By Jennifer Gendron, PTS/FIS

Another day of success for eating clean, but a little short on physical activity!

I want to share with you a recipe that I tried tonight for supper that was absolutely delicious!  This recipe also came through Jason’s Functional Training and I highly recommend it.  You can partially prepare it ahead for busy days (like this one was for me today!)  I cooked the spaghetti squash and chicken breasts last night so I could put it all together quickly when I got home.  Here is the recipe:

Jason’s Functional Training Studio – Cheesy Pesto Chicken and Veggie Stuffed Spaghetti Squash
Author: Jenn Laughlin of Peas and Crayons

•2 medium-small spaghetti squash [6-7 inches long]
•2 chicken breasts
•½ cup pesto, extra to taste
•1-2 cups fresh baby spinach, torn/chopped
•1 extra large carrot, shredded
•1 medium red bell pepper pepper, chopped
• salt and pepper, to taste
•8 oz low fat shredded cheese
•1-2 TBSP fresh parsley to garnish

1.Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F.
2.Slice your spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. For easy cutting, feel free to stick each squash in the microwave for 5 minutes to soften it up just a tad. The knife slides through way easier this way!
3.Next grab a lipped baking sheet or a rimmed baking dish.
4.To prevent sticking, rub the cut side of the squash with a teeny bit of olive oil or simply place a little water inside your baking dish. Both work great!
5.Place inside a baking dish or atop rimmed, lined baking sheet [some liquid will escape] and roast face-down for 30-40 minutes, or until tender and easily pierced with a fork.
6.Cooking time will vary a bit depending on the size of your squash, and the once rock-hard exterior of the squash will be visibly softened.
7.The squash can be roasted and stored in the fridge for a few days if you’d like to meal prep and plan ahead for a speedier dinner. You can also make the whole shebang one weekend and pop it in the fridge until about 30 minutes before dinnertime. Wind up with a little bit leftover? It reheats marvelously the following day! Now let’s get back to the recipe!
8.While the squash roasts, cook chicken via your favorite method – squirrel away leftovers from the previous night’s dinner. I poached mine.
9.Chop chicken into bite sized pieces and toss with pesto.
10.Set aside.
11.In a small pot, heat a drizzle of olive oil to medium-high heat and sauté your bell pepper and carrot for a few minutes until tender. Next add the spinach and pesto chicken and stir to wilt the spinach.
12.Season with salt and pepper to taste.
13.Next add your cheese to the hot mixture. Mix a little over half the cheese in with the chicken and veggies and save the rest for topping.
14.To stuff the squash you can simply pile on your pesto chicken and veggies or fluff the squash first with a fork before stirring in all you yummy mix-ins so there’s yummy squash in every bite!

I did not have any pesto so I mixed in a little spaghetti sauce.  It turned out delicious and even looked just about like the picture that came with the recipe!  This one is mine:

I also added some mushrooms and zucchini to the veggies I stuffed it with.  As a side, we had steamed vegetables – asparagus and beets.  Both packed full of nutrients!

Exercise today consisted of only a body sculpt class – I came up short on cardio.  That is the hardest thing for me to fit in when my days get busy so still needs some work.  Tomorrow will be another day . . .

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