If you’re looking for the best spaghetti squash recipes with chicken, look no further than this always popular, always good Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Spaghetti Squash. It hits all the right flavor spots for a dinner that is so loved that you’ll want to hide the leftovers just for yourself!
This recipe was originally published March 18, 2017; updated October 7, 2021.
Buffalo Chicken Spaghetti Squash is so good & good for you
Have you ever enjoyed a recipe so much that you just don’t want the leftovers to end? We promise this is one of those. Especially if you’re a buffalo-sauce lover. This unexpected combination of tender spaghetti squash and creamy buffalo-smothered chicken and vegetables makes for a meal that you can love again and again. In fact, we’ve been known to tuck the leftovers waaaaay in the back corner of the fridge where our husbands and kids won’t find them. Shhhhh, don’t tell!
This recipe was inspired by our wildly popular Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken that has been loved by thousands of you. If you enjoy the classic combinations of buffalo-flavored dishes, then this one has it all. A tangy, spicy sauce? Check. Crisp and crunchy veggies? Check. A cool, creamy drizzle of Ranch Dressing and a sprinkle of blue cheese? Check and Check.
Ingredients to make buffalo chicken spaghetti squash
It takes only a handful of real-food ingredients to bring this delicious recipe to your table. Here’s what you need:
- Chicken breast – you’ll need already cooked chicken that you coarsely shred or chop; can also use chicken thighs or turkey, or make it quick with meat from a rotisserie chicken
- Spaghetti squash – grab a medium size (about 2- 2 ½-pounds) spaghetti squash
- Celery – can also use chopped shallots, leeks, or carrots in place of the celery
- Green onions – you’ll use both the white and green parts of the green onions
- Red bell pepper – can use an orange or yellow bell pepper, too
- Buffalo sauce – use your favorite buffalo sauce (we like Tessemae’s Mild Buffalo Sauce) or make your own using our easy Homemade Buffalo Sauce recipe
- Ranch dressing – use any brand of your favorite ranch dressing (we like Tessemae’s Creamy Ranch Dressing) or make our Homemade Paleo Ranch Dressing; omit the ranch dressing for dairy-free or Whole30
- Crumbled blue cheese – blue cheese is the perfect, creamy topping for this dish; omit for dairy-free or Whole30
Is Buffalo Chicken-Stuffed Spaghetti Squash healthy?
When you want to find more spaghetti squash recipes with chicken, look no further than this always-good meal. This recipe for Buffalo Chicken Spaghetti Squash provides well-rounded nutrition in the form of healthy carbohydrates, lean protein, and good-for-you fats. Here are some stand-out ingredients:
- Spaghetti squash – just one cup of spaghetti squash provides nearly 10% of your daily fiber needs; this low-carb winter squash is also a rich source of antioxidant vitamin C, as well as important minerals like potassium and manganese
- Chicken – the amino acids in chicken help you build muscle tissue and bone mineral density, which is important at every age. The protein in chicken can also help you feel fuller for longer, helping with weight management and even reducing the risk of heart disease
- Vegetables – like nearly all of our recipes, we’re always looking for a way to add more nutritious vegetables to your plates. This recipe features celery, bell pepper, and green onions to add not only more important vitamins, but also great flavor.
- Buffalo sauce – this popular condiment is made from spicy peppers, which contain an active ingredient called capsaicin. This fat-soluble molecule has been linked to increased life expectancy, improved digestion, fewer headaches, lowered blood pressured, and boosted metabolism. Use our recipe to Make Your Own Buffalo Sauce to reign in the sodium and oils found in some commercial brands.
- Blue cheese – like all cheeses, blue cheese is a great source of calcium and protein, necessary to help grow and protect bones. A little goes a long way, so you can add mucho flavor to this dish without going overboard on saturated fat and sodium.
how does buffalo chicken spaghetti squash fit in special diets?
Our specialty is creating recipes that you can easily adapt for anyone in your household who may have a food allergy and may need or want to follow a special diet. Here’s how our Buffalo Chicken-Stuffed Spaghetti Squash can work for a variety of people:
Gluten-free: This recipe is naturally gluten-free, containing all whole real-food ingredients that don’t contain any gluten
Grain-free: Since we’ve used spaghetti squash as the base of this recipe, it is a naturally grain-free dish
Dairy-free: You can easily make this dish dairy-free by omitting the ranch dressing and blue cheese. Or, find dairy-free alternatives to these, such as our Homemade Dairy-Free Ranch Dressing or Daiya Blue Cheeze Dairy-Free Dressing
Nut-free: Even though spaghetti squash has a somewhat nutty flavor, there are no nuts in this dish. It is safe for someone with a nut or tree nut allergy
Paleo and Whole30: By omitting the ranch (or using our Paleo Ranch Dressing Recipe) and omitting the blue cheese, you can make this recipe fit for Paleo and Whole30 eating
how to cook spaghetti squash
Cooking spaghetti squash at home is an easy and rewarding experience. The cooked squash creates strands that mimic the shape of pasta. We’re not saying spaghetti squash is a stand-in for spaghetti. But if you’re trying to cut back on carbohydrates or cut out gluten- or grain-foods, it is an option. Plus, it’s incredibly nutritious and tastes good. For step-by-step photo instructions to cook spaghetti squash, read our post How to Cook Spaghetti Squash in the Oven.
Love Buffalo Sauce? Then try these recipes
We love our buffalo sauce here at The Real Food Dietitians. Here are some other fan-favorite recipes that employ the spicy-savory flavor in delicious ways.
How to store buffalo chicken spaghetti squash leftovers
Store any leftover squash-chicken filling in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to three days. The mixture can be reheated in a glass microwave-safe dish or in a pan on the stovetop. Leftovers are delicious as is, and also taste great over salad greens or in a sandwich wrap.
- 1 ¼ lbs chicken breast, cooked and shredded
- 1 medium spaghetti squash, halved (about 2– 2 ½ lbs.)
- 2 ribs celery, thinly sliced
- 2 green onions, white and green parts thinly sliced
- ½ cup diced red bell pepper
- ½ cup purchased buffalo sauce or use our Homemade Buffalo Sauce
- ¼ cup creamy ranch dressing or use our Homemade Paleo Ranch Dressing (optional)
- ¼ cup crumbled blue cheese (optional)
To roast the squash:
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Slice both ends from squash and discard. Stand squash up on one of its cut ends and use a large knife to cut the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop seeds and stringy insides out using a large spoon. Place squash cut-side down on the baking sheet.
- Bake for 30-40 minutes or until squash is tender. Baking time will depend on the size of your squash (larger squash requiring a longer cook time). When squash is tender, allow to it cool slightly before using a fork to gently scrape the squash flesh into a large bowl. Reserve the squash shells.
- While squash is roasting, cook the chicken.
To cook the chicken:
- Directions for Instant Pot: Insert the rack into the inner pot. Add 1 cup water or broth. Lay the chicken on the rack. Secure lid and select ‘Poultry’ setting and increase time to 17 minutes (19 minutes if the breasts are really thick). At the end of the cooking time, allow pressure to naturally release for 5 minutes then flip the vent valve and release any remaining pressure. Move chicken to a cutting board to cool slightly before shredding with two forks.
- Directions for Stovetop: Place a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon avocado oil, olive oil, or coconut oil and swirl the pan to coat with the oil. Add chicken and ½ cup water. Once the water begins to simmer, reduce heat and cover. Cook chicken for 15-18 minutes or until cooked through. Move chicken to a cutting board to cool slightly before shredding with two forks.
To assemble the stuffed squash:
- In a large bowl, place squash shreds, shredded chicken, celery, green onions, bell pepper, and buffalo sauce. Toss until well mixed and coated. Spoon the squash-chicken mixture into the reserved squash shells. Place the stuffed shells on the baking sheet and bake in 350°F oven for 10-15 minutes or until heated through.
- Serve drizzled with ranch dressing and top with crumbled blue cheese, if desired.
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- Serving Size: 1/4th of the recipe
- Calories: 308
- Fat: 14 g
- (Sat Fat: 3 g)
- Sodium: 582 mg
- Carbohydrate: 13 g
- (Fiber: 3 g
- Sugar: 6 g)
- Protein: 36 g
© The Real Food Dietitians
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Photo Credit: The photos in this blog post were taken by Jess of Plays Well with Butter.
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Jessica is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist living in Boulder, CO with her husband and two daughters. She’s been described as a ‘real food evangelist’ and loves sharing her knowledge with others to help them break free of the diet mentality and find their own food freedom. In her spare time, she enjoys CrossFit, telemark skiing, mountain biking, and camping out under the stars.