Seriously, who doesn’t love alfredo? It’s one of my favorite comfort foods. I used to always order chicken alfredo at restaurants and have enough leftovers to last me at least three more meals.
As I got older, the more I ordered it the less I started to like it. Once I would reheat it, a layer of oil would separate from the cheese and it would turn into a gloppy greasy mess. With my taste also changing, it was never as good as I would remember. The alternative would be to use jarred alfredo at home, but how nutritious is that? Well, below we have a few labels for you to see for yourself.
The sodium levels alone are enough to alarm you. That means ¼ cup of sauce has at least three times as much sodium in our entire recipe below. The amount of saturated fat should also be of concern. One sauce has 25% of your recommended amount for the day. This is because cream and butter are used along with hydrogenated oils to keep these sauces shelf stable (to learn more about hydrogenated oils and fats, click here). Our nutrition facts for our recipe are located at the bottom of the page, which is for the entire recipe. To compare, our sauce itself per serving has 109 calories, 7 grams of fat, 3.5 grams of saturated fat, and 226 milligrams of sodium. Without relying on heavy cream and butter for flavor, the Italian herbs shine through in the recipe. Hopefully, this shows you the benefits in cooking at home versus relying on convenience food. Plus, this recipe is super easy, delicious, and nutritious!
Skinny Chicken & Broccoli Alfredo
8 oz whole wheat penne pasta
½ lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast
2 cups fresh broccoli
1 cup Italian blend cheese
½ cup evaporated milk
½ tsp. Garlic powder
½ tsp. Onion powder
½ tsp. paprika
1 tsp. Oregano
1 tsp. Basil
1 tsp. Black pepper
1 tsp. Thyme
1 tsp. Rosemary
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside when done.
- While pasta is cooking, slice chicken breasts into even, 1” thick slices
- Cook chicken in a large pan over medium heat. Season with a garlic powder, onion powder, paprika and a pinch of salt and pepper. Once chicken is thoroughly cooked, set aside.
- In a medium pot, bring 3 cups of water to a boil. Add fresh broccoli and boil for about 5 minutes until tender. Drain and set aside.
- Using a small saucepan, heat milk on medium for about 3 minutes. When the milk is heated and starts to steam, stir in cheese. Once melted, add basil, black pepper, thyme, oregano, and rosemary. Continue to stir on medium heat until sauce thickens, then take off heat and set aside.
- Combine pasta, chicken, broccoli and alfredo sauce in one large pot. Mix together and serve.
Severe with a fresh, side salad
NOURISHING NUTRITION (per serving)
Fat (g): 12
Sodium (mg): 226
Protein (g): 41
Carbs (g): 47
Fiber (g): 5