Lightened Up Spaghetti Carbonara

October 23, 2014 by  
Filed under Recipes

Ingredients:

  1. 1 tsp. olive oil
  2. ½ lb. thin asparagus, trimmed and cut into 3-inch pieces (~2 cups)
  3. 2 large shallots, sliced
  4. 1/8 tsp. sea salt
  5. ¼ tsp. fresh ground black pepper, divided, plus additional to taste
  6. 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  7. 180g skinless, boneless chicken breast, chopped to 0.5” pieces (1 very large chicken breast or 2 small)
  8. 2 large eggs
  9. ½ cup finely grated Parmesan Cheese, divided
  10.  8 oz. (226g) dry whole-wheat Spaghetti

Methods:

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet on medium-high, heat the oil. Add asparagus, shallots, salt and 1/8th tsp. of pepper and sauté for about 4 minutes, stirring frequently, until lightly browned.
  3. Add 1/3 cup water and cook for 3-4 minutes more, until asparagus is crisp-tender and liquid evaporates.
  4. Reducing heat to low, add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until garlic has softened, about 30 seconds.
  5. Transfer veggie contents to a medium bowl and set aside.
  6. Spray skillet with a little oil, increase heat to medium, and add chicken breast. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until lightly browned and cooked through.
  7. Add the chicken to the veggie mixture and set aside.
  8. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs. Stir in ¼ cup cheese and 1/8tsp. pepper; set aside.
  9. To the boiling water, add the pasta and cook until al dente according to package directions.
  10.  Drain & return pasta to the pot, off of the heat. Immediately, add egg mixture to the hot pasta and stir vigorously until thickened and creamy- about 1 minute.
  11.  Add the asparagus and chicken mixture to the pasta and stir to combine.
  12.  Season with additional pepper and divide among serving plates. Divide the remaining ¼ cup parmesan cheese amongst each serving.
  13.  Makes 4 servings. Each serving is ~ 1 ½ cups.

Discussion:

  1. One serving of this delicious pasta satisfies the starch and protein portion of the plate model. For a 400 calorie meal, add 2 cups steamed veggies on the side.
  2. It is advised to reserve a little bit of the starchy pasta water, just in case you want to loosen the sauce up at step 10. The starch in the water helps the sauce ‘cling’ to the pasta, and adds body to the sauce.
  3. For variety, swap out the chicken breast for a similar amount of other lean proteins like low-fat chicken/turkey sausage, prawns, or lean ham. Using 180g prawns (~24 medium-large prawns) would trim calories to 360 per serving, and protein content would stay the same.

Check out our blog article here for more thoughts on this awesome meal! 

Nutrient Content Per serving:

 

Nutrition Facts

Spaghetti Carbonara Lightened Up

4 Servings

Amount Per Serving

Calories 376.0
Total Fat 8.6 g
Saturated Fat 3.7 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1.0 g
Monounsaturated Fat 3.1 g
Cholesterol 129.2 mg
Sodium 292.4 mg
Potassium 338.0 mg
Total Carbohydrate 5.2 g
Dietary Fiber 7.0 g
Sugars 0.1 g
Protein 28.4 g