Pasta has gotten a bad rap lately for its carb-heavy, fattening, and sleep-inducing constructs. If you love the taste of pasta and miss including it in your weekly meal rotation, try a couple of these quick tricks and healthy alternatives for a delicious, guilt-free dinner.
There are so many gluten and grain-free alternatives to pasta noodles. Step back processed wheat pasta and welcome in bean pasta! Black bean, chickpea, and lentil pasta noodles have taken over the racks at your local grocery store. Rather than filling yourself up with processed carbs that will spike and drop your blood sugar, try bean pasta and feel the balanced difference in your appetite.
The plant-based protein and complex carb noodle will keep you fuller longer as the fiber takes longer for your body to digest. Bean pasta tastes so similar to regular wheat pasta, that it’s an easy transition, a healthy switch, and a proven step towards effortless weight loss.
You can find my favorite black bean noodles here.
Ground beef effortlessly melts into pasta sauce, creating a delicious combination of meat, sauce, and noodle. Try swapping out the ground beef with ground turkey meat. A leaner option to the red meat — but just as tasty — ground turkey meat satisfies you with the protein you need and cuts down on the richness of your dinner. It is also much easier to digest.
Marinara Sauce is Secretly Sweet
Check your labels when buying your marinara sauce next time. Always buy organic of course, but make sure there is no sugar added to your sauce. Most of the commercial brands tend to sneak in added sugar. If you see 3-4 grams of sugar on the nutrition facts, don’t fret, that is simply the sugar in the tomatoes.
Here is a great brand that I always keep on hand in my pantry.
Conceal Cruciferous Greens
Pasta is one of the easiest dinners to put together. Take a few extra minutes to toss in some broccoli, spinach, asparagus, mushrooms, and bell pepper to skyrocket the nutritional value of your meal. We all have those days when we would much rather scarf down a slice of pizza or bowl of cheesy, saucy pasta instead of our daily value of broccoli trees and asparagus spears. Enjoy your pseudo-savory meal by adding in a few extra greens into the sauce. If you have picky eaters at home, simply blend some greens into your marinara and they will never know the difference.
Not only will the veggies seamlessly blend into the sauce, they will also fill you up, keep you full longer, and aid in your digestion. If you like the taste of veggies, good for you! If not, pasta is a perfect meal to increase the veggies in your diet without having to always taste them.
Remember that spinach cooks down. So, if you do not want to play hide and seek trying to find your leafy greens, toss in a couple large handfuls.