Friday, February 21, 2014

Skinny Fettuccine Alfredo

Hi All! It is mid-February and about time for me to get back on a semi-decent healthy eating plan, or rather, one that allows for a little bit of baking! I am getting a bit of a late start for 2014 because I decided that this year I would not be on a diet for my anniversary, birthday, and Valentine’s Day. I mean, all I wanted for my birthday was a cake (which I did get) rather than the one measly cupcake that I have requested in past years. But now, time to be better (there is a price to pay for that birthday cake, after all). That is why today I am bringing you one of my favorite lightened up recipes—Fettuccine Alfredo.

As an Italian, I love pasta, smothered in sauce, sprinkled with cheese. And the only time I seem to like fettuccine alfredo is when it is made at home. For some reason in restaurants it always seems to come out as a goopy, heavy mess. I have made it plenty of times with the butter and cream, and believe me, it is great. However, I just can’t eat that all the time. This is a recipe I don’t feel horrible about eating on a regular basis. To make it even better, the Hubs likes it too!

This recipe is lightened up by using Greek yogurt. I know it may seem weird, but it really does give the sauce a great taste and creaminess. My advice, if you are getting too much of a yogurt flavor, add a little more parmesan cheese. At that magical point, all the flavors gel together resulting in a great fettuccine alfredo! I hope you enjoy this lightened up recipe!

Skinny Fettuccine Alfredo
Servings: 4
Recipe adapted slightly from Now Eat This by Rocco Dispirito

1 lb Boneless, skinless chicken breast
10 ounces whole wheat fettuccine (or whatever pasta you have on hand—I happened to have linguini when I made this)
1 Tbs Butter
3 Garlic cloves, crushed
2 tsp cornstarch
Pinch of nutmeg (I grate it fresh, but you can also use ground nutmeg)
¾ cup low-fat, low-sodium chicken broth
¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
7 oz 2% Greek yogurt (I used Fage, this is one small package)
Salt and Pepper

  1. Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Grill until chicken is cooked (internal temperature 165 degrees F). Cut into strips and set aside. If you want your chicken to cook more quickly, cut chicken breasts into strips prior to grilling.
  2. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add salt and the pasta, and cook according to the package directions. Drain, reserving about a half cup of pasta water for sauce.
  3. While the pasta is cooking, whisk the cornstarch, nutmeg and chicken broth together in a small bowl. Set aside.
  4. Melt the butter in a large sauté pan. Using a garlic press, crush the garlic into the pan and cook until garlic is browned (about 2 minutes).
  5. Add the chicken broth mixture to the pan and bring to a simmer. Add the cheese and stir until combined.
  6. Turn the heat off and then add the yogurt to the pan, stirring to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste (and if the yogurt taste is too strong, add a little more parmesan cheese). If the sauce seems too thick, add additional chicken broth, a Tablespoon at a time, until your sauce reaches your desired consistency.
  7. Add the pasta to the sauce and toss to combine. Add 1-2 Tbs of pasta water to help the sauce adhere to the pasta (I used tongs to transfer my pasta directly to the sauce without draining first).
  8. Serve topped with grilled chicken and sprinkled with parmesan cheese, if desired.

Did you save some for me?

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