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17 Pasta Recipes For When You're Trying To Be Healthy

No "zoodles" or veggie substitutes here — just pasta, but healthier.

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Andrew Richard / Via BuzzFeed

Pasta is a glorious thing.

Even though traditional pasta is just carbs and more carbs, there's no reason to cut it out entirely. Carbohydrates are still part of a well-rounded, nutritious diet, and they're a good source of energy. Plus, there are ways to incorporate more vegetables, lean protein, and other unprocessed ingredients so that your pasta is more nourishing. That way, you don't have to turn all your vegetables into "zoodles" (aka a sad, floppy excuse for spaghetti and linguine).

And, OK, sure, you might want to try whole-wheat or brown rice pasta instead of refined white flour pasta, depending on your dietary needs and body composition goals (more info on that here), but if you're really just looking to make your favorite pastas healthier, these recipes are a good place to start.

1. Creamy Vegan Lemon and Asparagus Pasta

This sauce is made without butter or dairy but it's still super creamy, garlicky, and full of veggies. Toss it with regular or whole wheat farfalle (bow tie) noodles. Find the recipe here, via Minimalist Baker.
Dana Schultz / Via minimalistbaker.com

This sauce is made without butter or dairy but it's still super creamy, garlicky, and full of veggies. Toss it with regular or whole wheat farfalle (bow tie) noodles.

Find the recipe here, via Minimalist Baker.

http://yupitsvegan.com/2014/03/12/one-pot-spaghetti-alla-puttanesca/
http://yupitsvegan.com/2014/03/12/one-pot-spaghetti-alla-puttanesca/

You actually cook the pasta in the sauce so prep and cleanup are ridiculously easy. And this hearty puttanesca is full of veggies and robust Mediterranean flavors.

Find the recipe here, via Yup It's Vegan.

3. Healthy Garlic Shrimp and Broccoli Pasta

Literally perfect. Find the recipe here, via Well Plated.
Erin Clarke / Via wellplated.com

Literally perfect.

Find the recipe here, via Well Plated.

4. Sesame-Peanut Soba Noodle Salad With Avocado

It's sweet and spicy and crunchy and creamy — plus, these noods are served cold so it's literally comfort food for summer. Find the recipe here, via Yes to Yolks.
Molly / Via yestoyolks.com

It's sweet and spicy and crunchy and creamy — plus, these noods are served cold so it's literally comfort food for summer.

Find the recipe here, via Yes to Yolks.

5. Creamy Avocado and Spinach Pasta

This sauce is super rich from pureed avocado but it's also full of fiber, protein, and healthy fats — plus, it's super low in sodium! Find the recipe here, via Jo Cooks.
Jo Cismaru / Via jocooks.com

This sauce is super rich from pureed avocado but it's also full of fiber, protein, and healthy fats — plus, it's super low in sodium!

Find the recipe here, via Jo Cooks.

6. Mushroom Bolognese

This meat-free version of bolognese sauce is packed with an entire pound of mushrooms and other delicious veggies. Find the recipe here, via Gimme Some Oven.
Ali Ebright / Via gimmesomeoven.com

This meat-free version of bolognese sauce is packed with an entire pound of mushrooms and other delicious veggies.

Find the recipe here, via Gimme Some Oven.

7. Sicilian Pasta with Almonds and Anchovies

This light Mediterranean sauce is mostly anchovies, olives, almonds, and herbs.Find the recipe here, via The View From Great Island.
Sue Moran / Via theviewfromgreatisland.com

This light Mediterranean sauce is mostly anchovies, olives, almonds, and herbs.

Find the recipe here, via The View From Great Island.

8. Chicken Sausage and Kale Penne

The spicy chicken sausage is leaner than regular pork, and sautéed kale adds a ton of delicious fresh flavor. Find the recipe here, via Eat Drink Love.
Stephanie Day / Via eat-drink-love.com

The spicy chicken sausage is leaner than regular pork, and sautéed kale adds a ton of delicious fresh flavor.

Find the recipe here, via Eat Drink Love.

9. Fettuccine with Cauliflower Alfredo

This alfredo is made with pureed cauliflower instead of loads of heavy cream and butter, so it's much lighter and low-fat — but still creamy and delicious! Find the recipe here, via Pinch of Yum.
Lindsay / Via pinchofyum.com

This alfredo is made with pureed cauliflower instead of loads of heavy cream and butter, so it's much lighter and low-fat — but still creamy and delicious!

Find the recipe here, via Pinch of Yum.

10. Rotini and Pea Pesto with Sun-dried Tomato and Arugula

This plant-based pesto is delicious and comforting, but also naturally vegan and gluten-free. You can use regular rotini or a gluten-free pasta substitute if you want the whole dish to be Celiac-friendly! Find the recipe here via Minimalist Baker.
Dana Schultz / Via minimalistbaker.com

This plant-based pesto is delicious and comforting, but also naturally vegan and gluten-free. You can use regular rotini or a gluten-free pasta substitute if you want the whole dish to be Celiac-friendly!

Find the recipe here via Minimalist Baker.

11. Skinny Spaghetti and Meatballs

These meatballs are made of ground turkey and minced veggies, so you get all of the protein and nutrients with way less fat and sodium than regular meatballs. You can try whole wheat or gluten-free noodles to make it even healthier, but good old pasta is fine too. Find the recipe here, via Pinch of Yum.
Lindsay / Via pinchofyum.com

These meatballs are made of ground turkey and minced veggies, so you get all of the protein and nutrients with way less fat and sodium than regular meatballs. You can try whole wheat or gluten-free noodles to make it even healthier, but good old pasta is fine too.

Find the recipe here, via Pinch of Yum.

12. Penne Rosa With Veggies and Shrimp

This is way too creamy and delicious to only have 375 calories per serving. Keep it veggie by adding extra mushrooms, or add shrimp for a protein-packed meal. Find the recipe here, via Back to Her Roots.
Cassie Johnston / Via backtoherroots.com

This is way too creamy and delicious to only have 375 calories per serving. Keep it veggie by adding extra mushrooms, or add shrimp for a protein-packed meal.

Find the recipe here, via Back to Her Roots.

13. Spinach Artichoke Lasagna

http://cookieandkate.com/2015/spinach-artichoke-lasagna-recipe/
http://cookieandkate.com/2015/spinach-artichoke-lasagna-recipe/

It's basically spinach and artichoke dip (made with low-fat cottage cheese) inside lasagna, which is the best idea ever.

Find the recipe here, via Cookie and Kate.

14. Healthy Linguine With White Clam Sauce

This Italian classic is low-sodium, low-fat, and full of protein. Find the recipe here, via Skinny Mom.
Kristen Foltz / Skinny Mom / Via skinnymom.com

This Italian classic is low-sodium, low-fat, and full of protein.

Find the recipe here, via Skinny Mom.

15. Slow-Cooker Turkey Ragu With Linguine

This meaty, flavorful sauce is full of lean protein — and it's only 201 calories per serving before adding noods. Find the recipe here, via The Yummy Life.
Monica / Via theyummylife.com

This meaty, flavorful sauce is full of lean protein — and it's only 201 calories per serving before adding noods.

Find the recipe here, via The Yummy Life.

16. Pumpkin and Kale Rigatoni Pasta Bake

So comforting. So many veggies. So good. Find the recipe here, via MJ and Hungry Man.
Min Kwon / Via mjandhungryman.com

So comforting. So many veggies. So good.

Find the recipe here, via MJ and Hungry Man.

17. Spaghetti with Sautéed Chicken and Grape Tomatoes

This pasta dish is perfect for summer, and it's only about 330 calories per serving. Find the full recipe here, via Skinny Taste.
Gina Homolka / Via skinnytaste.com

This pasta dish is perfect for summer, and it's only about 330 calories per serving.

Find the full recipe here, via Skinny Taste.

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