Whole30 Day 3: Artichoke Lemon Pesto Chicken Pasta

Ken & I have recently discovered how delicious and wonderful Spaghetti Squash can be.  You can use it instead of spaghetti with sauce and meatballs and I discovered last night that it tastes just as good with pesto and chicken as it does with red sauce.  Last night I made a recipe from PaleOMG for Artichoke Lemon Pesto Chicken Pasta that used the Spaghetti Squash as the “pasta.”  It was DELICIOUS!


  • 1lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed (or chicken thighs if you prefer)
  • 1 large spaghetti squash, cut in half lengthwise (get a BIG one)
  • 12-15 artichoke hearts, cut in half (I used a bag of frozen artichoke hearts that were in halves and quarters, that I had sitting in the freezer from Wegmans)
  • ⅓ cup walnuts
  • 4-5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4-5 tablespoons vegetable broth
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ cup fresh parsley
  • ½ cup fresh basil
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3-5 cups of spinach (I used about 4 cups of spinach but could have used more)


1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Cut squash in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper.  Then bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes until the skin of the squash gives when you poke the outside of it.

2) While the squash is baking, prepare your pesto and chicken: Place a large pan over medium-high heat, add a splash of olive oil and 1 minced garlic clove.  Once the garlic becomes fragrant, add the artichoke hearts.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and let cook until slightly browned and tender on all sides.

Once the artichokes are browned, add them to a food processor along with the walnuts, olive oil, vegetable broth, and second garlic clove.  Puree until smooth.  whole301


Then add the parsley, basil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.  Puree once more until smooth.  Taste and add ingredients to suit your fancy (we ended up adding another clove of garlic, a little more salt and pepper and another handful of basil).whole305

Once pesto is done pureeing, add the chicken to the same pan that you used to sautee the artichokes.  Cook chicken over medium-high heat until browned on all sides.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  whole304

Once chicken is cooked through, add in about 1/4 cup of the pesto to the chicken, along with the spinach and mix well to coat.  Cover and let cook for 2-4 minutes or until the spinach is wilted.

3) Once the Spaghetti Squash is done cooking, use a fork to scoop out the squash into strands of “spaghetti.”  Then mix the squash and chicken mixture together and add however much of the pesto you want on the side.  spaghetti squash

Serve the remaining pesto as sauce for individuals to add as they choose, and garnish with fresh basil if you so desire.  whole306

ENJOY!  We had a bunch of asparagus we had to use up so we had some more steamed asparagus on the side.  But Ken & I both agree that we are a little asparagus’ed out at this point since we’ve had it many nights over the past few weeks.  Time to move on to another vegetable.

After two days in a row of eating plain eggs, plain eggs are getting a little bit boring so this morning I spiced it up a little bit by adding some spinach to my scrambled eggs and they were delicious!  On the side I made myself another “monkey salad.”  Yum 🙂 whole307

This entry was posted in Breakfasts, Meat, Paleo, Poultry, Whole30, Whole30 Challenge and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s