Thursday, June 20, 2013

Chicken Parm, Lightened Up

OH...MY...GOODNESS! We tried this recipe the other night and it was FABULOUS! I don't know why I have never thought of cooking chicken parm like this before. I'm so glad that I came across it on my favorite site SkinnyTaste. This lady, Gina, is simply amazing at creating healthier versions of our favorite foods. This happens to be one of those delicious meals that you won't even miss all those extra calories or carbs! Using spaghetti squash to replace your pasta is a fantastic idea. Really its all about the texture and the spaghetti squash gives you just that. It really tricks you into thinking you are eating spaghetti. Using grilled chicken instead of breaded chicken helps to cut down on the carbs and the extra calories, and really who doesn't love grilled chicken?!
Oh and if your wondering if it  will be liked by all...yes. My 18 month old gobbled it down just about as fast as my husband and I.


2 small/medium ripe spaghetti squash
salt and fresh pepper, to taste
4 thin chicken cutlets, about 3 oz each
pinch garlic powder
1/4 tsp oregano
2 cups quick marinara sauce, warm
1 cup part skim shredded mozzarella (For GF, shred the cheese yourself, don't buy already shredded)
Fresh basil ribbons for garnish


Preheat oven to 350°. Cut the squash in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds and fibers with a spoon. Place on a baking sheet, cut side up and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast about an hour or until the skin gives easily under pressure and the inside is tender.

If you prefer the microwave, cut squash in half lengthwise, scoop out seeds and fibers and place on a microwave safe dish and cover. Microwave 8-9 minutes.

Meanwhile, while the squash is roasting, season chicken cutlets with salt, pepper, garlic powder and oregano. Heat a grill pan (or a George formal grill) over medium-high heat, when hot grill chicken on both sides until cooked through, about 3-5 minutes. Set aside on a dish.

Remove the spaghetti squash from the oven or microwave and carefully fluff the spaghetti-like strands on each half with a fork, leaving the squash in the shell. Season with salt and pepper, then spoon about 1/4 cup marinara in each boat.

Slice the chicken on the diagonal and place each piece on top of each squash half. Top the chicken with 1/4 cup each of remaining marinara sauce, then top with cheese and place back into the hot oven and cook until the cheese is melted and the sauce is hot, about 12 minutes. Garnish with fresh basil and serve with parmesan cheese on the side if desired.

**Randi's Side Notes**
~ I would personally say that garnishing with the fresh basil is an absolute MUST!
~ It can be a little bit difficult to eat it right out of the squash itself, although it doesn't look quite as pretty, I ended up dumping mine out on my plate and swirling it all together.
~ Try using your favorite dairy free cheese to make this recipe work for you if you can't have dairy.

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