted bread lathered with a zesty pepper butter.
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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    680 Cals (est.)
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fresh
ingredients
Cheesy Chicken & Pesto Spaghetti Squash with Bread & Red Pepper Butter
Title
  • 4 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • 2 Sandwich Rolls
  • 2 oz Arugula
  • 1 Spaghetti Squash
  • 4 oz Grape Tomatoes
  • 1 oz Balsamic-Marinated Cipolline Onions
  • ¼ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • ⅓ cup Basil Pesto
  • 2 Tbsps Butter
  • 1 oz Sliced Roasted Red Peppers
  • 4 oz Shredded Fontina Cheese
time-saving
tips & techniques
Prepare & cook the squash
1 Prepare & cook the squash

Remove the butter from the refrigerator to soften. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Wash and dry the fresh produce. 

Using a sharp, sturdy knife,  carefully halve the squash lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop out and discard the pulp and seeds. Drizzle the cut sides with olive oil; season with salt and pepper.

Microwave or oven: MICROWAVE: Working in two batches if necessary, transfer the  prepared squash to a microwave-safe baking dish, cut side down.  Fill with 1/2 inch of water. Microwave on high 3 to 5 minutes, or until the flesh easily pulls away from the skin.  OVEN: Line a sheet pan with parchment paper (or foil). Transfer the prepared squash to the sheet pan, cut side down. Roast 25 to 30  minutes, or until the skin is lightly browned and the flesh easily pulls away from the skin. Transfer the cooked squash to a large bowl to cool slightly.

Prepare the remaining ingredients
2 Prepare the remaining ingredients

Meanwhile, roughly chop the onions. Halve the bread horizontally. Finely chop the peppers. Halve the tomatoes; place in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. 

Cook the chicken
3 Cook the chicken

Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Season with salt and pepper on both sides. In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 1 teaspoon  of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned chicken. Cook 6 to 7 minutes, or until browned. Flip and cook 4 minutes. Evenly top with the chopped onions and fontina. Loosely cover the pan with foil and cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the chicken is cooked through.* Transfer to a plate.

*An instant-read thermometer should register 165°F.

Toast the bread
4 Toast the bread

Meanwhile, line a sheet pan  with foil. Place the halved bread on the foil, cut side up. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt  and pepper. Toast in the oven 7 to 9 minutes, or until the bread is lightly browned and crispy. Remove from the oven. 

Finish the bread
5 Finish the bread

Meanwhile, in a bowl,  thoroughly combine the butter and chopped peppers; season with salt and pepper. Evenly spread the pepper butter onto the toasted bread. Halve crosswise on an angle.

Finish the squash & serve your dish
6 Finish the squash & serve your dish

When cool enough to handle,  using a fork, scrape the flesh of the cooked squash into the bowl; separate any clumps.  Discard the skins. Add the pesto, seasoned tomatoes, arugula, and a drizzle of olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Stir to thoroughly combine. Serve the cooked chicken with the finished squash and finished bread on the side. Garnish the squash with the parmesan. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

Prepare & cook the squash
1 Prepare & cook the squash

Remove the butter from the refrigerator to soften. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Wash and dry the fresh produce. 

Using a sharp, sturdy knife,  carefully halve the squash lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop out and discard the pulp and seeds. Drizzle the cut sides with olive oil; season with salt and pepper.

Microwave or oven: MICROWAVE: Working in two batches if necessary, transfer the  prepared squash to a microwave-safe baking dish, cut side down.  Fill with 1/2 inch of water. Microwave on high 3 to 5 minutes, or until the flesh easily pulls away from the skin.  OVEN: Line a sheet pan with parchment paper (or foil). Transfer the prepared squash to the sheet pan, cut side down. Roast 25 to 30  minutes, or until the skin is lightly browned and the flesh easily pulls away from the skin. Transfer the cooked squash to a large bowl to cool slightly.

2 Prepare the remaining ingredients

Meanwhile, roughly chop the onions. Halve the bread horizontally. Finely chop the peppers. Halve the tomatoes; place in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. 

Prepare the remaining ingredients
Cook the chicken
3 Cook the chicken

Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Season with salt and pepper on both sides. In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 1 teaspoon  of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned chicken. Cook 6 to 7 minutes, or until browned. Flip and cook 4 minutes. Evenly top with the chopped onions and fontina. Loosely cover the pan with foil and cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the chicken is cooked through.* Transfer to a plate.

*An instant-read thermometer should register 165°F.

4 Toast the bread

Meanwhile, line a sheet pan  with foil. Place the halved bread on the foil, cut side up. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt  and pepper. Toast in the oven 7 to 9 minutes, or until the bread is lightly browned and crispy. Remove from the oven. 

Toast the bread
Finish the bread
5 Finish the bread

Meanwhile, in a bowl,  thoroughly combine the butter and chopped peppers; season with salt and pepper. Evenly spread the pepper butter onto the toasted bread. Halve crosswise on an angle.

6 Finish the squash & serve your dish

When cool enough to handle,  using a fork, scrape the flesh of the cooked squash into the bowl; separate any clumps.  Discard the skins. Add the pesto, seasoned tomatoes, arugula, and a drizzle of olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Stir to thoroughly combine. Serve the cooked chicken with the finished squash and finished bread on the side. Garnish the squash with the parmesan. Enjoy!

Finish the squash & serve your dish
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