Sep 23, 2018
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Today we are making a chicken and spaghetti squash recipe the entire family will rave over, kids included.
Tender spaghetti squash and seared chicken get coated with a creamy garlic sauce for an undeniably delicious meal.
Chicken With Spaghetti Squash
This chicken with spaghetti squash recipe is delicious, elegant, and so easy to make!
In this recipe, we quickly steam the squash in the microwave. Meanwhile, we pan-sear the chicken breasts and make the garlic-butter sauce. The final step is to shred the cooked squash and top it with the pan-seared garlic butter chicken.
The squash is a perfect low-carb swap for regular pasta that soaks up all the garlic sauce flavors. Not only does it taste amazing, but the spaghetti squash lightens it up and provides additional vitamins and fiber.
I also appreciate that the squash can be cooked, shredded, and refrigerated ahead of time. At dinnertime, all that’s left is to prepare the chicken portion, reheat the squash, and serve.
If you prep it ahead, you can cook the squash several different ways. While the microwave is the quickest method, roasting it in the oven adds delicious flavor and is equally simple. You can also make spaghetti squash in the slow cooker, to have it already prepped for you when you’re reading to cook. The choice is yours!
Garlic Chicken and Spaghetti Squash Ingredients
This dish is made with clean and simple ingredients. Aside from the spaghetti squash, most ingredients are already in your fridge and pantry.
- spaghetti squash: a great low-carb substitute for spaghetti. The tender shreds of golden squash have a nutty flavor.
- chicken breasts: use boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs.
- Italian seasoning: to add flavor to the chicken and sauce.
- olive oil: prevents the chicken from sticking to the skillet.
- lemon juice: adds fresh citrus flavor.
- unsalted butter: browns the garlic and creates a rich sauce that coats the chicken and squash.
- garlic: an aromatic that gives the sauce a wonderful aroma and flavor.
- half and half: makes the sauce super creamy.
- red pepper flakes: for a little extra kick.
- grated Parmesan cheese: aged, sharp Parmesan adds a whole new depth of flavor.
- chopped fresh parsley: for garnish, definitely optional.
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It’s a real-food based meal plan created with kid-approved recipes, done-for-you shopping lists, and a weekly prep guide to help families save time in the kitchen while enjoying more nutrient-dense meals day after day.
How to Make Garlic Butter Chicken with Spaghetti Squash
Are you ready to make one of the best chicken recipes of your life? Good! Let’s get to it.
- Microwave the spaghetti squash
Cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds, and prick the skin with a fork. Place one half into a baking dish, fill the cavity with water, and cover the second half. Microwave for 10 minutes or until the skin is softened and the squash shreds easily. See other methods of cooking spaghetti squash here, if you have more time.
- Pan-sear the chicken
Season both sides of the chicken with Italian seasoning, salt, and black pepper. In a large skillet, sear the chicken until the internal temperature reaches 165F; squeeze the lemon juice over the chicken and set it onto a plate.
- Homemade garlic butter
In the same skillet, brown the garlic with the butter, then slowly add in the half and half and seasonings. Stir in the Parmesan and continue to stir until the sauce is thickened. Add the chicken.
Use a fork to shred the spaghetti squash. Scoop the squash onto a plate and top with chicken, the garlic butter sauce, and chopped parsley.
Watch how this recipe comes together!
Serving Chicken Spaghetti Squash
Want to keep it grain-free? Serve this chicken spaghetti squash dish with a side salad or steamed broccoli. I’ve also included a selection of side dish recipes below that would be spot on, and they’re also grain-free!
- Roasted Lemon Asparagus
- Pan-Seared Brussels Sprouts
- Almond Flour Biscuits
- Roasted Fingerling Potatoes
Leftover Spaghetti Squash and Chicken
In the rare case that you have leftovers, you can pack this meal away for a satisfying lunch or dinner later in the week. Place the squash and chicken in individual airtight containers and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
To reheat, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of water to the dish, cover with plastic wrap, and microwave for 2 to 3 minutes until the chicken is heated through and the squash is tender. *The plastic wrap creates a steaming effect which prevents the chicken and sauce from drying out.
Garlic Butter Chicken with Spaghetti Squash
- 1 large spaghetti squash washed
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning divided
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice about 1 lemon
- 1 cup half and half
- ¼ cup unsalted butter
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
- Carefully slice the spaghetti squash in half, lengthwise. Using a spoon, scrape the seeds out and discard. Use a fork to pierce the skin of the squash 6 to 7 times.
- Place one squash half into a microwaveable baking dish. Fill the cavity of the squash with water and place the other half on top, matching the sliced seams of the squash.
- Microwave for 10 minutes, or until the skin is softened and the squash shreds easily with a fork.
- Meanwhile, pat dry the chicken breasts with paper towels. Generously season both sides with 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning, salt, and black pepper.
- In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken breast and cook for 6 minutes on one side or until the bottom is golden brown. Flip and cook for an additional 3 to 5 minutes or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165F.
- Sprinkle the lemon juice over the chicken, turn off the heat, and remove the chicken from the skillet. Set it aside onto a plate and rest for 5 minutes before slicing into diagonal strips.
- Pour the half and half in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 1 minute or until warmed.
- To the same skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook for one minute, constantly stirring, until fragrant.
- Slowly add the half and half, Italian seasoning, and red pepper flakes. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and cook until the sauce is slightly thickened.
- Add the chicken to the skillet and toss to coat with the sauce. Turn the heat to low and bring the mixture to a simmer.
- Use a large fork to shred and scrape the cooked squash onto a plate. Top with chicken and lemon-garlic sauce. Sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley and serve.
- Make sure to heat the half & half prior to adding it to the skillet. This will prevent the sauce from curdling.
- If you don’t have spaghetti squash, you can serve this recipe over regular or gluten-free pasta.
This recipe made chicken and spaghetti squash one of my favorite low-carb dinner ever! It’s so good and I don’t miss pasta at all!! Yummy!!
Made this last night and it was a HIT! My fiance who never reviews anything told me I HAD to leave a review for this recipe. The only adjustment or addition I made was a few tablespoons of pecorino romano cheese because we all love the extra bite and pounded the chicken breasts before cooking. This has been saved and added to our rotation! Even our 6-year-old was raving about it! Thank you!
Thank you for coming back and sharing how much you enjoyed this garlic butter chicken recipe! You made my day by sharing that your 6-yo enjoyed it.
Delish, like eating desert for dinner. #pandemicmeals
I”m glad you enjoyed the garlic butter chicken with spaghetti squash recipe, Bob!
This was so tasty! Just one question.. The sauce was cooking perfectly but right before I was about to pull the chicken off, it seemed like the butter started to separate from the rest of the sauce. Could I possibly not have heated the half and half up long enough? Or did I just leave it on a bit too long? Any tips are appreciated!
Hi Christa, this “separation” sometimes happens when the half and half is too cold when it goes in the pan. As it’s heated, the dairy proteins separate. You can avoid this by warming it up first and whisking it continuously. I am so glad you enjoyed the recipe!
Yum! My picky 8 year old who never eats seasoned food actually liked the chicken. He wasn’t keen on the spaghetti squash but it’ll take any win I can get. My husband & I loved all of it. Plus I made extra chicken so there are leftovers!!
Can coconut milk be substituted for the half and. Half
Food was delicious but may need to note that when adding the half & half, that you need to be sure the pan is cool. Iron skillets apparently hold too much heat and will curdle the milk. It tasted fine, just had an off texture.
Just made this tonight and it tastes delicious!
I’m so glad you enjoyed it Roxane!
My family loved it though the sauce was kind of curdled.
Made this meal last night……delicious,! Loved by the whole family. I was told to “put it in the rotation” of favorite dinners. Appreciate the detailed recipe directions, easy to follow.
Its in our regular rotation as well!
Made this tonite for my mom who never had spaghetti squash before so I was hesitant. We loved it. I did add a bit of wine because my lemon was a bit dry. The combination was great!
Is that correct that it is only two boneless skinless chicken breasts for four servings?
Yes, two boneless chicken breasts are about 1 pound, at 4ounces of protein per person and the spaghetti squash is a generous portion. Of course, you can add a third.
How was it with the wine in place of lemon?
Going to try it substituting white wine for the lemon, I love this recipe just do not have any lemon, so I will improvise and try with lemon at a later date, I will let you all know how it turns out
can I use 1% milk instead?
you can, but it might be a bit … runny.
great dish, made it last night……thanks for sharing
Thank you for trying!
This was very good, thank you.
We love spaghetti squash recipes. thanks for this one!
ANOTHER WINNING RECIPE AT MY HOUSE! Thank you Laura.
I made this last night. it was SO GOOD!!
So good. I did everything in the same pan though and did the squash in the oven.