Inspiration: While I was pregnant with Ben, I whipped up a bunch of meals to throw in the freezer, and one of the items that I made was a big batch of pesto. I thought that a casserole like this – so perfect and comforting in the winter time – would be a great way to use up the last of it.
What We Loved: I always find that spaghetti squash is something that needs a lot of add-ins to make it really flavorful, and the good thing about this dish is that it really has a lot going on. It’s cheesy (cream cheese is just the best in casserole-type dishes like this); it has plenty of rich, garlicky pesto; and the chunks of nicely browned chicken add great texture and protein. Brandon remarked that he always loves casserole-type dishes that contain diced chicken, and I have to agree with him – there’s just something about chicken in a dish like this that really turns it into a comfort food meal. And to finish it off, the roasted tomatoes add a nice pop of sweet flavor.
Tips: As is usually the case, I don’t think that more cheese would be a bad thing. Next time, I might up the cream cheese to about 6 ounces for an even creamier texture.
Cheesy Pesto Spaghetti Squash Bake with Chicken and Tomatoes
Source: Original Recipe
1 small spaghetti squash, cooked and seeded
2 chicken breasts, cooked and diced
4 oz cream cheese, softened
6 tablespoons pesto
Kosher salt and black pepper
1/2 pint grape tomatoes, each sliced in half
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1. Scoop out the spaghetti squash strands into a large mixing bowl.
2. Add the chicken, cream cheese, and pesto to the bowl. Mix well to combine.
3. Season well with Kosher salt and black pepper. Be liberal with the salt – spaghetti squash needs it. Taste test until you’re happy with the seasoning.
4. Pour the mixture into a baking dish. Top with the grape tomatoes and the Parmesan cheese.
5. Bake at 350 degrees F until the casserole is heated through and the cheese on top is melted and beginning to brown.