Chun Qi Jiang, 40, wore a dark orange T-shirt and brown slacks and fidgeted in the prisoner's box. He was remanded into custody and is scheduled to return to court on Oct. 16.
Jiang was arrested Aug. 26 and charged with second-degree murder in the death of Guang Hua Liu.
Police say the pair had a four-year relationship and have deemed Liu's death a domestic-related homicide.
Parts of the 41-year-old woman's body — including her head — were found in mid-August scattered west of Toronto and near her home in the city.
Police recently confirmed a torso found in a suitcase floating in Lake Ontario is also hers.
Liu was reported missing on Aug. 11, one day after her friends dropped her off in front of a now-defunct spa she owned called the Forget Me Not Health Centre in east Toronto.
On Aug. 15, her right foot was found in the Credit River in Mississauga, Ont., about 45 kilometres west of her home.
Liu's head and hands were later discovered in the same river in the Hewick Meadows Park area.
Days later, two calves, a thigh and an arm were found in West Highland Creek, just blocks from where she lived.
Forensic tests determined all the remains belonged to Liu, but police still do not know exactly how or where she died.