Baked Chicken Parmesan with Zoodles

Italian food is perhaps my favorite type of cuisine. Warm creamy pastas, fresh basil, italian spiced meats and gooey garlic bread can’t be beat! Part of my love affair with Italian food revolves around my aunt’s homemade marinara sauce. We have been spoiled for years now with hand delivered cases of her homemade sauce, and now the store-bought varieties just don’t do it for me. The recipe is top secret, but maybe one of these days she’ll teach me her magical ways!

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Hubby and I love chicken parmesan, but know this isn’t always the healthiest choice. From the chicken being fried in oil and then smothered in cheese to the copious amounts of pasta that it is served with, this can be a total diet bomb! I was determined to come up with a healthier alternative that maintains all of the flavor of traditional chicken parm, but with better nutrition stats.

My simple strategy was to bake the chicken instead of fry it and swap half the pasta for zoodles. Since the hubby is a pasta lover, I knew that mixing the zoodles in with regular pasta would be a sure fire way to keep him enthusiastic about the dish. Baking the chicken still provides the crispy texture, but saves the additional calories from frying in oil. Not to mention, it saves the mess that comes along with frying!

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My sister-in-law filled me in on a great way to prep the zoodles- “sweating them out”. By baking them at low heat (200 degrees) for 20-30 minutes, some of the water is released from the zoodles and they soften slightly. This was the perfect way to avoid the watery mess that can come along with zoodles after they are prepared, while still maintaining a tender crisp texture.

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After the zoodles are prepped, bread the chicken. Run through the egg mixture, followed by the breadcrumbs and then onto the greased baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 35 minutes.

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While the chicken is cooking, prepare the pasta and warm the marinara sauce. Combine the zoodles and pasta. Serve chicken atop bed of zoodles/pasta, top with marinara sauce and parmesan cheese. Enjoy!

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Check out the recipe below and let us know if you give it a try!

Baked Chicken Parmesan with Zoodles
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 2 zucchini- spiraled
  • ½ package of pasta- I used linguine
  • 1 pound chicken thighs
  • 4 oz Italian seasoned panko bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 1-2 cups marinara sauce- for topping
  • Parmesan cheese- for topping
  • 4 oz monterrey jack cheese- for topping
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees
  2. Spiralize zucchini and place onto baking sheet that is lined with a paper towel. Bake at 200 for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
  3. Increase oven temperature to 375 degrees
  4. Beat egg in baking dish
  5. Place breadcrumbs in another separate baking dish
  6. Dip chicken into egg and then into breadcrumbs and place on lined, greased baking sheet.
  7. Bake chicken for 35 minutes or until fully cooked
  8. Add sliced cheese for topping 2-3 minutes before chicken is done.
  9. While chicken is baking, cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain, rinse and set aside.
  10. Heat marinara sauce. Set aside.
  11. Combine zucchini noodles and pasta noodles in pan.
  12. Serve chicken atop bed of pasta/zoodles and top with parmesan to taste.

chicken parm collage

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  1. […] they are, and with a mild flavor they are always hubby and kiddo approved. I let the zoodles sweat in the oven at 200 degrees for about 30 minutes. Remove and set […]

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