Nourishing Summer Vegetable Pasta
An easy, tasty, and healthy summer vegetable pasta made with simple and nourishing ingredients. This recipe is completely vegetarian and is ready under 30 minutes. It’s a nutritious, balanced, and satisfying plant-based pasta dish that’s great for any night of the week!
If you’re wondering what my favourite food ever is, it’s pasta. Part of me likes to wishfully think that I was Italian in a past life, because there’s not much more that I love more than a good bowl of pasta. Like my Easy Lemon Ricotta Pasta and Sun-dried Tomato Pesto Pasta.
Is Pasta Healthy?
From a nutrition standpoint, I think pasta has often gotten a bad rap due to the fact that it’s a primarily carbohydrate food. But as a dietitian, I’m here to tell you that pasta is a nutritious food that can absolutely be the centre of balanced and healthy meals.
Take this Summer Vegetable Pasta recipe. It’s full of nourishing plant foods including the pasta (which comes from wheat, which is a plant), fresh vegetables, extra virgin olive oil, and white kidney beans. Because it’s a source of carbohydrates, protein, fibre, healthy fat and vegetables, this Summer Veggie Pasta fits my balanced meal formula.
Not only is it a balanced meal, it also takes less than 30 minutes to make which is a huge win. It’s also important to remember that in many countries, pasta is actually fortified with important nutrients for health like iron, folic acid, and three major B vitamins thiamin, niacin and riboflavin.
There are also many pasta varieties out there that are higher in fibre like whole grain pasta (used in this recipe), fibre-fortified pasta, and pasta made from legumes like chickpea pasta and lentil pasta.
Summer Vegetable Pasta Ingredients:
To make this specific Summer Vegetable Pasta recipe, you’ll need:
- Pasta of your choice
- Extra virgin olive oil
- White kidney beans
- Cherry tomatoes
- Green peas (fresh, frozen or canned will work)
- Parmesan cheese
- Red pepper flakes
- Salt and pepper
Which Pasta Should I Use?
As I mentioned, there are many different varieties available on the market. Not only are there all of the different pasta shapes and sizes, but there’s also different ingredients they’re made out of too.
For this recipe, I like to use a long thin pasta noodle like spaghetti, spaghettini or linguine. That being said, you can really use any pasta shape/size that you prefer.
For some extra fibre and micronutrients I choose to use a whole grain pasta in this recipe. However, you can use a traditional white pasta, a white pasta with added fibre, a legume-based pasta or even a gluten-free pasta. Whatever works for you!
If you don’t have the specific vegetables that this recipe calls for on hand, no problem! This recipe is super flexible and you can make substitutions as needed. Here are some options:
- Swap asparagus for: Zucchini, spinach, kale, broccoli, green beans, or okra.
- Instead of cherry tomatoes, try: Grape tomatoes, bell peppers, summer squash, yellow beans, or cauliflower.
- If you don’t have peas, use: Green beans, corn, broccoli, spinach, kale, zucchini, or summer squash.
- Swap white beans for: Chickpeas, an animal protein like chicken, or seafood like shrimp or scallops.
How to Make This Summer Vegetable Pasta Vegan:
You can make it vegan simply by omitting the parmesan cheese, or by using a plant-based alternative to parmesan.
To make this pasta recipe gluten-free, substitute the wheat-based pasta for a gluten-free variety.
How to Store Leftovers:
If you have leftovers, I recommend storing them in an airtight container in the fridge up to 4 days. Then just reheat and enjoy! Alternatively, you can enjoy leftovers cold like a pasta salad.
Connect with Hannah Magee, RD!
I hope you love this recipe as much as I do. If you try it, let me know what you think by leaving a rating and a review in the comments below. Oh, and be sure to take a photo and tag me on @hannahmagee_rd so I can see!
Nourishing Summer Vegetable Pasta
- 250 grams whole wheat spaghettini, approx. 1/2 500g box
- 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes
- 2 cups chopped asparagus
- 1 cup frozen green peas, can sub. with canned or fresh
- 1 can white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 pinch red pepper flakes
- 1/4 tsp salt
- black pepper , to taste
- parmesan cheese, for serving
- chilli oil (optional), for serving
- Cook pasta according to package directions.
- Warm 2 tbsp olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add garlic and saute for 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Add tomatoes, asparagus, and peas and cook for 5-6 minutes.
- Stir in salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes and continue to cook vegetables another 2-3 minutes.
- Once pasta is cooked, drain and add to the pan with vegetables. Toss pasta and vegetables together, then add drained white kidney beans and toss again.
- Drizzle remaining 2 tbsp olive oil over pasta and adjust salt/pepper to taste. Serve immediately with parmesan cheese to your liking and a drizzle of chilli oil (optional). Enjoy!