Pasta salad is one of the simplest and most filling meals you can make. Pasta can seem a little scary at times (you know, because it’s high carb and all), but with my tips and tricks you will realise just how healthy and low-fat a pasta salad can be. This low fat honey dijon salad is the perfect salad to have you loving pasta again!
Firstly, it’s all in the dressing.
Often the downfall of pasta is the dressing or sauce. Creamy sauces are popular, as are oil-based dressings. Oil is fantastic for you in small amounts but when you are watching your weight an oil-free dressing can be helpful. Sugar is another sneaky additive that often finds it’s way into pasta sauce (including tomato-based sauces). For this low fat honey dijon pasta salad I have used the Walden Farms Honey Dijon sauce. It’s a low fat, low carb, low sugar sauce and it’s delicious. Note that the Walden Farms range is sweetened with splenda so my recommendation would be to use sparingly.
Load up the veggies.
Pasta salads should have a perfect veggie to pasta ratio (1:1). Add as many fresh organic vegetables as you can and you will up the nutritional quality of your meal.
Add a healthy protein.
Because I have a few vegan readers I didn’t add a protein to this recipe, but after making it I stirred through tuna for a complete meal. Adding protein to your pasta will help with satiety (feeling fuller for longer) without binging on carbs. For a vegan option you could toss through chickpeas or beans or even marinated tofu/tempeh. You could also add cooked chicken, salmon or prawns (YUM)!
Use a wholemeal/good quality pasta.
It’s all in the pasta after all. Carbohydrates are not a food to be feared and should be consumed for the body to work at it’s best. Choose carbohydrates that are low GI (convert to sugar slowly) and high in dietary fibre. Wholegrain pasta is the best in my opinion.
- 1 cup dry Fusilli pasta (wholegrain)
- 1/4 cup frozen peas
- 1/4 cup sweet solanto cherry tomatoes
- 1/4 cup baby spinach
- 1/4 red onion, finely chopped
- fresh parsley
- 4 tbsp Walden Farms Honey Dijon dressing
- salt and pepper to taste
- Cook the fusilli pasta as per directions. During the last 5 minutes of cooking add the frozen peas. Drain and set aside;
- Dice the tomatoes, spinach, onion and parsley and add to a mixing bowl;
- Add the fusilli pasta and toss through the dressing;
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Approximate nutritional value per serve:
- Calories: 187kcal
- Protein: 6.5g
- Fat: 1g
- Carbohydrates: 38.5g
- Fibre: 3g
- Sugar: 4g
Do you eat pasta? Have you been afraid to eat pasta?