Chicken and Broccoli Butternut Squash Pasta

gluten freemeat & poultrypaleo
Chicken and Broccoli Butternut Squash Pasta

Chicken and Broccoli Butternut Squash Pasta

SO. DELICIOUS.

This recipe brings me back to the year I studied abroad. For my best friend’s birthday, I visited her where she was studying abroad in Florence, Italy.

There’s a point to this story, I promise!

We went out to dinner for her birthday and ordered all the pizza and pasta. I remember there was a dish there with broccoli rabe and chicken that was absolutely smothered in a creamy alfredo sauce and I practically licked the pan. I dipped every piece of bread I could find in that decadent sauce and savored every single bite.

I also tipped the scale at my all-time high after that trip, around 190 pounds. For a reference point, I’m now about 140-145.

Chicken and Broccoli Butternut Squash Pasta

While not the healthiest dish I’ve ever had, it tops the charts of tastiest meals, for sure. I was reminiscing the other day about that period in my life, and I was brought back to that specific memory of that alfredo dish.

So what’s a health-conscious girl to do? INSPIRALIZE IT.

I love using vegan alfredo sauces. They really do have that great creamy consistency and cheesy taste. While they’re not as WOW as a true alfredo, they do the trick – especially if you’re a healthy eater and have trained your tastebuds to crave more savory flavors than sweet.

Chicken and Broccoli Butternut Squash Pasta

I had to eat it out of the skillet, so I photographed it as such! Truly an amazing dish. It’ll definitely save well in the fridge, although I’d reheat it in a skillet and perhaps add a bit more salt and some vegetable broth to add creaminess.

Today’s my first official week working out of my new Inspiralized headquarters! I can’t wait to show you guys more of the space! Coming soon.

Also, congratulations to our winners of last week’s giveaway! You will be receiving an e-mail today on how to claim your winnings. Thanks to everyone who participated!

Watch our video to learn how to spiralize a butternut squash using the Inspiralizer and subscribe to our YouTube channel to watch more videos:

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Nutritional Information & Recipe

Weight Watchers SmartPoints*: 11 points

*These points were calculated using the official Weight Watchers SmartPoints calculator. We are in no way affiliated with Weight Watchers, we are providing this information based on popular demand.

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Chicken and Broccoli Butternut Squash Pasta

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time35 mins
Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • For the pasta:
  • 1 large butternut squash peeled, Blade C, noodles trimmed
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 boneless and skinless chicken breasts cubed
  • 3 cups broccoli florets
  • red pepper flakes
  • chopped parsley to garnish
  • For the sauce:
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallots
  • 3/4 cup raw cashews soaked in water for at least 2 hours (up to 24), drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth or more as needed to thin
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Lay the butternut squash noodles out on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, season with salt and pepper, and cook for 10-12 minutes or until cooked through but slightly al dente (or cooked to your preference.)
  • Meanwhile, prepare the chicken and broccoli. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once oil is shimmering, add in the chicken and season generously with salt and pepper. Let cook on all sides until browned on the outside, about 7 minutes. Add the broccoli, season with salt and pepper, and cook for about 5 minutes or until broccoli is tender.
  • Meanwhile, prepare the sauce. Place all ingredients into a food processor and pulse until creamy. Taste and adjust, if necessary.
  • When chicken and broccoli is done, add the butternut squash noodles to the pan along with the sauce and red pepper flakes. Toss well to combine.
  • Divide mixture onto four plates and garnish with parsley.

Chicken & Broccoli Butternut Squash Pasta

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26 comments

Michele DeVinney says:
The only thing I've never been able to eat is Alfredo. The heaviness of the sauce always upset my stomach and led to me not even liking it because I knew how I'd suffer! This looks so delicious. Thank you for bringing an Alfredo I can enjoy into my life!
Ali Maffucci says:
So glad to hear you're loving the recipe!
Julia says:
Looks delicious! Could you sub the cashews for something else?
Jen says:
You can make a low calorie vegan alfredo sauce from cauliflower. I know chocolate covered katie has a recipe, but I'm sure there are many others if you google it.
Anonymous says:
To make it vegetarian what would you suggest to replace the chicken? Tofu? Beans?
Ali Maffucci says:
Whatever you'd like! No rules!
Anonymous says:
Do I need to use nutritional yeast? What is it? Don't think my markets or supplement stores sell it.
Ali Maffucci says:
Yes, it gives the dish that cheesy taste! I recommend any healthy cook to have it on hand in their pantry!
Jen says:
In my grocery store you can buy a small bottle from Bragg brand - it's shelved right next to their apple cider vinegar in the vinegar section. (The store employees have no idea what you are talking about if you ask them for it, and they may even look at you like you're crazy.)
Lindsay Manzella says:
OK, since this is not at all an Italian dish, I have to ask: did you order this at a restaurant called the Actor's Bistro in Florence. I remember a chicken and broccoli pasta there that was amazing but not to be found at any other restaurant in Florence (or Italy for that matter).
Ali Maffucci says:
I couldn't tell you the name of the restaurant if my life depended on it! But it wasn't broccoli, it was broccoli rabe!
Susan says:
What sauce can I sub for the vegan Alfredo's
Ali Maffucci says:
You can simply use olive oil and garlic if you'd like, or a pesto!
Laura Haas says:
Ali that was FANTASTIC!! I modified the sauce because my daughter has a cashew allergy...instead I missed up garlic, Greek yogurt, chicken stock, nutritional yeast and parmesean cheese with a pinch of red pepper flakes and it was a huge hit! My entire family raved about it! Keep up the good work girl!
Laura Haas says:
5 stars!
Lauren says:
I tried making this last night. I think something was wrong with my butternut squash because it didn't spiralize easy. Any tips for picking one that's good? Also, I didn't like the cashew taste in the sauce. I didn't use it once I made it and tried it. $8 for cashews at the market too grrr!
I made this last night and it was KILLER good! The only thing I might change is that I could reduce the sauce a bit (or add more veggies, noodles and chicken). But I'm already planning the next time I can make this. LOVE!
Nadine says:
So delicious! Thank you for this great idea of a light sauce ;-) I couldn't find nutritional yeast here in China, but I substituted it with a slice of low fat soft cheese. Thanks for all your nice recipes Ali. My husband made me more than happy with your cooking Book in German. You have a big fan group here! Greetings from Beijing
Merritt says:
This was fantastic! So satisfying...love the sauce, and even more, the texture of the butternut squash noodles. This one's going into regular rotation.
Jodie says:
Five stars for this one Ali. I have been a long term reader of your blog and we have eaten a lot of meals inspired by you, but this is the first of your recipes I have followed completely. In fact I bought nutritional yeast specially. When meal planning this past weekend I asked my husband if he was going to eat what I was having or if he would eat spag bol like our daughters. He said the same as me, but last night ended up eating pasta with the girls. Mine was delicious!!!! I took left overs for lunch today and there was still another serve at home I was looking forward to. It was even better today for lunch! When I got home I discovered he had eaten my last serve for his lunch. He LOVED it. He raved as much as I did. Sorry I didn't mean to write a novel, but I wanted you to know!
Kristy says:
Amazing!
Kim says:
Your blog is really detailed and informative. Thanks
Allison says:
Do you think this work work equally well with lean ground chicken? I have a couple pounds of it in my freezer that I need to use. Every recipe I see calls for fatty (not lean) ground chicken. Thoughts?
Carly Glazer says:
Hi Allison! Yes this recipe would work well with lean ground chicken as well!
Rose Martine says:
These recipes all look amazing. If I had kids, I would totally try them with them! Cheese is my favorite food group so…..
Meaghan says:
Haha! It's the BEST food group!

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