Creamy Pesto Chicken Bake

Creamy Pesto & Chicken Bake 1.jpg

Pesto lovers, rejoice! I sure am! I love this nut-free pesto already, but adding a little cream to it just makes it so much extra.

And, you know I love doing some type of casserole for my meal prep…this one was no exception! Beyond being flavor-packed, it kept and reheated well for a few lunches! On the macronutrient side, the coconut cream gives it a nice does of healthy fat to round out those carbohydrates.

As far as those cute little tomatoes…if you haven’t reintroduced them just yet, no worries! Omit them and add in something in it’s place — I’m a huge fan of asparagus here! Give some a squeeze of lemon, then toss in with the bake in place of the tomatoes!

Yield: 4-6
Author:

Creamy Pesto Chicken Bake

prep time: 20 Mcook time: 35 Mtotal time: 55 M
Creamy, savory, grain and dairy free!

ingredients:

For the Chicken
  • 2 large free-range chicken breasts
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 2 Sprigs Fresh Rosemary, stemmed
For the Creamy Pesto
  • 2 cups fresh basil
  • 1 cup fresh parsley
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/8 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup Olive Oil
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp Nutritional Yeast
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 1 can full fat coconut cream
For the Spaghetti Squash and Assembly
  • 1 medium squash, cut length-wise and seeds removed.
  • Prepared Chicken
  • Prepared Pesto
  • 10 Cherry Tomatoes, cut in half (Optional, omit for AIP)
  • 1 1-2 cups spinach, hand torn
  • 1/2-1 tsp Sea Salt (to taste)
  • 1-2 tsp Garlic Powder (to taste)

instructions:

How to cook Creamy Pesto Chicken Bake

Chicken
  1. Coat the chicken in seasonings
  2. In a skillet, add the olive oil and heat to low-medium heat.
  3. Add chicken and cook until done through. Cut into cubes when done.
Creamy Pesto
  1. Combine all ingredients EXCEPT coconut cream in a food processor. Process on low-medium until done.
  2. Pour pesto sauce into a skillet. Add the coconut cream and stir well.
  3. Heat in medium until warm through.
Spaghetti Squash and Assembly
  1. In a pressure cooker (instant pot), add 1 cup of water. Stack the squash halves on top of the insertable wire rack. Cook on manual for 7 minutes. ***an oven may also be used, utilizing a glass baking dish. Cook for approx 45 mnts***
  2. Quick release pressure at end of cycle.
  3. "Shred" inside of squash with a fork into long ribbons.
  4. Place in a glass baking dish (9x13)
  5. To the Spaghetti Squash, add the chicken.
  6. Add the tomatoes and spinach
  7. Pour the Creamy Pesto Sauce over it all. Add additional seasonings to taste.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes until the pesto sauce bubbles along the sides.
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