Terra’s Kitchen Food Blog | Terra’s Kitchen

Pass the Pasta! 5 Ways to Enjoy a (Lightened!) Summer Dinner

Written by Terra | Thu, Jul 28, '16

Summer pastas are some of the easiest meals to make and the most satisfying because they combine fresh ingredients with heavenly noodles. Pasta can have the reputation of being heavy and indulgent, but these meals are cheerful and loaded with seasonal veggies and natural flavors. Whether your kids are looking for a pre-swim meet carb-loading meal or you're craving a skinny lunch to savor poolside, you’ve come to the right place. Here are 5 pasta dishes we've be eating again and again this summer.

1. Skinny Mediterranean Pasta

The crazy trick to keeping this Mediterranean-inspired pasta so low in calories is loading it up with tons of other good stuff. From tomatoes to beans to shallots -- and a surprising hint of lemon juice -- this pasta won’t weigh you down as you dream of cruising the Med from Monaco to Malta.

2. Grilled Zucchini and Creamy Penne

Zucchini is expected this time of year -- it’s peak season and the vines are full. The real surprise, though, is how refreshing this creamy pasta is on a balmy Thursday evening, and the crunch of the toasted pine nuts. Clean, crisp, clear: The 3 Cs are your guide when pairing wine with a savory dish like this, and Sauvignon blanc fits the description. Cheers!

3. Penne with Bacon, Kale and Caramelized Onions

If you are looking for more protein in your pasta, look no further because this one has bacon. (And kale, and caramelized onions, but you don’t have to tell them that!) You can actually almost smell bacon in many northern Rhône wines, which are mostly Syrah-based, so pair one with this penne recipe.

4. Chuck’s Party Pasta Bowl

This bowl is just some orzo, ground chuck, spinach, leeks and an amazingly creamy feta sauce going wild … no big deal. For wine, you pretty much have to go with a Greek Vinho Verde. Cue the theme music, it’s your time to shine in the clean plate club.

5. Whole Wheat Penne - add to any meal!

Add this pantry staple to your vessel for only $2.99 and use it to stretch portions, add calories, or simply in your own recipes. Having a little pasta on hand for emergencies is never a bad thing.

Get started cooking these meals in your kitchen this week!