2 Fast Pastas: Almond-Pesto Pasta or Marinara Pasta

Whip up these filling pasta dishes in a flash!

marinara sauce

Creating a deliciously healthy meal couldn’t be easier! Make a pesto spaghetti recipe or a marinara spaghetti recipe simply by preparing the noodles according to package directions and tossing with either of these 5- ingredient-or-fewer  meatless sauces. Read on to find out about these variations and recipes.

Looking for an alternative to whole wheat or whole grain pastas? Legume-fortified pastas, Barilla Plus, are a good alternative.

For pesto spaghetti dishes, try these variations:

1. Parsley and almonds (recipe follows)

2. Basil and pine nuts (See our Basil, Spinach, and Pine nut pesto for this type)

3. Arugula and pine nuts

4. Watercress and walnut (simply substitute the parsley with watercress and the almonds with walnuts, following the recipe below)

Quick tip:

Add halved cherry tomatoes or cooked broccoli to the pesto pasta to add nutrients and create a larger portion sizes. For instance if pasta is full of broccoli, the portion size could be larger with no added carbs.

For marinara spaghetti dishes:

Use whole canned tomatoes or freshly chopped tomatoes, chopped basil, garlic and some olive oil (recipe follows).

For extra flavor, add any or all of these ingredients: 1 tablespoon of capers, a sprinkling of crushed red pepper flakes,  4 or 5 anchovies, broken up, and about 1/4 chopped kalamata or black olives. When all of these ingredients are added to the marinara sauce, it’s a quick Puttanesca sauce. Want to make this a Puttanesca sauce but not an anchovy fan? Add chunks of canned albacore tuna at the end of cooking time.

Try your favorite pasta with one of these side dishes:
Spring Mix with Roasted Feta and Pears
Rainbow Salad with Honey Lemon Dressing
Warm Cauliflower Salad


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