Healthy pasta dishes can be hard to come by. I almost never order pasta when I’m eating out. Restaurant pasta is usually loaded with tons of cheese, salt, and oil. It’s also often way more food than anyone needs for one meal. (I’m looking at you, Cheesecake Factory.) Naturally, it’s delicious. Is it good for you? Not so much.
It’s a shame — it really doesn’t have to be this way. You really can enjoy pasta guilt-free, as long as you keep a few things in mind. (1) Keep a high vegetable-to-pasta ratio, (2) measure and minimize your fats, and (3) always eat a sensible portion. This Latin-style pasta is a perfect example of this philosophy in action.
This pasta is full of big, bold Latin flavors. Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce and cumin bring heat and spice to the tomato-based sauce, while a touch cilantro adds a little brightness. Not a fan of cilantro? Just use fresh basil instead. A hearty 1 1/2 cup serving clocks in at 251 calories and just 223 mg sodium — much better stats than the standard restaurant options.
Here’s how to put this filling, flavorful Latin-style pasta together.
- 4 oz high fiber farfalle, like Barilla Plus
- 1 link (80 g) hot chorizo
- 1 carrot
- 1 14.5-oz can no salt added diced tomatoes, undrained
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, diced
- 2/3 cup frozen peas
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon fresh cilantro, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Fill a large sauce pot with water and place it over high heat. When the water comes to boil, drop the carrot in the water for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the carrot has begun to soften. Remove the carrot from the boiling water with a slotted spoon. Allow the carrot to cool slightly and peel the carrot by hand with a paper towel; the peel should come off quite easily. Dice the carrot and set it aside.
- Using the same water that you used to blanch the carrot, cook the farfalle until al dente (about 7 to 8 minutes). Drain the pasta and set it aside, taking care to reserve a small amount of the starchy pasta water.
- Next, prepare the sauce. Remove the chorizo from the casing and cut it into small cubes. Place the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Sauté the chorizo with the onions, garlic, and carrots. When the onions begin to turn translucent, add in the peas, tomatoes, tomato paste, and chipotle pepper. Stir well. When the peas have heated through, add in the cilantro, cumin, and black pepper. Thin the sauce as needed using the reserved pasta water and adjust the seasonings to taste.
- Add the farfalle to the pan; stir gently to combine. Serve warm.
- Per 1 1/2 cups (about 8 oz)
- Servings: 4 | Calories: 251 | Total Fat: 8.2g | Saturated Fat: 2.0g | Trans Fat: 0.0g | Cholesterol: 14mg | Sodium: 223mg | Total Carbohydrates: 36.9g | Dietary Fiber: 5.6g | Sugars: 8.6g | Protein: 9.9g