lemon basil squash and kale ribbons with chicken

i have been waiting for the free summer squashes to start rolling in. for those of you in a zone 5 growing area, you know what i mean. once the first of july hits, so begins 2 full months of people pushing squash on you. no problem by me, i don’t have any in my garden, so send it my way. i could eat it 4 times a week and not get sick of it.

normally we keep our squash super light by simply salting and then grilling small slices. but we wanted something a little more decadent this time around, and also i’m missing pasta a little right now, so decided on a cream sauce made with garlic from the yard and basil and kale from the garden. the thin squash and kale ribbons were a breeze to prepare, looked beautiful, and soaked up the sauce surprisingly well.

this was a refreshing summer meal, and will for sure be a repeat in our house this season.

this entire recipe serves 4.

lemon chicken breasts

4 chicken breasts

juice of 2 lemons, reserve rind for zesting

3 tbsp salt

method for chicken: marinate chicken in lemon and salt for 4 hours. grill until skin browns or chars. remove from heat and zest lemon over breasts, then let rest for 10 minutes.

bright and tender ribbons

squash and kale ribbons

1 long summer squash

several leaves of kale

1/4 cup heavy cream


for the squash, simply use a vegetable peeler to make ribbons out of a long squash. avoid the spongy flesh and seeds in the middle.

for the kale, use a pizza cutter to remove the thick rib from the center of all the leaves. use the same slicer to cut noodle shaped ribbons. set into a large pot.

wait until the chicken is almost done before cooking.

pour cream over ribbons. turn heat on low and cook slowly with lid on until veggies are completely tender. stir often so the sauce or ribbons don’t burn. sprinkle salt in, stir, and allow steam out with heat off.

stir in the salty good stuff

creamy lemon basil sauce:

1/4 cup heavy cream

1/4 cup parmesan cheese, plus more for serving

3 tbsp olive oil

3 smashed cloves smashed garlic

1/4 cup fresh basil


lemon for zesting

few tbsp pesto to serve

method: combine cream and garlic in sauce pan over medium heat. once it comes to a brief simmer, turn heat to low and whisk in oil, cheese, and salt. stir briskly until cheese is melted. stir half the sauce into finished ribbons and serve over chicken. finish with more sauce, shredded basil, lemon zest, and a little pesto.

enjoy with a ton of white wine.

or red.

or gin.



8 thoughts on “lemon basil squash and kale ribbons with chicken

  1. I’m confused – did you cook the veggies in cream, or the cream sauce? Can you clarify that step? I am excited to try this – I’ll have my first zucchini soon!

    • ann-
      i cooked the kale and squash in just the cream. the cream sauce is for stirring in after all is cooked!

  2. Mmmm…I actually have ALL of these ingredients right now! So, this is what’s for dinner tonight. Thanks for giving me a great idea for squash and kale (never thought to put the two together). I cannot WAIT to try that cream sauce.

  3. Hi Liz,
    I’m starting a cookbook club and thought you might be interested. (Basically, it’s a potluck where we all make recipes from the same cookbook. And we’re flexible about dietary restrictions.) I can’t seem to find your email address, so sorry for posting here. If you’re interested, would you mind emailing me back at sarahelenz@gmail.com.

    Sarah Lenz

  4. Pingback: Paleo Menu: Side Dishes for the week —

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