Lemon-Garlic Sardine Fettuccine for Two

November/December 2010

Your rating: None Average: 4.2 (12 votes)

Even sardine skeptics will enjoy this lemony pasta with crispy breadcrumbs. Substitute a 5- to 6-ounce can chunk light tuna for the sardines if you prefer. If you are using tuna or can’t find sardines packed in tomato sauce, add 1 tablespoon tomato paste with the lemon juice in Step 4. Serve with a salad of bitter greens tossed with a lemon vinaigrette and a glass of pinot grigio.

"I made it according to the recipe. It was too dry and there were too many breadcrumbs. it also had to be reheated in the microwave because the sauce and the sardines were cold. It was an interesting touch though, to toast the bread...
Lemon-Garlic Sardine Fettuccine for Two

Makes: 2 servings, about 1 1/4 cups each

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  • 4 ounces whole-wheat fettuccine
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs (see Tip), preferably whole-wheat
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 3- to 4-ounce can boneless, skinless sardines, preferably in tomato sauce, flaked
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons finely shredded Parmesan cheese


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta until just tender, 8 to 10 minutes or according to package directions. Drain.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon oil in a small nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant and sizzling but not brown, about 20 seconds. Transfer the garlic and oil to a large bowl.
  3. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in the pan over medium heat. Add breadcrumbs and cook, stirring, until crispy and golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
  4. Whisk lemon juice, pepper and salt into the garlic oil. Add the pasta to the bowl along with sardines, parsley and Parmesan. Gently stir to combine. Serve sprinkled with the breadcrumbs.

Tips & Notes

  • Tip: To make fresh breadcrumbs, trim crusts from whole-wheat bread. Tear bread into pieces and process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. One slice of bread makes about 1/2 cup fresh crumbs.


Per serving: 475 calories; 21 g fat (4 g sat, 13 g mono); 60 mg cholesterol; 52 g carbohydrates; 1 g added sugars; 23 g protein; 9 g fiber; 716 mg sodium; 427 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (33% daily value), Calcium (28% dv), Iron (23% dv), Magnesium (22% dv), Vitamin A (17% dv), Zinc (16% dv), omega-3s.

Carbohydrate Servings: 3

Exchanges: 3 starch, 1 1/2 medium fat meat, 3 fat

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