Skip to Content

Chicken Mole Amarillo with Chayote

Chicken Mole Amarillo with Chayote

Mexican mole sauces are simple enough to modify to low carb, but sometimes the vegetables typical of mole dishes include potatoes or higher carb vegetables. This chicken mole amarillo (aka yellow mole) includes chayote and asparagus for vegetables, allowing the bright flavor of the mole sauce to really shine through.

Jump to:
What is Chayote?
Cooking with Chayote
More Recipes with Chayote

Chicken mole amarillo with chayote squash in a bowl
Chicken mole with chayote squash in a bowl

This post may contain affiliate links, and you can read our disclosure information here– 

Using a Molcajete

What is Chayote?

Chayote (chai-OH-tay) is a pear-shaped, light green vegetable belonging to the gourd family. It has a crunchy texture and a mild, sweet flavor, similar to a summer squash. 

Some people think it tastes like a cross between a cucumber and an apple. In fact, a lot of recipes use chayote as a substitute for apples in low carb apple strudel or pies.

The substitution of chayote for potatoes lends a slight crunch to the stew, which enhances the texture and overall flavor.

Chayote originated from Central America and is commonly found in Latin American grocery stores, it may be difficult to find in your neighborhood grocery store. I have found it year-round at Walmart. 

The photo below is what ”fresh” chayote looks like.

A pile of fresh chayote squash
Fresh chayote squash

Is Chayote Healthy?

Chayote is rich in fiber, antioxidants, iron, manganese, phosphorus, zinc, potassium, copper and vitamins B1, B2, B6 and C.  It is a good food for easing acid reflux, and it is said to lower blood pressure.

Is Chayote Low Carb or Keto?

Although chayote isn’t necessarily as low carb as some other vegetables (like greens or broccoli), it’s definitely lower carb than potatoes and some other high-starch vegetables. Chayote is allowed on a low carb (or keto) diet.

One whole chayote squash has 6 grams of carbs. However, it also has 2.2 grams of fiber, giving it a grand total of 3.8 net carbs!

Is Chayote Easy to Grow?

Chayote is common in Central and South America and grows the best in tropical or sub-tropical environments. However, they are easy to grow compared to other perennial vegetables if you have a long growing season.

You can grow chayote in containers, however, the yield will not be as great as growing them in the ground. Sow the seeds 10 feet apart if growing in the ground.

They grow well with other squash, corn or peppers and can be complementary in cooking. Chayote are climbing plants, so you will want to trellis them or plant them near something they can climb on, like a fence.

If you’d like more tips on how to grow chayote, here is a post with videos and other helpful hints.

How to Peel and Cut Chayote

Though chayote can be consumed raw and with the peel on, removing the peel and cooking the chayote helps to make it softer and more palatable.

To prepare chayote for the chicken mole recipe below, you need to peel off the skin, usually with a common vegetable peeler.  It can then be cut into different sized pieces, depending on what you are making. 

Most often you can cut the fruit down the middle and then cut the halves into quarters.  This makes it easy to remove the large seeds by scraping it out with a knife or spoon.

Recipes Using Chayote

Chayote is very versatile. Similarly to other squashes, you can broil, bake, fry or eat chayote raw. You can toss it in salads or puree it in soups. Here are a few of our favorite dishes using chayote:

  • Baked chayote “apple” crisp
  • Pickled chayote
  • Chayote and carrot coleslaw
  • Roasted chayote with sheet pan or traybake dinners
  • Chayote, tomato and cucumber salad

Chayote also pairs well with ground pork or beef, shrimp, or eggs. It would be a great ingredient in spring rolls or cabbage rolls with any of these ingredients!

More Recipes with Mole Sauces

Easy Chicken Mole Rojo for the Home Cook

Low Carb Yellow Chicken Mole

Recipe for Chicken Mole Amarillo with Chayote

Chicken Mole Amarillo with Chayote

Chicken mole amarillo with chayote squash in a bowl
This mole sauce substitutes chayote and asparagus for the potatoes to modify it to a low carb dish. Easy, bright and medium spicy, mole amarillo is one of the 7 popular moles from Oaxaca
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 299


  • 3 dried guajillo chile peppers
  • 1-2 dried ancho chile peppers
  • 10 whole black peppercorns
  • 4 whole cloves
  • ¼ tsp cumin seeds
  • 4 tomatillos unpeeled
  • 1 firm Roma tomatoes
  • 1 onion unpeeled and cut into quarters
  • 3 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp cold water
  • 2 tsp masa harina or white corn meal
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 6 large chicken thighs skinless and boneless
  • 1 medium chayote peeled and sliced into large chunks
  • 1 bunch fresh asparagus
  • cilantro to taste, optional


  • Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat (no oil).  You're going to roast (or toast) the first 7 ingredients in this skillet.
  • First add all the chile peppers and roast 2-3 minutes, turning once. Remove from skillet and place on cutting board.  Cut peppers in half lengthwise and remove seeds.  Place in a bowl and pour enough boiling water over the peppers to cover.  Let them soak for about 10 minutes.
    3 dried guajillo chile peppers, 1-2 dried ancho chile peppers
  • While peppers are soaking, toast the peppercorns, cloves and cumin seeds for 1-2 minutes or until just fragrant.  Remove from skillet and grind up in a spice grinder until finely ground.
    10 whole black peppercorns, 4 whole cloves, 1/4 tsp cumin seeds
  • Roast the tomatillos, tomato and onion about 7 minutes or until charred, turning occasionally.  Add the garlic for the last minute or so.  Remove everything from heat until cool and then peel them.  *note: you can put the tomatillos and tomato in a paper bag and close it up for a bit to make them easier to peel.
    4 tomatillos, 1 firm Roma tomatoes, 1 onion, 3 tsp granulated garlic
  • Drain the chile peppers and add the peppers, peeled tomatillos, tomato and onion to a food processor and process until smooth.  Add the toasted spices and process until combined.
  • In a medium saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high and add the processed pepper mixture and salt and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer about 10 minutes.
    1 tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp salt
  • In a small bowl whisk together the water and corn meal and add to the simmering pepper mixture.  Cook briefly until it reaches a low boil.
    2 tbsp cold water, 2 tsp masa harina
  • In a 6-quart Dutch oven, bring the 4 cups chicken broth to a boil.  Add the chicken thighs and reduce the heat.  Cover the pot and simmer about 15 minutes.  Then add the chayote and asparagus.  Simmer, covered 10-15 more minutes until chayote is tender.
    4 cups chicken broth, 6 large chicken thighs, 1 medium chayote, 1 bunch fresh asparagus
  • To serve: Transfer the chicken thighs and vegetables to a plate with a slotted spoon (unless you want more of a soup) and spoon the mole over the chicken and vegetables.  Garnish with cilantro if desired.


Calories: 299kcalCarbohydrates: 10gProtein: 22gFat: 19gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 111mgSodium: 1098mgPotassium: 570mgFiber: 3gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 688IUVitamin C: 10mgCalcium: 48mgIron: 3mg
Did you make this recipe?If you tried this recipe, please give it a 5-star rating! To do this, just click on the stars above.

Online Diet/Health Coaching:

Although I am not currently taking clients for diet & health coaching, I have been a coach for many years with the online service called It is a great platform for all kinds of coaching – anything from specific diets, writing a blog, getting up early, or getting rid of that pesky procrastination.  

There are some wonderful coaches and the testimonials will tell you what you need to know.  Contact me at [email protected] to get a referral to some of the tested, experienced online coaches on

If you’d like to start with a plan for a low carb or keto lifestyle, check out this detailed guide in ebook form. It may be all you need to lose weight on this lifestyle. Or it may be used as a supplement to one-to-one coaching.

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.