3 Healthy Pasta Recipes You Will Love

Sasha de Beausset
3 Healthy Pasta Recipes You Will Love

Pasta has a bad reputation. Ever since the fitness and health world got into the no-carb, paleo frenzy, pasta has been on the blacklist.

As with all foods, there is no such thing as “good” or “bad” foods. There are just foods, and it is up to us to make wise choices as to how to prepare them, how often to eat them, and what to pair them with.

Pasta in itself is a great source of whole grains and micronutrients, and, if we choose fresh pasta made with egg, of protein too. But the greatest benefits come from the ingredients you mix in; not only do these add flavor, but they’re where the lean protein, vitamins, and minerals come from.

Below are three pasta recipes that will make you fall in love with pasta and with how it makes you feel. Note that while most recipes just say “pasta”, you can choose to use whole wheat, spinach, or quinoa pasta for an extra health boost.

Pasta with Sautéed Vegetables and Panela Cheese (Serves 4)

This recipe is packed with vitamin C and vitamin A, as well as heart-healthy and belly-fat-busting monounsaturated fats.

Ingredients

- 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

- 3 small bell peppers, sliced length-wise

- 1 small tomato, chopped

- 1 small onion, thinly sliced

- 2 medium zucchinis, sliced

- 2 baby squashes, sliced

- 12 oz fettuccine

- 1 clove garlic, minced

- 4 oz grilled panela cheese, thinly sliced, or fresh mozzarella cheese, grated

- 1/4 cup fresh basil

- Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

1. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a skillet. Add bell peppers, onion, and garlic. Sauté on low heat until slightly tender.

2. Meanwhile, boil 4 cups water in a pot with a dash of salt. Add pasta when boiling and cook according to package directions.

3. Once the bell peppers and onions are soft, add the rest of the vegetables and the basil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir until tender.

4. Add the pasta and cheese, and drizzle olive oil on top.

5. Sauté until mixed well and heated through.

Zucchini and Carrot Noodles With Ground Turkey Tomato Sauce (Serves 4)

Okay, so this is cheating a little bit because it’s not really pasta. But for those of you who don’t feel like a carb-heavy meal, this is a great alternative. It delivers B vitamins, folate, and iron, among other nutrients.

Ingredients

- 1/2 lb ground turkey

- 1 tbsp chopped onion

- 1 tsp cumin

- 1/3 cup chopped parsley

- 2 garlic cloves, chopped, divided

- Kosher salt

- Freshly ground black pepper

- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

- 1 jar low-sodium marinara sauce

- 2 medium zucchinis, cut into noodles with a spiralizer or julienne peeler

- 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into noodles with a spiralizer or julienne peeler

Directions

1. Heat a non-stick pan on medium. You can spray the pan with non-stick spray if desired.

2. Add ground turkey and stir so juices are released, then add onions, cumin, parsley, and garlic.

3. Once browned, add low-sodium marinara sauce, and season with salt and pepper.

4. Let simmer for 8–10 minutes.

5. In a second skillet, heat olive oil and the rest of the garlic, and add zucchinis and carrots. Stir until tender.

6. Serve the veggie pasta, and top with turkey meat sauce.

Sprout and Basil Pasta (Serves 4)

This cold pasta is great as a side dish or a main dish, and will be a hit at parties. Brussels sprouts, while they don’t have the best reputation, are deliciously crisp and not overpowering if cooked right. They are also one of the cruciferous vegetables, which are associated with powerful cancer-fighting properties.

Ingredients

- 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

- 1/2 tsp salt

- 1/2 lb sliced mushrooms

- 1/2 lb chopped Brussels sprouts

- 1 lb cooked penne pasta

- 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

- Fresh basil

- Freshly ground black pepper

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 450°F.

2. On a baking pan or glass cookware, lay out Brussels sprouts and mushrooms.

3. Drizzle olive oil on Brussels sprouts and sprinkle with garlic, salt, and pepper.

4. Bake for 20–25 minutes or until tender.

5. Meanwhile, boil 4 cups water in a pot with a dash of salt. Add pasta when boiling and cook according to package directions.

6. Once vegetables are ready, mix with cooked pasta, and add basil and cheese.

These three pasta dinners will be perfect for company, a date, or even a weekday dinner. They are quick to throw together, while keeping you well nourished and feeling great. Tell us how you liked them below! Enjoy!

Image Credit: Mandy Martini