Blue Cheese and Vegetable Alfredo

My apologies for being a little MIA

I took MLK day off and then…

Have you read Gone Girl? If so, you’ll understand why I didn’t post yesterday.

If you haven’t, then I highly suggest you purchase a copy stat and get to reading

That is unless you have any responsibilities for the next 24 hours. Otherwise, you can throw those out the window because they won’t be completed. Not until you finish the book at least

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I tried to multi-task and do some things while reading at the same time.

Why do I do that? It never works out. I end up reading the same line 6 times and/or wash the load of clothes that I just took out of the dryer.

Let’s just say I’ve never been accused of being a good multi-tasker

Needless to say, the book is addicting. Really good.

Maybe I’m a bit unobservant {or that I’m attempting to read and simultaneously wash clothes} but I just totally could not predict what was going to happen next!

And as the hours passed without posting this fantastic {if I don’t say so myself} recipe, I felt guilty.

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I felt guilty because you shouldn’t be deprived of this creamy, cheesy, amazing, vegetable packed heaven.

Healthy Alfredo – it’s not an oxymoron.

This is creamy and perfect. I’ve never been a pasta girl, but this could change my mind for sure.

In typical fashion I added extra veggies. And I’d probably add even more next time because I really wanted more mushrooms.

{There will definitely be a next time, and it’ll probably be when I run out of leftovers of this batch}

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If you don’t love blue cheese, just substitute an equal amount of Parmesan. That’s how I usually make my Alfredo sauce until I found the idea to add blue cheese.

You could also use less cheese to lower the fat & calories, but I think this amount is perfect – cheesy without being ridiculously unhealthy. I mean, it is an entire meal – you get your whole grains, protein {from the cheese & milk}, and veggies all in one delectable bowl.

Like Gone Girl, this stuff is addicting. I may or may not have licked the bowl when I was finished. Hint: I did.

Blue Cheese and Vegetable Alfredo

by Meme Inge

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20-30 minutes

Keywords: saute entree healthier egg-free no-sugar-added nut-free soy-free vegetarian veggie-ful whole wheat cheese pasta
Print this recipe

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 6 oz. whole wheat pasta, about 2-1/4 cup dry {I used penne}
  • 1 TBSP butter
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 4 oz. mushroom, sliced
  • 1 TBSP flour
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-1/4 cup 1% milk {I wouldn’t use skim}
  • 1/4 cup (2 oz.) reduced-fat cream cheese
  • 1 (14 oz.) can quartered artichoke hearts, drained & rinsed
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 oz. (3/4 cup) Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 3 oz. (3/4 cup) blue cheese, crumbled
  • 1 TBSP lemon juice, optional
  • 2 TBSP chopped fresh parsley, optional

Instructions

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Once water is boiling, add pasta and cook until al dente, about 7-10 minutes depending on type of pasta. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup pasta’s cooking water, and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan or skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add onions and mushrooms and sauté until veggies are tender, about 7 minutes. Add in flour and garlic, and stir constantly for about 1 minute.

Slowly whisk in milk. {Make sure the flour is completely incorporated. It’s a little tricky with those veggies already in the pan}

Stirring constantly, bring the milk mixture to a boil. Slowly boil {while stirring} for about 2 minutes or until the mixture thickens. Stir in cream cheese until it is incorporated.

Reduce heat to medium, and stir in salt & artichokes. Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring often.

Remove from heat and stir in Parmesan and blue cheese. Stir in lemon juice.

Add the cooked & drained pasta to the cheese-vegetable mixture. Stir together gently until all the pasta is coated. If needed, add a few tablespoons of reserved pasta cooking water to thin sauce.

Sprinkle with parsley and serve with lemon wedges if desired.

Nutrition Facts per 1/4 recipe:

433 calories, 18.2g fat (10.4g saturated), 45.9g carbohydrates, 7.8g fiber, 23.1g protein

Nutrition Facts per 1/6 recipe:

325 calories, 13.6g fat (7.8g saturated), 34.4g carbohydrates, 5.9g fiber, 17.3g protein

Notes: this is for an entire meal. Each serving has at least 1 serving of veggies, and it’s a generous portion so you’ll definitely be satisfied. However, if the nutrition facts deter you from making this delectable dish, you can reduce the Parmesan to 1/2 cup and the blue cheese to 1/2 cup.

Nutrition Facts per 1/4 recipe using less cheese:

376 calories, 13.7g fat (7.7g saturated), 45.4g carbohydrates, 7.8g fiber, 19.1g protein

Based on this recipe from Cooking Light and a recipe from Weight Watchers 5 Ingredients 15 Minutes Cookbook

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Meme

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