Nothing beats a hearty dinner on a cold winter night! I’m excited to share with you my favorite recipe for Whole Grain Pasta with Grilled Chicken and Butternut Squash. I’ve made this dish countless times, and it’s always a hit with my family. The combination of savory grilled chicken, creamy butternut squash, and nutty whole grain pasta is truly unbeatable. It’s a delicious and nutritious meal that will warm you up and fill you up. Let’s get cooking!
Whole Grain Pasta with Grilled Chicken and Butternut Squash Recipe
- 5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubed
- 2 tablespoons fresh sage, finely minced
- 1 pound whole-grain pasta
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
- Preheat your oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a bowl, combine the chicken breasts, olive oil, sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, and garlic. Mix everything together until the chicken is evenly coated.
- Place the chicken onto the parchment-lined baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.
- While the chicken is baking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.
- Add the cubed butternut squash to the boiling water and cook for 8 minutes.
- In the last minute of cooking, add the whole-grain pasta to the pot and stir until everything is combined.
- Drain the pasta and squash and transfer them to a large bowl.
- Once the chicken is finished baking, remove it from the oven and cut it into thin strips.
- Add the chicken strips to the bowl with the pasta and squash.
- Stir in the sage, Parmesan cheese, butter, and toasted pine nuts.
- Serve the warm pasta with grilled chicken and butternut squash and enjoy!
- Calories: 463
- Fat: 19g
- Saturated fat: 5g
- Carbohydrates: 44g
- Fiber: 7g
- Protein: 28g
- Sodium: 698mg
How can adding grilled chicken and butternut squash to a pasta dish make it a more nutritious meal?
Adding grilled chicken and butternut squash to a pasta dish can make it a more nutritious meal by providing essential nutrients like protein, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. Both grilled chicken and butternut squash are nutrient-rich and can easily be incorporated into any pasta dish.
Grilled chicken is a great source of lean protein and healthy fats. It also provides essential vitamins and minerals such as iron, zinc, and B vitamins. By adding grilled chicken to a pasta dish, you can increase the amount of protein and healthy fats, which helps to keep you full and satisfied for longer.
Butternut squash is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and potassium. It is also rich in dietary fiber, which helps to support digestive health. Adding butternut squash to a pasta dish can provide additional nutrients and help to make the dish more filling and satisfying.
By adding grilled chicken and butternut squash to a pasta dish, you can transform it into a more nutritious meal. It’s a great way to increase the amount of essential nutrients and make it a more satisfying and enjoyable meal.
What are the health benefits of eating whole grain pasta?
The health benefits of eating whole grain pasta are numerous! Not only is it packed with essential vitamins and minerals, but it also boasts a high fiber content that helps to regulate digestion and improve heart health. Additionally, whole grain pasta has a low glycemic index, meaning it won’t cause a spike in blood sugar levels like other refined carbohydrates.
- Eating whole grain pasta can help to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and obesity, as it provides a steady source of energy due to its slow digestion rate. This helps to keep you fuller for longer and prevent overeating.
- Whole grain pasta is also a great source of antioxidants and phytochemicals, which can help to fight disease and reduce inflammation. This makes it a particularly beneficial addition to any diet, as it can help to support a healthy immune system.
- Eating whole grain pasta can also help to reduce cholesterol levels, as it is low in saturated fat and high in fiber. This helps to reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, making it an excellent addition to any healthy diet.
- Finally, whole grain pasta is an excellent source of B vitamins, which are essential for the body’s metabolism and energy production. This makes it a great choice for those looking to boost their energy levels and performance.
In conclusion, eating whole grain pasta provides numerous health benefits. It is packed with essential vitamins and minerals, has a low glycemic index, and is high in fiber and antioxidants. It can help to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and obesity, reduce cholesterol levels, and boost energy levels.
What are some tips for grilling chicken and butternut squash to maximize flavor?
Grilling chicken and butternut squash to maximize flavor is a great way to enjoy these two delicious ingredients combined with whole grain pasta. Here are some tips to help you maximize the flavor of this meal:
- Start with marinating the chicken for at least an hour, or ideally overnight. This will help to tenderize the chicken and add extra flavor. You can use any marinade you prefer, such as Italian dressing, yogurt, or even a teriyaki sauce.
- When prepping the squash, make sure to season it well with salt, pepper, and other herbs and spices. This will help to bring out the natural sweetness of the squash.
- Before grilling the chicken, make sure to oil the grates so the chicken doesn’t stick. You can use a high-heat oil such as avocado or coconut oil.
- Grill the chicken and squash on a medium-high heat, flipping them regularly to ensure even cooking.
- When the chicken and squash are almost done cooking, brush them with a favorite sauce to add extra flavor. Barbecue sauce, teriyaki sauce, or even a citrus glaze would be a great option.
- Serve the grilled chicken and squash over the warm whole grain pasta for a satisfying and flavorful meal.
What are some ways to make this dish even more delicious?
If you’re looking for ways to take your Whole Grain Pasta with Grilled Chicken and Butternut Squash to the next level, then you’re in luck! There are plenty of simple and delicious ways to make this dish even more delicious. Here are just a few ideas to get you started:
- Add a punch of flavor with herbs and spices. A sprinkle of fresh herbs like basil or oregano, a pinch of dried red pepper flakes, or a dash of garlic powder can all instantly liven up the dish.
- Kick up the heat. For an extra kick of flavor, try adding some diced jalapenos or other spicy peppers to the mix.
- Make it cheesy. Top with shredded cheese or a few dollops of ricotta cheese before baking.
- Make it saucy. Add a creamy, cheesy sauce like Alfredo or a flavorful tomato-based sauce for an extra layer of flavor.
- Mix in some veggies. Add some fresh or frozen vegetables like spinach, mushrooms, or bell peppers for a nutritious boost.
With these simple tips, you can turn your Whole Grain Pasta with Grilled Chicken and Butternut Squash into a truly extraordinary dinner.
What are the best sides to pair with this pasta dish?
When it comes to making your Whole Grain Pasta with Grilled Chicken and Butternut Squash, you have a world of options when it comes to sides! To really bring out the flavor of this delicious dish, the best side dishes to pair it with are a light and healthy green salad, a crusty loaf of garlic bread, and a simple but flavorful side of steamed broccoli.
The green salad will provide a crunchy and refreshing contrast to the creamy pasta and tender grilled chicken. To make it, simply toss together a variety of lettuce, chopped vegetables, and a light dressing. For a touch of extra flavor, add some nuts or dried fruit.
The garlic bread is a great way to add a little extra flavor and texture to the meal. It’s also a great way to get some extra carbs in your diet. To make it, simply brush a loaf of crusty bread with a garlic butter spread and bake it in the oven until it’s golden and toasty.
A simple side of steamed broccoli is the perfect way to round out the meal. It’s light and healthy, and with a little garlic and butter added, it pairs perfectly with the pasta and grilled chicken.
No matter what sides you choose, your Whole Grain Pasta with Grilled Chicken and Butternut Squash will be sure to be a hit.