Pasta may just be my favorite type of food and we eat some sort of pasta dish usually about once a week. If I had to pick one pasta dish as my favorite, this would probably be it. It is creamy and spicy (those of you who know me know how much I like my spice!) and chock full of veggies that I like. I was introduced to a similar pasta dish several years ago when my kind and thoughtful friend threw me a special birthday party, at which she made me a delicious birthday dinner that included a pasta like this one.
The sauce for this dish begins with a creamy Alfredo sauce. The fresh Parmesan cheese that is added into the sauce makes it so flavorful and the mixture of cayenne and black pepper gives it the spice that I love. If you or someone in your family is averse to spicy foods then I recommend you halve the amount of pepper called for or leave it out altogether for a plain Alfredo. My family and I love the heat of the cayenne and black pepper, so we love it as it is written, but it is nice and spicy, so just be fore-warned!
Sautéed garlic, artichoke hearts, sun dried tomatoes and mushrooms are then added to the sauce, however the sauce is so versatile that the vegetables can easily be changed if you prefer different veggies than the ones I call for in this recipe (although I love it just as it is below best!). Also, you can feel free to sauté the vegetables ahead of time, which is a nice make-ahead aspect of this dish.
The noodles that I use are called Dreamfield’s brand pasta noodles because they are recommended on the THM plan to be helpful to not spiking blood sugar (I used Rotini shaped pasta in this blog post, but I really like this sauce with Angel Hair pasta as well), but if you would like to use other noodles then you can use zucchini noodles or spaghetti squash.
1 16 oz. Box of mushrooms
2 14.5 oz jars quartered artichoke hearts (drained)
1 8.5 oz. jar sliced sun dried tomatoes in oil (drained)
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 cup heavy cream
6 Tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon cayenne (reduce by half if you have people that are sensitive to spicy food)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup of freshly grated Parmesan
1/2 teaspoon salt
Saute the mushrooms in 2 Tablespoons of butter and 2 Tablespoons of olive oil on high until they are browned and nicely cooked. Add garlic and sauté for a few more minutes until cooked through. Add chopped artichoke hearts and sun dried tomatoes and stir until combined then set aside.
Make Alfredo sauce by melting the butter and heavy cream in a sauce pan on low heat. Add remaining sauce ingredients and cook on low, stirring for a few minutes until cheese is melted and sauce is smooth. Add the sautéed vegetable mixture, stir, remove from heat and set aside.
Boil 1 box of pasta to package directions. I use Dreamfield’s brand pasta noodles because they are recommended on the THM plan to be helpful to not spiking blood sugar (I used Rotini shaped pasta in this blog post, but I really like this sauce with Angel Hair pasta as well), but if you would like to use other noodles then you can use zucchini noodles or spaghetti squash.
Pour sauce and vegetable mixture over the pasta and serve. I like to sprinkle extra fresh Parmesan cheese over the top of each serving, but that is optional.
*NOTE: This makes a great vegetarian main dish, however if you are wanting to add protein to this (protein is recommended for THM at each meal or snack) then I recommend serving seasoned and marinated sliced grilled chicken on top or a chicken breast on the side. Serve with a green salad for a complete meal.