I have a friend who always takes it upon herself to mock my Olive Garden obsession. I’m not sure exactly what her gripe is, but I can assure you, my favorite Olive Garden meals are well worth the friendly ridicule. One thing they’re not always worth? The calories. Fortunately, this copycat Olive Garden Garlic Rosemary Chicken Recipe is a healthier version of one of my favorite orders.
Don’t Fill up on Bread
True story, Olive Garden is home to one of my finest hours. On my sixteenth birthday, my sister and I went home with boxes and boxes of extra breadsticks. How? We flirted with the waiter. To this day, those breadsticks are hands down the best thing flirting has ever gotten me.
These days, “endless breadsticks” still sound great in theory, but they’re just not a luxury I can afford, calorie-wise, anyway. Today, I try to be a little more cautious in my approach to that huge, carb and calorie dense menu.
Of course, no matter how careful you are eating out, it’s still almost always easier to stay healthy when you’re cooking your own food. And that’s exactly where copycat recipes like this one come into play.
Restaurant Quality, Guilt Free
This cleaned up copycat Olive Garden Garlic Rosemary Chicken Recipe is the perfect meal for a special night in. Chicken seasoned with rosemary and topped with a garlic, mushroom, and spinach sauce cooked in white wine, this recipe has an elegant touch that makes it perfect for a romantic dinner or special occasion. If you’re looking to dress up your dinner menu a little this week without going out, definitely try this simple recipe.
Unlike other Olive Garden favorites, like heavy pastas rich with cream and thick sauces, this chicken recipe is easy to keep light. Delicious rosemary and white wine give this chicken dinner all the flavor it needs. Meanwhile, the garlic, mushroom, and spinach sauce add a little extra something without tons of extra calories.
You can whip up this dinner in less than an hour. So while I recommend it for a special occasion, it’s also a good option for a weeknight meal.
There’s nothing wrong with treating yourself from time to time. I know I still enjoy a trip to Olive Garden every now and then. But if you’re trying to cut calories and save some cash, delicious copycat recipes like this one are ideal. And no, unfortunately it doesn’t come with endless breadsticks. But, as much as I hate to admit it, we’re probably all better off without them anyway, right? (Not that it will stop me from hitting on the waiter next time I go to Olive Garden anyway.)
Yields: 4 servings | Serving Size: 1 chicken breast with 1/4 cup sauce | Calories: 336 | Total Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 145mg | Sodium: 363mg | Carbohydrates: 4g | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Protein: 48g | SmartPoints (Freestyle): 3
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cup fresh mushrooms, sliced
- 4 (6 to 8 ounce) boneless and skinless chicken breast
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, minced
- 1/4 cup dry white wine, chardonnay works great!
- 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 3 cups baby spinach
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large skillet on medium heat. Once hot, add the mushrooms and garlic. Cook until the mushrooms are lightly browned (about 6 to 8 minutes) and remove from pan.
- In the same pan the mushrooms were cooked in, add the remaining olive oil. Once hot, add the chicken breast and season with salt, pepper, and rosemary. Cook, about 6 to 8 minutes, on each side. Each side should be golden brown and then chicken cooked through. Remove the chicken and set aside to keep warm.
- Return the mushrooms to the skillet. ON medium heat, add the wine and chicken broth. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes or until the broth as reduced. Add the spinach and cook until wilted.
- Place the chicken on serving plates and pour the spinach and mushroom sauce over top. Serve and enjoy!
More Copycat Recipes:
Cheddar biscuits are to Red Lobster what breadsticks are to Olive Garden. If you’re one of those people who goes out with every intention of filling up on bread, this skinnified copycat recipe is for you! This version uses low-fat cheeses, skim milk, Greek yogurt, and coconut, almond, and whole wheat flours, but there’s still plenty of warm and cheesy comfort food flavor.
Another one for the Olive Garden fans. This recipe is cleaned up and trimmed down with all the same delicious flavors as the restaurant version, but fewer calories. First, garlic, oregano, and sun-dried tomatoes give this meal a classic Italian taste. Then, lean chicken breast and spinach load it up with protein and nutrients.