Chicken Butternut Squash Pasta

Who  loves clean eating?! I DO I DO. It’s been over a month since I started the 24 Day Cleanse by Advocare and on the 25th of January I had completed it. I left that experience with tons of new found confidence and the hope that I would perhaps continue on this journey of healthy habits and for the past few weeks it has been a breeze! I am loving all the new recipes I’m trying, and having zero issues when it comes to clean eating I of course keep the 80/20 rule, because being perfect all the time isn’t living in my opinion. My body is also responding favorably when I eat clean, my skin and nails are in much better condition and my attention span has improved. I think that the best part is all the energy that I have now and what I get done during the day.

I was in Whole Foods, yes I know shocker, and I saw while in the produce isle a magazine that was called Clean Eating. Well shoot I thought, let’s look at this since my favorite thing right now is Martha Stewart magazine day. I perused the recipes while the boyfriend was driving up to NH and put tags on ones I wanted to try, yes I’m type A sometimes. This pasta dish that I made the other night blew my mind. I have been kind enough, yes you are welcome, to copy it from my magazine here. Please note I DID NOT invent this recipe, this was from the fine people at Clean Eating Magazine. Let me tell you though, after I tasted this I signed up for two years of this magazine.

Chicken Butternut Squash Pasta
Serves 4
  • Cooking Spray 
  • 2lb Butternut Squash; peeled, seeded and cut into 3/4 inch cubes (about 3 cups worth)
  • 2tsp Olive Oil
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground pepper
  • 3 TB Fresh Sage chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • 10oz Boneless / Skinless Chicken Breast
  • 1 tsp Chili Powder
  • 8oz Whole Wheat Penne
  • 8oz Baby Spinach Leaves
Ok, I can’t follow recipes to a tee, I know what I like and what I don’t so here are the substitutions I made. 
  • Salt – who knows, I season my stuff, prob more like a tablespoon
  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • Boneless / Skinless Chicken Thighs
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line two baking sheets with foil and mist with your cooking spray. Toss the squash with olive oil, salt and pepper (if you are following the exact recipe for salt they want you to use half of the salt and pepper) and put into the oven on one baking sheet. On the other baking sheet sprinkle chicken with the rest of the salt / pepper and the chili powder and put into the oven. 
Bake for about 25 minutes, halfway through toss the squash and flip the chicken. After the 25 minutes take the chicken out and let cool, then take the squash and add 2TB of the sage and garlic, toss and return to the oven for another 2-4 minutes. 
While the chicken and squash are baking cook the pasta al dente according to the package. Save all pasta water when draining to the side, you are going to use some. Meanwhile mist a large skillet and wilt your spinach slightly so it is soft but not totally dehydrated. After the chicken cools take and cut the chicken into about an inch size cubes. 
Combine the squash, the pasta, cut chicken, and 1/3 cup of the pasta water and stir to combine. If it is still a little dry keep adding water until it is slightly moist, I added too much water and was able to just turn the heat on a little while it was all in the pot and cook it off. Taste and season with salt and pepper if desire then serve with parmesan cheese and the remaining sage on top. It also calls for pumpkin seeds if you would like a little crunch. 
That’s it! It takes around an hour to make and I promise you it is phenomenal. If you are like me then you are thinking “what, no sauce on my pasta, as if” but I promise you it is so good, I ate this for dinner and then for two lunches. The boyfriend wasn’t a huge fan as squash and pasta mixed freaks him out, he would like to have that plate that keeps all things separate though so I wasn’t surprised on this. 
Enjoy people, I know I sure did. 


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