Chicken, broccoli, and fettuccine with a deliciously creamy and light alfredo sauce recipe (377 calories)! Everyone loves this classic comfort food makeover!
Did we all go through a phase with chicken, broccoli, ziti? Like, did you or did you not order chicken, broccoli, ziti in alfredo sauce at every restaurant for at least 5 good years there? I swear I was really on a bender from ‘95 to 2000, and then I don’t know what happened…buffalo chicken?
Whenever I see it on menus, I remember it like it was a decade. The stirrup era, the braces era, the Leonardo DiCaprio era that never ended. Sometimes I even think to order it, and I wonder if I’d be warping nostalgia somehow, or if I’d be upset when it didn’t come with that long, seasoned breadstick. But mostly, I just end up browsing the dessert menu and then ordering something lighter.
The loveliness of alfredo sauce is in butter and heavy cream and Parmesan. But if we want to cut down on the butter, we need to find a way to either lose the heavy cream (not happening) or cut out the roux (the butter and flour mixture that later thickens the cream into a silky sauce). Cooks Illustrated solved this problem with their lighter alfredo (of course they did). They nixed the roux by simply bringing cream and cornstarch to a simmer until thickened and then stirring in a solid amount of Parmesan cheese. It’s brilliant. Leaving out the butter and flour cuts down on calories significantly. We can choose to add some of those back in the form of high quality cheese, which is really where you’ll taste the calories, anyway–and that’s something I’m always mindful of: spending calories where I’ll taste them…where they’ll appear to matter.
Another quick way to lighten the sauce itself is by swapping half and half for the heavy cream. It still tastes rich by most standards, but with about half the calories.
For the overall meal, adding more broccoli to bulk up the volume of food you’re eating is always a key to making a richer meal more satisfying. And the last secret? Shirataki fettuccine noodles. I can’t praise these enough–especially here, where the sauce is rich and the additions aren’t necessarily calorie-free. If we’d used traditional fettuccine, we’d be tacking on an extra 200 calories per cup to each serving, but with the Shirataki fettuccine? 20 calories. It’s unbeatable.
Now that chicken broccoli alfredo has made a comeback, I’m kinda thinking it’s never leaving…And it just may be even better than the ones we remember having years ago. You know what–I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have said that. Because again I’m messing with the memory of yesteryear. It doesn’t come with a breadstick. But it’s damn delicious, and a lot better for us.