Sep 12, 2021 2 min read

This quick weeknight dinner is packed with flavors and textures. It takes almost no preparation; all you need to do is juice half a lemon and get some zest. It is so creamy and hearty that you may have trouble believing that it is low in carbs.

The recipe starts with Carba-Nada Reduced Carb Pasta Roasted Garlic Fettuccine. It has 15 grams of protein and only 17 grams of net carbs - about half the amount in regular pasta. Plus it is already seasoned with a soft garlic flavor so you do not need to add your own (though you can if you like - just add it to the pan with the chicken).

The recipe calls for chicken and spinach, but you can shake it up a bit. Shrimp and salmon are great choices for an alternative protein. If you do not have spinach, you can use kale or arugula. If you want to use another vegetable, cook it with the chicken and leave it in the pan when you make the ricotta sauce. You can use any kind of nuts instead of pine nuts for a good crunch.

The recipe stands alone as a one-dish meal since it has protein, vegetables, and healthy fats. You can also serve it with a side salad or some steamed vegetables for a larger meal that is still low in carbs.

Recipe for Low-Carb Lemony Parmesan Pasta with Chicken, Pine Nuts, and Spinach

Makes 4 servings

Prep time: 5 minutes 

Cook time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of Carba-Nada Reduced Carb Roasted Garlic Fettuccine 
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 16 ounces of skinless chicken breast
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • ½ teaspoon of pepper
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 2 teaspoons of lemon zest
  • 1 ½ cup of part skim ricotta
  • ½ cup of toasted pine nuts, walnuts, or other nuts
  • 2 ounces (½ cup) of shredded or grated parmesan
  • 1 5-ounce bag of fresh spinach leaves
  • Optional garnishes and toppings: halved cherry tomatoes, chopped fresh spinach leaves, parmesan cheese, pine nuts

Instructions:

  1. Cook the Carba-Nada Reduced Carb Roasted Garlic Fettuccine according to the directions on the package. It takes only three minutes to cook. Drain the pasta and reserve 1 cup of pasta water. Set the pasta water and pasta aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a skillet.
  3. Add the chicken and sprinkle it with salt and pepper. and cook for 3 to 5 minutes on each side or until no longer pink. Remove the chicken from the skillet. Set it aside.
  4. Add the butter to the skillet and heat it. Add ½ cup of reserved pasta water, lemon juice, lemon zest, ricotta cheese, and parmesan cheese. Mix and heat. 
  5. Add the pasta. Toss and heat. You may need to add more pasta water to reach the consistency you want. Finally, stir in the spinach so it wilts.
  6. Plate the pasta.
  7. Slice the chicken into strips and put it over the pasta.
  8. Add any additional toppings such as parmesan, tomatoes, spinach, and pine nuts.
  9. Serve and enjoy!
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