Archive for the tag “pasta”

light turkey meatballs


{{ light turkey meatballs }}

my husband loves this recipe.  just not sure where it came from. 

Stock the freezer with these healthy meatballs and, when the mood strikes, try them over pasta, on a sammie, or even in salad.
3 slices whole-wheat sandwich bread*
¼ cup whole milk
1 ½ pounds ground turkey ( 93% lean, dark meat )
3 scallions, finely chopped
2 small garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 large egg
1 ½ teaspoon coarse salt
½ teaspoon ground pepper

Place bread in food processor; pulse until fine crumbs form.

In a small bowl, mix breadcrumbs with milk; set aside.

In a large bowl, combine turkey, scallions, garlic, parsley, egg, salt, pepper, and breadcrumb mixture; mix gently with a fork.

With hand, form mixture into ball, each equal to 2 level tablespoons; arrange in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

To freeze:

Place baking sheet with meatballs in the freezer, and freeze for about 1 hour to set their shape; transfer the frozen meatballs to an air-tight container or resealable plastic bag, and freeze for up to 3 months.

For sliders:

Heat broiler, with rack set 4 inches from heat.

Lightly oil a rimmed baking sheet; place meatballs on sheet. Broil, turning occasionally, until cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes.

Place meatball inside slider rolls, and top with your favorite BBQ sauce.

For Spaghetti & meatballs:

In a skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook frozen meatballs until browned, 5 to 7 minutes.

Add 1 ½ cup store-bought marinara sauce and ½ cup water; cook until heated through, about 5 minutes. Cook 8 ounces favorite spaghetti; toss with sauce.

*You can substitute dry ( boxed ) bread crumbs, but it won’t be the same.
I think about 1/3 cup of dry crumbs might provide a similar amount of “filler” as the 3 slices of fresh bread.


{{ macaroni and cheese }}


This recipes comes from the Food Network / courtesy of Rachael Ray.  We’ve tweaked it a bit … here’s our version:

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour, or corn starch
1 1/2 cups whole or 2 percent milk
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, ground or freshly grated
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper, a couple pinches


Heat a medium, deep skillet over medium heat.

Add oil and butter. When butter melts into the oil, add flour and combine.

Gently cook, whisking flour and butter together, until smooth and flour has had a chance to cook, about 3 minutes.

Slowly add milk while continuing to whisk. Gently bring milk to a bubble while stirring frequently.

Allow the milk to thicken a bit, then stir in 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese a handful at a time.

Season sauce with nutmeg and cayenne. Taste and add a little salt, if you like.

Add cooked pasta to sauce and coat completely by turning over and over in the cheese sauce.

Transfer to a baking dish and top with remaining cheese.

Place baking dish under a hot broiler and brown the cheddar cheese on top.

Serve and enjoy!
Yield: 4 entree servings, 8 side servings

Old Bay Pasta Salad

{{ OLD BAY pasta salad }}

 This is our family’s favorite go-to summer pasta.  Hope you enjoy it too!

½ pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in ½-inch strips
1 tablespoon sesame oil
½ cup soy sauce { we used Bragg Liquid Aminos}
1 teaspoon OLD BAY Seasoning
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary


1 package { 13.25 oz. } 100% whole grain pasta, uncooked
1 clove garlic, minced
½ cup fresh parsley, chopped { optional }
1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
½ cup scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
1 cup thawed frozen peas { optional }
1 cup thawed frozen white corn
¼ cup mayonnaise { we like Vegenaise or safflower mayonnaise }
¼ cup ranch salad dressing { we like Low fat Natural Fresh Ranch Dressing }
OLD BAY Seasoning, to taste
toasted pecans*
1 small head romaine lettuce, chopped


In a small bowl, mix oil, soy sauce and seasonings.  Place chicken in large resealable plastic bag or glass dish.  Add marinade.  Turn to coat well.

Place in refrigerator to marinate for at least 1 hour { longer for extra zesty flavor ~ we always marinade overnight }.  Remove chicken from marinade.  Discard any remaining marinade.

Grill over medium-high heat 6 to 7 minutes per side or until chicken is cooked through, turning frequently.  Allow to cool, then cut into bite-size pieces.

Cook pasta in boiling salted water as directed on package.  Rinse under cold water.  Drain.

In a large bowl, toss pasta in with chicken, tomatoes, scallions, peas and corn.

Whisk together mayo, salad dressing and OLD BAY in small bowl.  Pour over pasta mixture and mix well.  Cover.

Refrigerate 2 hours. { optional }

Just before serving, gently stir in the chopped romaine and toasted pecans.  Sprinkle on some additional OLD BAY, if desired.

*to toast pecans ~ pre-heat oven to 350-degrees.  place nuts on a baking sheet and bake for a few minutes, watching carefully and shaking occasionally.   they will be done when golden and fragrant (about 5-10 minutes).  set aside to cool.

Orzo Summer Salad

{{ orzo summer salad }}

Another super simple, super tasty recipe that our family loves.

2 cups cooked orzo
1 ½ cups cherry/grape tomatoes
½ cup scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
salt & pepper, to taste
4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
1/3 cup toasted pine nuts*


Combine orzo, tomatoes, onions and basil in a large bowl.

Whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and add to orzo mixture.

Stir in feta crumbles.

Chill for at least 2-3 hours.  Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Note ~ to toast pine nuts:  add 1 teaspoon olive oil over medium heat and saute nuts with a pinch of salt.  Stirring frequently until lightly golden brown, about 2 minutes.

Orzo with Fresh Parmesan Cheese

{{ orzo with fresh parmesan cheese }}

 Simple. Simple. Simple.

1 { 32-ounce } carton organic, low sodium chicken broth { or vegetable broth }
2 cups water
1 pound uncooked orzo
1 cup frozen peas, thawed { or sugar snap peas }
1 cup fresh parmesan cheese, grated
1 teaspoon dried basil
salt and pepper, to taste
12-ounces skinless, boneless chicken, cut into bite-size pieces {{ optional }}

Combine the broth and 2 cups water in a large pot; bring to a boil.

Add chicken.

Reduce heat, and simmer about 12 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat; stir in the peas, ¼ cup cheese, basil, salt and pepper.

Top each serving with freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Serve and enjoy!

Spicy Soba Noodles

{{ spicy cold soba noodles }

Adapted from Marilu Henner’s book Healthy Life Kitchen.   Makes a generous amount – great for packing in lunches the next day.  Here’s our version:  

1/3 cup tamari { or soy sauce }
1 tablespoon molasses
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
¼ cup tahini { we used a little less }
1 tablespoon barley malt
1 tablespoon chili oil { start with a little, and then add more to taste if you want }
3 tablespoons balsamic or red wine vinegar
½ bunch scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
1/4 cup carrots, shredded or julianned
1/4 cup green cabbage, shredded
fresh cilantro sprigs for garnish
salt, to taste

1 package { ½ pound } soba noodles { Japanese buckwheat noodles }


Place tamari in a pan over high heat and reduce by half.

Turn heat to low, stir in molasses, and warm briefly.

Transfer to a mixing bowl.  Add sesame oil, tahini, barley malt, chili oil, vinegar, and scallions, and whisk to combine. Season to taste with salt, if desired.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a rapid boil.  Add noodles, bring back to a boil, and cook, stirring occasionally, until they  begin to soften, about 3 minutes. { Soba noodles can overcook very quickly, so stay nearby and pay attention }.

Have ready a large bowl of ice water.

Drain noodles, plunge in ice water, and drain again.

Place in a colander and rinse well under cold running water.

Combine noodles and sauce, toss well, and chill.


recipe ~ spicy lemon pasta

{{ spicy lemon pasta }}

1 pound angel hair pasta* { we like the De Boles Organic Angel Hair Pasta }

3 tablespoons olive oil

Zest and juice of 2 lemons

3 garlic cloves, minced

3 jalapeno peppers, seeded and thinly sliced

½ cup frozen peas, thawed

1 teaspoon sea salt

freshly ground pepper, to taste

1/3 – 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese


Bring a pot of lightly salted water to a boil.  Add the pasta and cook according to the package directions.  Drain and set aside.

Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-low heat.  Add the lemon zest, garlic and jalapenos and cook until lightly browned, 4 to 5 minutes.

Add the pasta, lemon juice, peas, salt, pepper, and remaining oil and cook until heated through, 3 to 4 minutes.

Add the Parmesan, toss well, and serve.

De Boles Organic Jerusalem Artichoke Spaghetti Style Pasta is really good too.

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