Dinner Tonight: Pasta

What's quicker than pasta? These simple dinners come together in a flash.

Dinner Recipe: Shrimp and Pine Nut Spaghetti

Kana Okada

Shrimp and Pine Nut Spaghetti

Time: 30 minutes

Time-Saver: Buy prepeeled and deveined shrimp from the seafood counter.

Serve with Wilted Tomatoes: Heat 1 teaspoon olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 pints grape tomatoes, and sauté for 3 minutes or until skins begin to burst. Stir in 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar, 1⁄8 teaspoon salt, and 1⁄8 teaspoon black pepper.

View Recipe: Shrimp and Pine Nut Spaghetti

Noodles with Roast Pork and Almond Sauce

Kana Okada

Noodles with Roast Pork and Almond Sauce

Time: 40 minutes

Time-Saver: Use bottled ground fresh ginger, found in the produce section.

Serve with Honey Oranges: Peel and section 4 large oranges over a bowl, reserving excess juice. Combine juice, 1 tablespoon honey, and a dash of ground ­allspice; stir with a whisk. Add orange ­sections to honey mixture; toss to coat.

View Recipe: Noodles with Roast Pork and Almond Sauce

Healthy Dinner Recipe: Fresh Tomato, Sausage, and Pecorino Pasta

Randy Mayor

Fresh Tomato, Sausage, and Pecorino Pasta

Time: 40 minutes

Simple Sub: Any short pasta―tubes such as mostaccioli or ziti, or shapes such as campanelle or rotini―will work in this dish.

Serve with Lemony Green Beans: Steam 1 pound trimmed green beans 5 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain and rinse with cold water; drain and place in a bowl. Add 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind, 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, 1 ½ teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper; toss well.

View Recipe: Fresh Tomato, Sausage, and Pecorino Pasta

Healthy Dinner Recipe: Greek Pasta with Meatballs

Randy Mayor

Greek Pasta with Meatballs

Time: 40 minutes

Simple Sub: Substitute ground beef or turkey for lamb; add more breadcrumbs as needed.

Serve with Fennel-Onion Salad: Combine 2 cups vertically sliced fennel bulb and ½ cup vertically sliced red onion in a medium bowl. Combine 1 ½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, and ¼ teaspoon Dijon mustard. Drizzle over salad; toss to combine.

View Recipe: Greek Pasta with Meatballs

Baked Mac and Cheese Recipe

Photo: John Autry

Baked Mac and Cheese

Time: 40 minutes

Great Technique: Blending the cottage cheese creates a smooth, silky sauce.

Serve with Spinach Salad: Combine 8 cups baby spinach, 2 cups halved cherry tomatoes, and ¾ cup vertically sliced red onion in a large bowl. Combine ¼ cup white wine vinegar, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Pour over spinach mixture; toss gently to combine. Serves 6 (serving size: about 1 cup). CALORIES 69; FAT 4.6g (sat 0.6g); SODIUM 104mg

View Recipe: Baked Mac and Cheese

Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo Recipe

Photo: John Autry & Randy Mayor

Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo

Time: 40 minutes

Vegetarian Swap: Substitute 10 ounces sliced mushrooms for shrimp.

Serve with Roasted Asparagus: Combine 2 teaspoons olive oil, ¼ teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper, and 1 pound trimmed asparagus on a jelly-roll pan. Bake at 450° for 6 minutes or until crisp-tender. Serve with lemon wedges. Serves 4. CALORIES 43; FAT 2.4g (sat 0.4g); SODIUM 150mg

View Recipe: Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo

Linguine with Clams and Fresh Herbs Recipe

Photo: Ellie Miller

Linguine with Clams and Fresh Herbs

Time: 30 minutes

Prep Pointer: Scrub the littleneck shells before cooking to remove any sand or grit.

Serve with Baby Romaine Salad: Combine 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 teaspoons honey, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper in a bowl. Drizzle mixture over 6 cups baby romaine lettuce leaves; toss well to coat. Yield: 4 servings. CALORIES 63; FAT 3.7g (sat 0.5g); SODIUM 185mg

View Recipe: Linguine with Clams and Fresh Herbs

Healthy Dinner Recipe: Spanish Spaghetti with Olives

Becky Luigart-Stayner

Spanish Spaghetti with Olives

READER FAVORITE!  

Time: 30 minutes

Kid Pleaser: Sub chicken broth for sherry, and either omit the olives or change to milder black ones.

Serve with Pear, Date, and Manchego Salad: Arrange 1 cup gourmet salad greens on each of 4 plates. Finely chop 2 ripe Bosc pears; toss with 2 teaspoons lemon juice. Divide pears, 6 finely chopped dates, and 2 tablespoons chopped walnuts evenlyh among salads. Combine 1 ½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar, ¼ teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper; stirk with a whisk. Drizzle evenly over salads. Top each salad with ½ ounce shaved Manchego cheese.

View Recipe: Spanish Spaghetti with Olives

Healthy Dinner Recipe: Antipasto-Style Penne

Becky Luigart-Stayner

Antipasto-Style Penne

Time: 40 minutes

Vegetarian Swap: Omit prosciutto; add 2 ounces cubed provolone.

Serve with Lemon-Garlic Broccoli Rabe: Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add ¼ cup water and 1¼ pounds trimmed broccoli rabe to pan. Cover and cook 3 minutes. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil, ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper, and 2 minced garlic cloves. Cook, uncovered, 2 minutes or until broccoli rabe is tender. Remove from heat, and stir in 2 teaspoons grated lemon rind, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, and ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper.

View Recipe: Antipasto-Style Penne

Healthy Dinner Recipes: Farfalle with Lamb Ragu, Ricotta, and Mint

Randy Mayor

Farfalle with Lamb Ragù, Ricotta, and Mint

Time: 40 minutes

Leaner Lamb: Prepackaged supermarket ground lamb can have a high fat content; ask your butcher to grind a lean cut for you.

Serve with Baby Greens Salad: Combine 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard, ½ teaspoon honey, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, and 1⁄8 teaspoon black pepper in a large bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Whisk in 1½ tablespoons extra- virgin olive oil. Add 1 (5-ounce) package baby greens; toss gently to coat.

View Recipe: Farfalle with Lamb Ragù, Ricotta, and Mint

Healthy Dinner Recipes: Pasta with Asparagus, Pancetta, and Pine Nuts

Randy Mayor

Pasta with Asparagus, Pancetta, and Pine Nuts

Time: 40 minutes

Buy the Best: Look for asparagus that’s firm and brightly colored with tightly packed tips.

Serve with White Bean and Thyme Crostini: Arrange 8 (¼-inch-thick) baguette slices on a baking sheet; brush with 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil. Bake at 475° for 4 minutes or until golden. Sauté ½ teaspoon minced garlic in 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil for 30 seconds or until fragrant. Stir in 1⁄3 cup rinsed and drained cannellini beans, 1⁄8 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1⁄8 teaspoon black pepper; mash with a fork. Add 1 tablespoon warm water and ½ teaspoon fresh lemon juice. Spread 1 teaspoon on each baguette slice; sprinkle evenly with 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

View Recipe: Pasta with Asparagus, Pancetta, and Pine Nuts

Healthy Dinner Recipe: Spaghetti with Sausage and Simple Tomato Sauce

Photo: Romulo Yanes

Spaghetti with Sausage and Simple Tomato Sauce

Time: 30 minutes

Make-Ahead Tip: Prepare the sauce up to three days ahead.

Serve with Mixed Greens Salad: Combine 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard, ¼ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon sugar, and ¼ teaspoon black pepper in a medium bowl. Gradually add 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, stirring constantly with a whisk. Drizzle dressing over 4 cups mixed microgreens and 2 cups trimmed watercress; toss to coat.

View Recipe: Spaghetti with Sausage and Simple Tomato Sauce

Vegetarian Dinner Recipes: Farfalle with Tomatoes, Onions, and Spinach

Photo: John Autry

Farfalle with Tomatoes, Onions, and Spinach

Time: 40 minutes

Prep Pointer: Vertically sliced onions (as opposed to rings) separate nicely and meld better with the pasta.

Serve with Olive Flatbread: Preheat oven to 450°. Unroll 1 (11-ounce) can refrigerated thin-crust pizza dough onto a baking sheet. Combine 1½ tablespoons olive oil, ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper, and 1 minced garlic clove; brush over dough. Sprinkle dough with ⅓ cup chopped kala-mata olives. Bake at 450° for 11 minutes or until browned and done. Top with 2 tablespoons thinly sliced basil.

View Recipe: Farfalle with Tomatoes, Onions, and Spinach

Chicken with Lemon-Leek Linguine Recipes

Photo: John Autry

Chicken with Lemon-Leek Linguine

Time: 30 minutes

Prep Pointer: Leeks can be full of grit, so it's a good idea to rinse well after slicing.

Serve with Mixed Greens Salad: Combine 1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard, and a dash of salt. Add 4 cups mixed baby greens; toss. Yield: 4 servings. CALORIES 40; FAT 3.5g (sat 0.5g); SODIUM 66mg

View Recipe: Chicken with Lemon-Leek Linguine

Shrimp Florentine Pasta Recipe

Photo: Johnny Autry

Shrimp Florentine Pasta

Time: 40 minutes

Time-Saver: Purchase peeled and deveined shrimp from your fishmonger.

Serve with Cherry Tomato Caprese Salad: Combine 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, and ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper in a medium bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Add 1 pint halved heirloom cherry tomatoes, ¼ cup fresh basil leaves, and ¼ cup halved miniature mozzarella balls. Toss to combine. Serves 4 (serving size: about 1/2 cup). CALORIES 84; FAT 6.8g (sat 2.5g); SODIUM 132mg

View Recipe: Shrimp Florentine Pasta

Chinese Noodle Salad with Sesame Dressing Recipe

Photo: Johnny Autry

Chinese Noodle Salad with Sesame Dressing

Time: 40 minutes

Time-Saver: Grab packaged, trimmed snap peas from your produce department.

Serve with Tangy Pickled Cucumber: Combine ¼ cup seasoned rice vinegar and 1 tablespoon brown sugar in a medium bowl. Add 2 cups thinly sliced English cucumber, tossing gently to coat. Chill. Serves 4 (serving size: about 1/2 cup). CALORIES 27; FAT 0.1g (sat 0g); SODIUM 225mg

View Recipe: Chinese Noodle Salad with Sesame Dressing

Grilled Chicken Florentine Pasta

Photo: Mary Britton Senseney/Wonderful Machine

Grilled Chicken Florentine Pasta

Time: 40 minutes

Budget Buy: Bone-in chicken breasts cost less than boneless.

Serve with Grilled Broccolini: Preheat grill to medium-high. Combine 1 teaspoon canola oil, 1⁄2 teaspoon crushed red pepper, 14⁄ teaspoon salt, and 1 pound trimmed Broccolini in a large bowl; toss to coat. Place in a grill basket; grill 4 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. CALORIES 58; FAT 1.2g (sat 0.1g); SODIUM 181mg

View Recipe: Grilled Chicken Florentine Pasta

Creamy Butternut, Blue Cheese, and Walnut Cavatappi

Photo: Johnny Autry and Randy Mayor

Creamy Butternut, Blue Cheese, and Walnut Cavatappi

Time: 40 minutes

Kid Tweak: Substitute milder goat cheese for the blue cheese.

Serve with Garlic Hericots Verts: Preheat oven to 425°. Combine 1 teaspoon olive oil, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, ¼ teaspoon black pepper, 4 sliced garlic cloves, and 1½ pounds trimmed haricots verts on a baking sheet, and toss to coat. Bake at 425° for 15 minutes or until tender, stirring once. CALORIES 45; FAT 0.9g (sat 0.1g); SODIUM 87mg

View Recipe: Creamy Butternut, Blue Cheese, and Walnut Cavatappi

Quick Beef Stroganoff

Photo: Johnny Autry and Randy Mayor

Quick Beef Stroganoff

Time: 40 minutes

Simple Swap: Sub slightly more-tender sirloin for flank steak.

Serve with Grainy Mustard Brussels Sprouts: Halve 16 Brussels sprouts; place in a saucepan with 2/3 cup water. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and cook 5 minutes. Stir in 1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard, 1 tablespoon butter, ¼ teaspoon black pepper, and 1/8 teaspoon salt. CALORIES 67; FAT 3.3g (sat 1.9g); SODIUM 143mg

View Recipe: Quick Beef Stroganoff

Garden Alfredo with Chicken

Photo: Johnny Autry

Garden Alfredo with Chicken

Time: 40 minutes

Simple Sub: You can use linguine instead of pappardelle.

Serve with Arugula-Tomato Salad: Combine 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar, 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard, ¼ teaspoon black pepper, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl; stir with a whisk. Add 6 ounces baby arugula, 1 pint halved grape tomatoes, and 1/3 cup vertically sliced red onion; toss to coat. CALORIES 61; FAT 3.7g (sat 0.5g); SODIUM 104mg

View Recipe: Garden Alfredo with Chicken

Two-Cheese Mac and Cheese

Photo: Brian Woodcock

Two-Cheese Mac and Cheese

Time: 40 minutes

Flavor Hit: Unsalted stock adds rich flavor without the extra sodium.

Serve with Roasted Broccoli and Red Bell Pepper: Preheat oven to 400°. Place 6 cups broccoli florets, 1 sliced red bell pepper, 2 sliced garlic cloves, 2 tablespoons olive oil, ¼ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper on a jelly-roll pan; toss to coat. Bake vegetables at 400° for 10 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring after 5 minutes. CALORIES 105; FAT 7.3g (sat 1g); SODIUM 178mg

View Recipe: Two-Cheese Mac and Cheese

Pasta with Roasted-Tomato Meat Sauce

Photo: Jason Wallis

Pasta with Roasted-Tomato Meat Sauce

Time: 40 minutes

Flavor Hit: Don't skip the anchovies in this recipe—they add a savory, salty layer to the sauce.

Serve with Mint and Pea Pesto on Toasted Baguette: Preheat broiler to high. Slice 4 ounces baguette into 8 (½-inch-thick) slices. Place bread in a single layer on a baking sheet. Broil 2 minutes or until browned. Combine ½ cup basil leaves, ½ cup mint leaves, ¼ cup thawed frozen green peas, 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and 2 garlic cloves in a mini food processor; pulse until smooth. Spread about 1 tablespoon pesto on each bread slice. CALORIES 147; FAT 6.9g (sat 1g); SODIUM 268mg

View Recipe: Pasta with Roasted-Tomato Meat Sauce

Tortellini with Snap Peas and Pesto

Photo: Stephen Devries

Tortellini with Snap Peas and Pesto

Time: 25 minutes

Kid Tweaks: Omit the anchovy in the dressing, and sub romaine for radicchio.

Serve with Radicchio Caesar Salad: Combine 3 tablespoons canola mayonnaise, 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, 2 minced garlic cloves, and 1 minced anchovy fillet in a large bowl. Add 2 1/2 cups baby spinach leaves; toss to coat. Top with 5 teaspoons grated Parmesan cheese. CALORIES 77; FAT 4.5g (sat 0.4g); SODIUM 246mg

View Recipe: Tortellini with Snap Peas and Pesto

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