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Healthy Pasta Salad Recipes

Beautiful Pasta Salads, that are not Only Healthy, but Tasty, Too!


Hungry Girl's BBQ Veggie Pasta Salad

Nothing says summer quite like pasta salad. It’s cool, refreshing and ever so tasty. And it’s convenient. You can make it the day before your picnic or event, so there’s no last minute rushing around. No wonder it’s such a favorite!

Then there’s the downside. Mayonnaise and pasta aren’t good for anyone’s waistline. Reduced-fat mayo helps, but in my opinion, doesn’t taste nearly as good.

Here are two recipes that solve this problem. Both offer creative and simple ways to cut down on the fat while adding interesting flavors and textures.

It’s almost summer, a.k.a. pasta salad season! Whip up one or two of these rockin’ recipes, and prepare to be the most popular person at the potluck…

BBQ Veggie Pasta Salad
1/6th of recipe (about 1 cup): 147 calories, 2.5g fat, 285mg sodium, 27g carbs, 3.5g fiber, 5.5g sugars, 6g protein — PointsPlus® value 4*

Unconventional yet amazing! This BBQ-ranch pasta salad is super-sized with grilled veggies and flavored with feta cheese. It’s a complete crowd-pleaser…

4 1/2 oz. (about 1 3/4 cups) uncooked high-fiber rotini pasta
1 red bell pepper, halved lengthwise, stem and seeds removed
1 red onion, ends removed, cut into 1/2-inch slices (rings intact)
1 zucchini, stem end removed, halved lengthwise
1 ear corn, husk removed
1/2 cup crumbled reduced-fat feta cheese
1/4 cup chopped scallions
1/4 cup fat-free ranch dressing
2 tbsp. BBQ sauce with 45 calories or less per 2-tbsp. serving

Cook pasta in a medium pot per package instructions, about 8 minutes. Drain and transfer to a large bowl.

Bring a grill sprayed with nonstick spray to medium heat. Place pepper halves, onion slices (rings intact), zucchini halves, and ear of corn on the grill. Grill for 6 minutes with the grill cover down, rotating corn halfway through.

Flip veggies. With the grill cover down, grill until fully cooked and blackened, about 6 more minutes, rotating corn halfway through.

Chop veggies and remove corn kernels from the ear. Add to the large bowl. Add feta cheese and scallions, and lightly toss to mix.

In a small bowl, mix ranch dressing with BBQ sauce. Add to the large bowl and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour. Enjoy!



Hungry Girl's Zucchini-Ribbon Salad

Zucchini-Ribbon Salad
1/4th of recipe (about 1 cup): 79 calories, 3g fat, 285mg sodium, 9.5g carbs, 2.5g fiber, 5g sugars, 5.5g protein — PointsPlus® value 2*

This one takes the “pasta” out of “pasta salad”… Zucchini is a surprisingly amazing swap for noodles! The fantastic flavor of this lightened-up recipe will make you forget that pasta ever existed. (Well, at least temporarily.)

2 large zucchini, ends removed
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup crumbled reduced-fat feta cheese
1/3 cup finely chopped red onion
2 tbsp. fat-free Italian dressing

Use a veggie peeler to peel zucchini lengthwise into super-thin strips; rotate zucchini after each strip to yield a width similar to fettuccine. Place in a large bowl.

Add all remaining ingredients. Gently toss to mix. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour. Eat up!


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