Skinny Spicy Spaghetti with Garlic, Parmesan and Veggies

by Anjali @ The Picky Eater on May 15, 2013

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I love creating healthy pasta recipes.

Pasta is one of those foods that we’re told not to eat if we’re on a diet. It has “way too many carbs” and can make you “put on weight.” But pasta is also one of the best comfort foods we have, and for people who love it, it’s so hard to give it up!

Granted, I’m not a fan of white pasta. White pasta is similar to white bread – it doesn’t really have a ton of nutritional value. But by swapping out the white pasta for whole wheat pasta and making a few other healthy additions, you can have your “cake” and eat it too!

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Here is how to transform regular pasta into a Skinny Pasta recipe:

  • Use whole wheat pasta, and stick to 2oz per serving
  • Make your plate fuller with TONS of veggies (this recipe uses broccoli, red peppers and zucchini) – load up on these and they will make you feel like you have more pasta on your plate!
  • Use plenty of spices vs. oil: spices have health benefits and virtually no calories, and they make your veggies taste great. My go-to spices for pasta are: oregano, salt, crushed red pepper, and garlic.
  • Get a really great pasta sauce or make one at home (I like Muir Glen’s Garden Vegetable pasta sauce)
  • Don’t skimp on the cheese – use 2 Tbsp shredded fresh parmesan to top your pasta, it’ll melt and make the entire dish super gooey and delicious

I promise, if you follow these steps you can enjoy pasta any day of the week, and feel great about what you’re putting into your body!

The Ingredients
  • 8 oz whole wheat spaghetti (2oz per serving)
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 small broccoli heads, chopped into small florets
  • 3 zucchini, diced
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 2 red bell peppers, diced
  • 2 cups low sugar, organic spaghetti sauce (I used the Muir Glen Organic Garden Blend)
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese (use 1-2 Tbsp per serving)
  • salt & pepper to taste

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The Directions
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Step 1: Cook spaghetti according to package directions, set aside.
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Step 2: Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil, onions, and garlic – saute for 3-5 minutes, until the onions are slightly translucent. Add the broccoli, zucchini, oregano, crushed red pepper, and salt/pepper to taste. Cook for 5-10 minutes until all of the vegetables have cooked through.
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Step 3: Heat the spaghetti sauce in a small pot over low heat. Add the diced red bell peppers to the sauce, simmer for 10 minutes. To serve: take 2 oz of the whole wheat spaghetti and top with 1/4 of the sauce, 1/4 of the vegetable mixture, and 1 Tbsp parmesan cheese.
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This meal is a regular staple in our house. The husband loves it, and I love how easy it is to make! You can use any veggies you like in this dish: kale, chard, other squashes, carrots, would all taste great.
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This recipe makes 4 huge servings, and each serving has only 310 Calories, 7.3g Fat, 57g Carbs, 11g Fiber, 0.8g Sugar, and 12.9g Protein! It is spicy, creamy,  has great texture and is family-friendly.
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Is your mouth watering yet? 🙂
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Skinny Spicy Spaghetti with Garlic, Parmesan and Veggies

Yield: 4 servings

This recipe makes 4 huge servings. Nutritional Information per serving: 310 Calories 7.3g Fat 57g Carbs 11g Fiber 0.8g Sugar 12.9g Protein

Ingredients

  • 8 oz whole wheat spaghetti (2oz per serving)
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 small broccoli heads, chopped into small florets
  • 3 zucchini, diced
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 2 red bell peppers, diced
  • 2 cups low sugar, organic spaghetti sauce (I used the Muir Glen Organic Garden Blend)
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese (use 1-2 Tbsp per serving)
  • salt & pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Cook spaghetti according to package directions, set aside.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil, onions, and garlic - saute for 3-5 minutes, until the onions are slightly translucent. Add the broccoli, zucchini, oregano, crushed red pepper, and salt/pepper to taste. Cook for 5-10 minutes until all of the vegetables have cooked through.
  3. Heat the spaghetti sauce in a small pot over low heat. Add the diced red bell peppers to the sauce, simmer for 10 minutes. To serve: take 2 oz of the whole wheat spaghetti and top with 1/4 of the sauce, 1/4 of the vegetable mixture, and 1 Tbsp parmesan cheese.
http://pickyeaterblog.com/skinny-spicy-spaghetti-with-garlic-parmesan-and-veggies/

{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Gary Weisbrodt May 15, 2013 at 9:28 am

Oh sounds so good.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 15, 2013 at 9:40 am

Thanks Gary! I’m sure you will love this recipe!

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Maria Tadic May 15, 2013 at 12:11 pm

I love pasta too! And it can totally be healthy if you don’t load up on cheese, creamy sauces or large portions. I always add tons of veggies to our pasta dishes. Makes them super yummy!

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 15, 2013 at 4:33 pm

Exactly!! Whole wheat pasta can actually be a great base for recipes and a good way to get some extra fiber/whole grains into your diet. Sounds like you and I make our pastas in very similar ways 🙂 Adding veggies to bulk up the dish is wonderful!

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Small Footprints May 15, 2013 at 3:14 pm

Oh this is just a beautiful dish and looks like spring. I’m vegan so would leave off the Parmesan but I’ve learned a trick for replacing it … I just toast some bread crumbs in a bit of olive oil and garlic. Then I sprinkle them on top of pasta. It gives one the “mouth feel” of Parmesan and adds a nice flavor. Thank you for sharing this recipe … I’m definitely trying it out! 🙂

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 15, 2013 at 4:35 pm

That is such a great tip!! Love the idea of using toasted garlic breadcrumbs instead of the parmesan for a Vegan take on this recipe 🙂 Thanks for sharing! Let me know how it turns out!

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coffeediva May 18, 2013 at 7:14 am

This pasta has all of my favorite things in it! I can’t wait to try it out. I actually have some friends coming over for dinner this evening so I think I’ll try it out on them – LOL! They love it when I do that 🙂 Thank you for the wonderful recipe and have a fantastic weekend 🙂

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 20, 2013 at 4:28 pm

Oh awesome!! You’ll have to let me know how you and your friends liked this recipe – I’d love to hear how it went! Hope you had a great weekend too!

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Vaneeda Chenchooliah May 19, 2013 at 4:30 am

This looks delicious and really easy to make, I cannot wait to try making it myself. The instructions are clear and easy to follow and the pictures show that it turned out really good. I really love the layout of your blog, it looks very warm and fresh at the same time. It truly inspired me to be more picky when choosing what I eat and also to try being more healthy in life.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 23, 2013 at 11:55 pm

Thank you so much for your kind words Vaneeda! I can’t wait to hear how you like this recipe! 🙂

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DB-The Foodie Stuntman May 19, 2013 at 2:52 pm

Hi Anjali,

I found you through G+. Nice to make your acquaintance. We’re also neighbors (I live in Fremont). This dish sounds delicious and I like the addition of vegetables with the substitution of whole wheat pasta but there’s something that you’ve touched upon that I think is the key to eating healthy which is the whole concept of portion control. Do you know who Dr. Dean Edell is? I subscribe his theory of nutrition which, to summarize, says eat a varied diet (including the unhealthy stuff) but just watch your amounts.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 23, 2013 at 11:57 pm

Hi!! It’s nice to meet you too! That’s awesome that you’re in the bay as well – I used to live in Fremont a long time ago 🙂 I do know who Dr. Dean Edell is and I think he’s great! My dad is actually a huge fan of his and that’s how I got introduced. But yes, I completely agree with you – it’s all about portion control and eating “junkier” things in moderation. You can’t just deprive yourself of everything – it’s so important to have variety and things you enjoy! Thanks so much for your thoughtful words!

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Jacinta Ebsworth May 19, 2013 at 5:56 pm

This looks delicious and so simple! you’ve taken some really great photos I like that their sizing is in line with the writing its makes for easy reading, I particularly like the shot with all the ingredients it gives a great a before and after. It’s good to see a breakdown of the nutritional informations it gives me a better understanding of the differences in ingredients compared to white pasta as you say. Can’t wait to try it! thank you.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 23, 2013 at 11:58 pm

Aw thank you so much Jacinta! I’m so glad the photos and nutritional info was helpful for you! I’m sure you will love this recipe when you try it 🙂 Let me know how it goes!

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Sasha-Lee May 20, 2013 at 2:21 am

Healthy, skinny pasta. Not bad! I love that you make a new twist to normal recipes; it’s a good way to make diets fun and interesting. I love pasta but it can definitely get you bloated. Great recipe, will try it out sometime.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 24, 2013 at 12:00 am

Thank you Sasha-Lee! And yes! My passion is making a healthy twist to everyday recipes – because it’s all about having delicious and nutritious meals in the kitchen! Can’t wait to hear how you like this recipe when you try it! (Oh and fun fact – if you end up eating a ton of veggies with 2 oz or less of pasta, it will help you to not feel as bloated after 🙂 )

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May May 20, 2013 at 7:23 am

Oooh, I haven’t had pasta for a while! This sounds and looks so good. My mouth IS watering.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 20, 2013 at 4:32 pm

Thank you so much May!! I’m sure you will love this recipe!

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Camilyn May 21, 2013 at 4:29 am

Hi Anjali,

Thank you so much for sharing your amazing ways to eat healthily! I love your blog! I love your recipes, they’re delicious and simply easy to be prepared. Besides that, your blog layout is awesome, it’s very user friendly, you’ve linked up your blog so well that I get to pick whichever meal to prepare just by browsing through your. I’m a very picky eater myself, trying to keep fit and at the same time eat healthy and scrumptious food feels so much simpler following your blog. Especially when you link up all the nutritional information for every specific recipes.

Great Job with your blog!

Best,
C

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 24, 2013 at 12:01 am

Hi Camilyn! Thank you sooo much for your kind words about my blog! I’m so glad you’re enjoying my recipes! 🙂 It’s so wonderful to meet you – hope you are having a great week!

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Nick Othen May 22, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Just tried it, fantastic! this will become a family favorite.
Thankyou

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 24, 2013 at 12:01 am

Hooray!! That’s awesome Nick – so happy to hear that!

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Sharon May 23, 2013 at 5:41 pm

With my health issues it is important to stay on tip of the good food options.
I am always searching for better meal planning and this website has great pics and recipes.I added flax to my diet and I can add it in the sauce. I am going to try the broccoli and zucchini.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 24, 2013 at 12:03 am

I’m so happy to hear that my blog has helped you to eat healthier and maintain your health! Flax is a great addition to your diet – you can absolutely add it into the pasta sauce and you won’t even taste it 🙂 Hope you like this recipe!

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Rachel Doggett October 10, 2013 at 5:59 am

Hi Anjali,

Thank you so much for such an amazing recipe!

It is great that you have dishes that use pasta as so many people think this is a food you should essentially avoid when dieting.

It is great that you have included the nutritional information (ex. fat content) as I am following a Weight Watchers Diet I can calculate the points for the dish using this information.

I have recently visited France and fell in love the French cuisine. <3
Have you any healthy recipes for French cuisine that you could share?

Thanks for your help 🙂
Rachel

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater October 10, 2013 at 10:12 am

Hi Rachel! No problem at all — I’m so glad you’re enjoying my recipes and my blog! And yes, I actually think pasta can be really healthy as long as you use whole wheat pasta and you eat it in the right portion size (2 oz is plenty per serving)! Hmmm so I don’t typically make French dishes because they’re not very vegetarian friendly, but if there’s a specific recipe or two you’re looking for I can try to create (or recommend) something! Let me know!

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