Saturday, March 23, 2013

Paleo Chicken Alfredo with Zucchini Noodles

I am a few days late on this post, mainly due to the fact that I have been a little occupied.  I am currently en route to the East Coast, but it has proven a bit difficult due to the massive snow storm that decided to hit on the 3rd day of spring.  Fun, right?  Well, the only benefit of a delayed flight is that I finally get the chance to blog about a delicious meal from the other night!  I found this recipe for Paleo Chicken Alfredo, and I was like, um.. how is that possible?  Chicken alfredo is delicious because it involves lots of cream and lots of cheese- how can a Paleo version be any good?  Well some genius out there discovered that crushed cashews, when spiced up, end up tasting a lot like alfredo sauce.  Who knew??  We tried out the recipe with a few changes, and boy was it delicious.  We don't even have leftovers because we ate it all...  I decided to use zucchini noodles again, rather than trying to find kelp noodles somewhere in this town, and they were great.  Plus, I had just recieved my Pampered Chef order which included the greatest tool EVER in the form of a vegetable peeler that juliennes the vegetable while it peels.  It is amazing- I got perfect spaghetti-like noodles in about 5 minutes.  Love it!  (Alternatively, you could use spaghetti squash here too).  So anyway, enough of my ranting and raving- here is what I did:

Paleo Chicken Alfredo with Zucchini Noodles
(could serve 3 if the 2 of you don't eat it all!)
  • 1 large zucchini or 2 medium ones
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 cup cashews
  • 1/2 t onion powder
  • 1/4 t garlic powder
  • 1/4 t mustard powder
  • 1/4 t sea salt
  • 1/4 t black pepper
  • 1/8 t paprika
  • 1-2 c chicken broth
  • 1/8 t nutmeg
First, prepare the zucchini noodles.  Julienne them so they look like strands of spaghetti, using a knife, peeler, or julienne tool like mine.  Once you get down to the seeds, you should stop since they won't produce good strands.  Toss the zucchini with some salt in a colander over a bowl and allow to sit for about 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, wring out the zucchini (it's weird, I know) to remove all the moisture.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the olive oil and the garlic clove and saute it for about 3-4 minutes.  Remove the garlic clove (you just need it for flavor).  Salt and pepper both sides of the chicken and add the breasts to the skillet.  Cook for about 6-7 minutes on each side, or until browned and cooked through.  While the chicken is cooking, add the cashews, onion powder, garlic powder, mustard powder, sea salt, pepper, and paprika to a food processor or blender.  Cover and blend into a powder.  Be careful not to OVER blend, or it will become a paste!  Once it is a nice fine powder, remove to a bowl and stir in about 1 c of chicken broth (or you can keep it in the blender and combine it there, either way).  This will turn it into a "cream" sauce.  It's okay if it looks too liquidy- it will thicken up when heated. 

Remove the chicken to a cutting board.  Turn back the heat to medium-low on the skillet.  Cut the cooked chicken into thick slices (or chunks if you want).  Add the sauce to the skillet and allow to cook for a minute or so.  If it thickens up too much at any point, add more broth. Toss in the chicken slices/chunks and stir, then add the zucchini noodles. Toss it all around until everything is coated.  Finally, add your dash of nutmeg (gives it a little bonus flavor).  Serve it all up onto a plate!

I feel like the preparation instructions look long and complicated, but really this took about 20-30 minutes to make, and it was pretty simple.  I don't know how, but it really DID taste like chicken alfredo!  The miracle of cashews, I suppose.  If you are a pasta-lover like me, I would definitely recommend you try this- you may be skeptical too, but it will surprise you!


  1. This looks delicious! Definitely giving it a try.

  2. I made just the zucchini noodle Alfredo as a side dish and it was delish! I couldn't believe there was no cream or cheese in it!