Easy Home Recipe: Chicken Alfredo Pasta
All-time favorite comfort food – pasta. Oh, the deliciousness of a sauce, with meat, or meatless, tons of veggies, chewy al dente noodles (fettuccine or any other variety), the options are endless. Yum! Who wouldn’t want that? But, here is the question to ponder upon: why do we love pasta so much? When you break it down, it seems obvious. It is easy to make, it is rather inexpensive, you can store it up to a couple of days, you can prepare it in bulk, serve it hot or at room temperature. So – there you have it. A perfect versatile food that feeds many, and takes about half an hour to prepare it.
Today, we bring you a staple creamy pasta – Chicken Alfredo.
Here is what you need:
- 8 ounces dried fettuccine pasta
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 pound total)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) European-style unsalted butter, divided
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese (2 1/2 ounces), plus more for serving
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- Coarsely chopped fresh parsley leaves, for serving
How to make it?
- Cook the pasta, drain, and reserve cooking water. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the fettuccine and cook until al dente, 8 to 10 minutes. Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water, then drain the pasta.
- Dry the chicken and season with salt and pepper. Meanwhile, pat both sides of the chicken breasts dry with paper towels. Season with 3/4 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper.
- Heat the oil over medium-high in a large frying pan. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat until shimmering, 2 to 3 minutes. If you have a pan that has straight sides, here’s the time to use it. Do not use a nonstick pan.
- Add the chicken to the hot pan, and cook for 5 to 7 minutes. Swirl the pan just before adding the chicken to distribute the oil. Add the chicken and leave it alone for 5 to 7 minutes, until the bottom is golden brown. If you try to turn the chicken and it feels stuck, it isn’t ready to flip.
- Flip the chicken and cook for another 5 to 7 minutes, until the chicken reaches 165°F. Flip the chicken over and add 1 tablespoon of the butter right between them. Pick up the pan and give it a gentle swirl to distribute the melting butter. Cook the chicken until it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F, 5 to 7 minutes more.
- Slice the chicken and cover to keep warm. Transfer the chicken to a plate or clean cutting board and let rest for 3 minutes. Cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Cover with aluminum foil while you prepare the rest of the dish.
- Melt the rest of the butter and sauté the garlic. Add the remaining 7 tablespoons butter to the same pan used for the chicken and place over medium heat until melted. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Make the Alfredo sauce. Whisk in the cream, Parmesan, nutmeg, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Simmer for 3 to 4 minutes. If the sauce is too thick, add some of the reserved pasta cooking water, a few tablespoons at a time, to thin it out.
- Add the drained pasta and toss to coat in the sauce. Add the drained fettuccine to the sauce and toss to coat. Divide the pasta among serving bowls and top with a few slices of chicken. Garnish with parsley, more Parmesan, and black pepper if desired.
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