Healthy Picnic Pastas

Your favorite pasta dish can now be both delicious and nutritious – and easy on the waistline as well. Health.com has put a healthier twist on your popular pasta dishes:

Green-and-white pasta

Green-and-white pasta reproduces the richness and the taste of your favorite cream-pasta, minus the calories. The trick is to mix fat-free sour cream and cottage cheese with a smidgen of pesto. This dish also contains a serving of green peas which provide more than 50 percent of your RDA. Add in some shrimp or grilled chicken to boost protein.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup fat-free sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons commercial pesto
  • 3 tablespoons hot water
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup fat-free cottage cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1 cup snow peas, trimmed and thinly cut crosswise (4 cuts per pod)
  • 1 1/2 cups (4 ounces) uncooked farfalle (bow tie pasta)
  • 3/4 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Preparation

Mix the first seven ingredients in a food processor; process until smooth.

Place snow peas in a colander; and set in sink. Cook pasta according to package directions; skip salt and fat (about 12 minutes). Drain over snow peas; rinse under cold water, and drain well. Combine pasta, snow peas, frozen peas, and pesto mixture in a large bowl, and toss to coat. Sprinkle with parsley.

Asian pasta salad

This sweet-and-sour pasta salad is big in taste and big in nutrition. The cabbage and green onions provide you with plenty of vitamin C. This dish also has a crunchy texture thanks to Chinese noodles, almonds and, and sunflower seeds. If want to make it even healthier you can add bell pepper slices, or shiitake mushrooms. You can also opt to add pock chops with hoisin sauce.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons sliced almonds
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted sunflower seed kernels
  • 1 (8-ounce) package Chinese noodles, crumbled (such as ka-me)
  • 1/3 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup less-sodium beef broth
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 (10-ounce) package angel hair slaw

Preparation

Place medium skillet over medium heat. Put noodles, almonds, and sunflower seed kernels into the pan; cook for r32 minutes or until lightly toasted, stirring frequently.

Mix vinegar, broth, sugar, oil, salt, and pepper in a small bowl, stir using whisk.

Add green onions and slaw to the toasted noodle mixture and put them in a large bowl. Add the vinegar mixture. Toss them well. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Source: health.com