Eat Smart

This or That? Pasta Edition

by Anneli Lambeth, blogger

(Courtesy of

Everyone loves pasta. Let’s face it. Italian food is always great to eat.  Manicotti, baked ziti, Fettuccine Alfredo—all yummy! But what is the nutritional content of these things? Unfortunately, Fettuccine Alfredo isn’t really the first thing we should be putting in our stomachs.  The sauce is loaded with cream and cheese, and white pasta is just empty carbs. Hate to say it, but a typical 10-ounce serving of Fettuccine Alfredo contains approximately 450 calories, 18 grams of fat and 56 grams of empty carbs ( according to

This is not to say though that we can’t find something almost exactly the same tasting as well as nutritious and delicious! Take this recipe, for example, it is my variation of the recipe from I tried this one out a few weeks ago, and it was delicious!


(image from

Creamy Garlic Pasta with Shrimp and Vegetables


6 ounces whole-wheat spaghetti or angel hair

12 ounces peeled and deveined raw shrimp (see Note), cut into 1-inch pieces

1 bunch broccoli, trimmed and thinly sliced

1 large red bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 cup fresh or frozen peas

3 cloves garlic, chopped

1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt

1 1/2 cups nonfat or low-fat plain yogurt

1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

8 oz of mushrooms

To make:

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add spaghetti and cook 2 minutes less than package directions. Add shrimp, broccoli, mushrooms, bell pepper and peas and cook until the pasta is tender and the shrimp are cooked, 2 to 4 minutes more. Drain well.

2. Mash garlic and salt in a large bowl until a paste forms. Whisk in yogurt, parsley, lemon juice, oil and pepper. Add the pasta mixture and toss to coat. Serve sprinkled with pine nuts (if using).

This makes 4 servings-one serving is 2 cups.

And just look at the nutrition label, compared to regular Fettuccine Alfredo!

(Approx. 385 calories; 6 g fat (1 g sat, 3 g mono); 168 mg cholesterol; 53 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 34 g protein; 10 g fiber)