Lance Corporal Trimaan Dhillon is accused of killing Alice Ruggles, 24, who was found dead in a flat on Rawling Road, Gateshead, in October.
At Newcastle Crown Court Dhillon, 25, pleaded not guilty to a charge of murder.
He appeared at the hearing via videolink to HMP Durham.
Dhillon, of Glencorse Barracks in Penicuik, Scotland, will be tried by a jury next year.
Judge Paul Sloan set a provisional trial date for February 28 and remanded Dhillon in custody in the meantime.