So many women tell me that they would love to cook healthy, easy meals if they just had time. I agree: Cooking can be time-consuming. There is not only the time to prep the ingredients but also the time to buy quality ingredients to have on hand to prepare a meal. Even though I keep a well-stocked pantry of items I use often, I still find myself having to go to the local grocery store or supermarket to get specific ingredients. At the end of the day, like many of you, I’m tired! I can completely understand why many people resort to fast food, or pre-made food that they can microwave, as a meal.
I believe that good food can be easy to make, delicious, and inexpensive. This pasta toss is one more example of a quick and easy meal that comes together in no time and tastes delicious. The ingredients won’t break the bank and may be things you already have in your refrigerator, freezer or pantry. This recipe can be changed up any way you like, including using different vegetables, pasta, or cheeses.
It works well as an easy dinner, a lunch, brunch meal, and reheats perfectly to have again another night or for lunch the next day. Double the recipe and this becomes a perfect meal to bring as a hostess gift or as a gift to family who need a delicious dinner with leftovers. Frozen or fresh vegetables work well in this recipe so feel free to clean out the freezer and use whatever you have on hand to create new flavor combinations. The possibilities are endless!
Vegetable Pasta Toss
- 2 medium zucchinis, shave or peeled into long ribbons (or use a vegetable spiralizer to make noodles)
- 1 8-ounce package of pappardelle or tagliatelle pasta
- ½ pound fresh green beans trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces (or 2 cups frozen cut green beans, thawed)
- 4 to 5 stalks asparagus, sliced diagonally
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- ½ cup part skim ricotta cheese
- Salt & pepper to taste
- ¼ cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
- ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
- Add zucchini to a colander and sprinkle lightly with salt. Allow to sit 10-15 mins to drain some of the excess liquid.
- Bring a 5 to 6-quart pot filled with cold water to a boil. Cook pasta according the package directions until al dente. Add green beans and asparagus during last 1 minute of cooking. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water.
- Drain pasta, green beans and asparagus over the zucchini in the colander.
- Return pasta and vegetable mix to the pot. Add in tomatoes and stir
- Add ricotta cheese, salt & pepper, ½ cup of reserved pasta water and stir to combine. Add more pasta water, 1 tablespoon at a time as needed until cheese sauce is desired consistency.
- Divide pasta mixture into serving bowls. Garnish with sprinkles of pecorino Romano and parsley. Serve with fresh green salad or toasted pieces of multi-grain bread.
Featured photo by Ella Olsson