With summer winding down, my goal is to enjoy as many backyard barbecues as possible. And nothing completes a summer meal like a freshly tossed side of pasta salad decorated with the season’s best produce. But this dish isn’t your ordinary potluck headliner. This summer staple is jam-packed with fiber and omega-3s, which means there is no need for guilt when you pile it onto your plate.
During this last week, I have enjoyed a variety of clean meals. Everything from smoothies, to stir fry, to tacos, all cleaned up and made deliciously healthy. But this dish is by far my favorite. The homemade vinaigrette, the whole-grain pasta, the fresh summer veggies…it’s a match made in heaven.
1 16 oz pkg whole-grain penne pasta
1 yellow summer squash, quartered and sliced
1 zucchini, quartered and sliced
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
1/8 red onion, cut into thin 1-inch-long slices
1/2 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp flaxseed oil
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp pure maple syrup
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/8 tsp kosher salt
1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse under cool water.
2. Meanwhile, in a blander, blend vinaigrette ingredients and 2 tbsp water. (Alternatively, which ingredients until blended).
3. Transfer pasta to a large bowl and add squash, zucchini, tomatoes, onion, basil and vinaigrette and toss to combine. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until chilled, up to 1 day.
Recipe from Clean Eating
Being able to enjoy satisfying summertime foods without excess calories or processed junk, makes me a clean eating believer. Making simple, small changes to your favorite meals can make a huge difference in your life. Remember, a journey of a thousand miles starts with one step. Or in my case, 2 cups of pasta salad :)