Gluten-Free Takes on the Heat Wave

Right now, we’re having a nasty heat wave where I live. It’s so hot up here that turning on the stove makes me sweat and the power company smile. So I needed to come up with a dish that could partly prepared early in the morning before the heat begins and yet still ready to serve at the end of the day.

Here’s what I came up with.

Fusilli and Chicken on Spinach Leaves

serves four people

Half box Fusilli (Wheat and Gluten-Free)
Fresh or leftover Grilled Chicken
One marinated artichoke heart
Two Tomatoes
Half bag of Spinach Salad
Finely Chopped Baby Carrots
Green and/or Black Olives (Optional)
2 Tsps of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Feta Cheese
Salad Dressings to Taste


In the morning, prepare a half-box of Fusilli according to the directions on the box. While the Fusilli is cooking, grill skinless, boneless chicken breasts or tenders. (I used tenders in this recipe, but that was because it’s what I had on hand.)

Once chicken is cool, place in airtight container and refrigerate.

After the Fusilli reaches desired tenderness, rinse with cool water then rinse with olive oil. Put in an airtight container and refrigerate.

When you’re ready to make dinner, wash spinach leaves and tomatoes. Set spinach aside and dice tomatoes, carrots, and artichoke heart. Mix diced veggies with spinach leaves.

Remove pasta and chicken containers from refrigerator. Mix pasta with salad and place in a casserole dish. You can add the chicken cold or reheat it. I’d recommend serving it cold because you can save the leftovers for another day.

Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces and layer on top of pasta salad mixture. Sprinkle with Feta cheese. (As you can see from the picture, sprinkle means something different to the six-year-old who wants to be a chef.) 🙂

To preserve freshness, allow everyone to add their own dressing after dishing onto their plates. Plus, then everyone gets to pick his or her own favorite dressing.



17 thoughts on “Gluten-Free Takes on the Heat Wave

    • Hi Eliza,

      Try the Shar brand. They’re “Dedicated Gluten-Free” and do a good job of creating products that aren’t just gluten-free but tasty too.

      Even my husband and kids liked the Shar brand Fusilli. There’s a testimony right there. 🙂

      • I found the Shar products at Wegmans and Giant. The “a” in Shar has the little .. over it.

        If your grocery has a Gluten-Free aisle check there. The other place to check is the organic aisle.

        Good luck!

    • My husband and I love olives but not everyone does. Also, I added extra artichoke hearts to this recipe but I know not everyone likes them as much as I do. 🙂

  1. Sounds like a fast and easy recipe.
    I would have to leave out the artichoke heart, hubby hates them.
    He can act like a 5 year old at times. He’ll make all these gagging, choking noises….easier to leave out some ingredients.
    Any other you can recommend for the heart?
    Also, I’m curious like Eliza, what brand fusilli do you use?

    • Sorry about the gagging noises. Try substituting chick peas, wax beans and/or red beans for the artichoke hearts. For a little spice add pepperoncinis. 🙂

      • Thanks for the ideas, we love pepperoncinis!!
        Wax beans and red beans are also good ones.
        Plan on making this recipe this weekend. 🙂

      • Just to let you know, I made the Fusilli and Chicken this Sunday.
        It was a hit, even our friends dipped into it! LOL!!
        Switched to the pepperoncinis and used green olives. Yummy!
        Thank you!!

  2. This looks and sounds wonderful! I’ll have to octuply this recipe to feed my crew, and since everyone in the house loves artichoke hearts I can go hog-wild with them. 🙂 Thanks for sharing, Jess!

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