Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti Squash Casserole

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Today is Day 6 for me. Day 5 was a wonderful day! I was passed the stage of the infamous Medifast headache, gone was the drained feeling I had from re-starting again. AND Get this... I actually felt like exercising! That feeling isn't very common for me, but I took advantage of it and did 40 minutes walking on the treadmill. I burned 267 calories to be exact! 


 Now what could probably wrong with a little exercise? Well, on Medifast, you shouldn't start exercising (unless it is already a part of your lifestyle) for at least 3 weeks. This gives your body time to adjust to the lower calorie weight loss plan. Some have even told me exercising slows their losses down. I think I learned the hard way because my scale hasn't budged since Sunday and I just re-started Friday. I am at a stand still. I am not losing as much as I have hoped and I usually I have pretty good losses the first week.  I do know my thyroid meds need to be increased because my doctor mentioned it to me the other day. Now that I have my new prescription in hand, maybe that will help with my losses. Otherwise, I just need to be patient. I didn't gain all this weight in one day so I won't lose it one day either :) 

Here is a new recipe I wanted to share with you guys. I got this recipe from The Detoxinista and it is really good! If you are craving comforting food, then try this! It is creamy, cheesy and oh so good for you! She said it reminds her of a cheesy hash brown casserole and I have to agree. Definitely a family pleaser. I would have never thought of using yogurt to make this dish creamy but it works! I made a few minor changes to make it Medifast friendly as well as added some grilled chicken to complete my Lean. You could always serve the chicken on the side if you like. Just divide the chicken in half which would be 2.25 oz per serving. Also, I wanted to note that the recipe calls for Cheddar. I didn't have any so I used reduced fat mozzarella and it still tasted good! That is why my dish looks lighter and more yellow in color than The Detoxinista's . Enjoy this recipe!

Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti Squash Casserole
Slightly adapted from The Detoxinista

Ingredients: 

For Chicken:

6 to 7 oz raw chicken breasts - should yield 4.5 oz grilled (3/4 Lean)
1/4 tsp Mrs Dash Southwest Chipotle Seasoning or seasoning of your choice (1 Condiment)

For Squash:

3 cups spaghetti squash, cooked (6 Greens)
1 tablespoon light butter, melted (1 Healthy Fat)
1/2 tsp garlic powder (1 Condiment)
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste (2 Condiments)
1/8 tsp black pepper, to taste  (1/4 Condiment)
1 tbsp grated Kraft Parmesan cheese (1 Condiment)
3/4 cup 2% Fage Total Greek yogurt  (1/2 Lean)
3 oz. reduced fat cheddar, shredded and divided (3/4 Lean)
1/4 tsp dried basil (1/2 Condiment)

Directions:
Poke holes on all sides of the spaghetti squash with a metal skewer or a fork. 
Place a paper towel in microwave and place squash on top of paper towel. Microwave in increments of 3 minutes until flesh starts to get soft. I had a medium sized squash and microwaved for about 10 minutes. Let cool. Cut squash in half, lengthwise. Scoop the seeds and the middle strands out with a spoon and discard. Next, scrape the inside of the squash with a fork all the way to the skin. You should get strands that resemble spaghetti. Set aside.

Season chicken with your favorite seasonings. Grill until done. Weigh out 4.5 oz of cooked chicken and then cut chop into pieces. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine melted butter, salt, pepper, Parmesan cheese with the yogurt and 2 oz. of shredded cheddar cheese. Stir in spaghetti squash until combined. Pour spaghetti squash mixture into an 8 inch casserole dish. Top with cooked chicken. Sprinkle the remaining ounce of cheese and dried basil over the top. Put in oven and bake for 30 minutes. The casserole is ready when the top is a light golden brown, which makes for a crunchy crust! Serve immediately.

2 Servings with 1 Lean, 3 Greens, 2.8 Condiments and 1/2 Healthy Fat per serving

*If you would like to use cooked 93% ground beef, you will need 3.75 oz cooked. For shrimp, you will need 5.25 oz cooked. Remember, the meat will be divided into 2 servings so you will actually be eating 1.8 oz of  beef and 2.6 oz of shrimp per serving.


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