Quick and easy 15-minute creamy lemon caper pasta recipe is the perfect healthy weeknight dinner. Made with simple ingredients like fresh lemon, garlic, black pepper, skim milk, Greek yogurt, and parmesan cheese.
Creamy lemon caper pasta sauce
This creamy lemon caper pasta recipe is insanely flavorful, easy to make, and healthy. You will be in and out of the kitchen in under 15 minutes!
This recipe is made with the simplest ingredients like fresh lemon, garlic, vegetable broth, skim milk, yogurt, and capers. It’s healthy, but I promise you cannot tell!
You can serve this pasta for a family dinner, date night, or for yourself and save leftovers for meal prep. The options are endless!
This pasta recipe is like a creamy, healthy lemon alfredo sauce. It’s made with better-for-you ingredients, far lower in calories than traditional alfredo cream sauces – but tastes like the real thing (I promise)!
Why you’ll love this low fat recipe
- This lemon caper pasta sauce is quick and easy to make in 15 minutes.
- Healthy and low-calorie lemon alfredo sauce made with Greek yogurt.
- It’s high in protein, low in fat, and nutritious.
- No flour is needed to thicken up this creamy pasta sauce.
- Made with skim milk, yogurt, parmesan cheese, vegetable broth, and fresh lemon.
- This recipe is meal prep friendly.
- Easily make this pasta recipe gluten free and keto.
Lemon caper pasta is so easy to make that any level cook can do it! This healthy dinner recipe is perfect all year long and is sure to be a crowd-pleaser. Here is a list of ingredients so you are prepared:
- Pasta: I used spaghetti, but you can use angel hair or your favorite shape. You can use regular pasta, high protein pasta, chickpea pasta, or brown rice pasta.
- Butter: For cooking and to give this delicious and creamy pasta sauce flavor. We only need 1 Tablespoon, but it adds a great taste.
- Garlic: Use freshly minced garlic for the best flavor.
- Arrowroot Powder: To thicken this healthy creamy sauce up without needing to add flour. This also makes the recipe 100% gluten free.
- Vegetable or Chicken Broth: For flavor and for the base of this lemon caper pasta sauce.
- Milk: I used skim milk, but you can also use 2% or whole milk. This adds flavor and creaminess to this healthy pasta sauce.
- Greek Yogurt: Instead of heavy whipping cream, we use greek yogurt. I used 0%, but feel free to use 2% or 5%.
- Parmesan Cheese: For flavor! Use freshly grated parmesan for the most authentic taste.
- Lemon: Use both the zest and juice of fresh lemons for a real tangy, fresh flavor. It is called lemon caper pasta, after all!
- Salt & Pepper: To your taste preference! I always recommend tasting the pasta before serving it and adjusting the seasonings to your liking.
- Capers: The star of the dish! You need 2 – 3 Tablespoons for a salty and delicious taste.
Kitchen tools required
You only need a few kitchen utensils to make this creamy lemon caper pasta. Here is a list:
- Large pot
- Deep saute pan
- Measuring Tools: 1/2 teaspoon, 1 teaspoon, 1 Tablespoon, 1/4 cup, 1/2 cup, and 1 cup.
How to make lemon caper pasta sauce
This delicious lemon caper pasta comes together in less than 15 minutes. It’s healthy, high protein, and super creamy. Everyone will love it! Here are step-by-step instructions:
First, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add pasta. Cook al-dente according to the package instructions, strain, then run under cold water to stop it from cooking further. I recommend cooking it al-dente! Set to the side.
Then, in a bowl or glass, whisk together the arrowroot powder and vegetable broth. Set to the side. Then, zest one lemon and set to the side.
Meanwhile, heat a large saucepan with the butter over medium heat. Add in the minced garlic, stir, and cook until fragrant. This should only take 30 seconds – 1 minute.
Then, add the arrowroot vegetable broth mixture and milk. Continuously whisk to combine, making sure there are no lumps. Raise heat to medium-high and let simmer for 2 – 4 minutes, or until the sauce thickens. Whisk every 20 seconds.
Next, reduce heat to medium-low, then whisk in the greek yogurt, parmesan cheese, lemon juice, and lemon zest, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Once fully combined, gently stir in the capers.
Finally, add the cooked spaghetti and use tongs to toss with the sauce. Top with fresh parsley, extra capers, and/or parmesan cheese, if desired. Enjoy your delicious lemon caper pasta!
I love this recipe as is, but if you need to make a few ingredient substitutions, no problem! Here are my recommendations:
- Spaghetti: Feel free to use rigatoni, bowtie, linguine, or your favorite shape of regular or brown rice gluten free pasta.
- Pasta: You can substitute the pasta with zucchini noodles if you are keto.
- Milk: You can use 2% or whole cow’s milk, or you can use unsweetened plain almond milk if needed.
- Butter: You can substitute with olive oil or avocado oil.
- Arrowroot Powder: Feel free to use tapioca starch or cornstarch.
Tips for making this recipe well
Cook the pasta al-dente. The pasta will continue to cook after we mix it with the lemon caper sauce. If you overcook it, the pasta can become mushy and soft.
Use fresh ingredients. This healthy cream sauce is very simple, so make sure to use freshly minced garlic and lemons for the best taste. Stay away from bottled lemon juice!
Mix the starch in cold or room temperature broth. Do not add the starch to the pan after the vegetable broth is warm because it will clump up. The starch helps thicken this lemon caper pasta sauce, and no one wants a lumpy creamy sauce.
Let the sauce simmer, not burn. Make sure to keep the stove temperature low as you simmer the healthy alfredo cream sauce. If not, it can burn, and the taste of burnt milk is gross!
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you taste the yogurt in the pasta sauce?
Traditional lemon caper pasta recipes use heavy cream, but we make it healthy with greek yogurt. Don’t worry, we only use 1/2 cup, so you cannot taste the yogurt!
Is it gluten free?
This recipe is easily gluten free if you use brown rice pasta or gluten-free pasta.
Is this recipe healthy?
This creamy lemon caper pasta recipe is certainly healthy. It is high in protein, made from simple, nutritious ingredients, it’s low in fat, and there is no flour or gluten in this recipe. Likewise, we use Greek yogurt instead of heavy cream or sour cream, skim milk instead of whole milk, and only 1 Tablespoon of butter (most recipes call for 1/2 cup).
How long does it keep?
This lemon caper pasta is best enjoyed right after its made, but it will keep well in the refrigerator for two or three days. You can reheat leftovers in the microwave or on the stovetop.
What do you serve it with?
You can easily serve this one on its own, but I like to add some fresh veggies, and a salad side to make it more balanced. Try it with:
- Broccolini Salad
- Greek Spinach Salad
- Strawberry Goat Cheese Salad
- Air Fryer Broccoli and Cauliflower
- Honey Sriracha Brussel Sprouts
How to store and reheat leftovers:
Storing: Store leftovers in airtight containers in the fridge for two or three days.
Reheating: Reheat in the microwave with a damp paper towel covering the container to help keep the moisture in or on the stovetop with 1 – 2 tablespoons of water.
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Did you make this recipe?
If you make this recipe, be sure to comment and rate it down below. Also, don’t forget to tag me @healthfulblondie on Instagram and use the hashtag #healthfulblondie so I can see your delicious creation and share it with my followers!
Lemon Caper Pasta
- 10 oz pasta, spaghetti or angel hair
- 1 Tbsp unsalted butter or extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 ½ tbsp arrowroot powder, tapioca starch or cornstarch
- 1 cup low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
- ½ cup milk, skim or 2%
- ½ cup plain Greek yogurt, 0% or 2%
- ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 3 – 4 tbsp fresh lemon juice, 1 – 2 lemons
- ½ tsp fresh lemon zest
- 1 tsp salt, to taste
- ½ tsp black pepper, to taste
- 2 – 3 tbsp capers, liquid drained
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add pasta. Cook al-dente according to the package instructions, strain, then run under cold water to stop it from cooking further. Set to the side.
- In a bowl or glass, whisk together the arrowroot powder and vegetable broth. Set to the side. Then, zest one lemon and set to the side.
- Meanwhile, heat a large saucepan with the butter over medium heat. Add in the minced garlic, stir, and cook until fragrant. This should only take 30 seconds – 1 minute.
- Add in the arrowroot vegetable broth mixture and milk. Continuously whisk to combine, making sure there are no lumps. Raise heat to medium-high and let simmer for 2 – 4 minutes, or until the sauce thickens. Whisk every 20 seconds.
- Reduce heat to medium-low, then whisk in the greek yogurt, parmesan cheese, lemon juice, and lemon zest, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Once fully combined, gently stir in the capers.
- Add cooked spaghetti and use tongs to toss with the sauce. Top with fresh parsley, extra capers, and/or parmesan cheese, if desired. Enjoy!
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