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For most of us, eating healthier involves eating more veggies than we were accustomed to. Maybe a lot more. It’s natural to feel some resistance to the new flavors and textures of foods that weren’t a regular part of your diet before, but usually, they grow on you if you give them a chance.
One of the simplest, most effective ways I’ve found to incorporate more veggies like that into our diet is to simply toss them all together with proteins and seasonings we already like. This Barbecue Bacon Chicken Casserole is the perfect example.
Now, spaghetti squash is one of the few types of squash I actually like. But my husband? The texture weirds him out and he flat-out groans every time he sees I’ve bought one. Determined to turn that rejection into acceptance, however grudging, I set out to make a spaghetti squash recipe he wouldn’t mind eating by including some of his favorite flavors: bacon, barbecue sauce, and garlic. If you’d like to make your own barbecue sauce, here’s a great recipe from Mickey, but thanks to the companies offering AIP-friendly barbecue sauce these days, you can also use store-bought!
Barbecue Chicken Casserole
- 1 pound bacon, chopped
- 1 red onion, diced
- 2 pounds chicken breast, chopped
- 2 cups spinach
- 1 spaghetti squash, baked, seeded, and shredded
- 1½ cups AIP barbecue sauce
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- Sea salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and grease a large baking dish with coconut oil or lard.
- In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the bacon until just shy of crisp, about 7 minutes. Remove the bacon from the pan, leaving the fat.
- Cook the onion and chicken in the bacon fat until the chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes.
- Add the spinach and cook until wilted, stirring frequently, about 3 minutes.
- In a large bowl, combine the chicken mixture, spaghetti squash, barbecue sauce, garlic powder, salt, and half of the cooked bacon. Mix well.
- Transfer to the greased baking dish and sprinkle with the remaining bacon.
- Bake 30 minutes, then serve hot.