I’ve been looking for some new ideas for quick dinners or easy light lunches, and the latest issue of Everyday Food magazine included a recipe for whole wheat pasta salad with chicken, raisins and almonds that I just had to try. I swapped spinach and garbanzo beans for chicken and raisins and used brown rice pasta instead of whole wheat. I made two servings last night – one for dinner and one for lunch today – and the end result was very creamy, tangy and filling; the meal overall took a little less than 40 minutes to prepare which was awesome. The lemon and Greek-style yogurt I used complemented each other so well, and has left me dreaming of future variations to try, including substituting parsley for fresh mint, or even reinventing it with angel hair, chicken or shrimp, and cherry or grape tomatoes. Below is the recipe as it appears in the magazine – feel free to put your own spin on it.
(wish the pics were a bit better – I just got another new phone so I’m still trying to figure it all out!)
Pasta Salad with Chicken, Raisins, and Almonds
adapted from Everyday Food
serves 4; prep time 15 min; total time 25 min.
- course salt & ground pepper
- 8 ounces whole wheat penne rigate (or other short pasta)
- 2 1/2 cups cooked shredded chicken
- 1 cup plain low-fat yogurt
- 1/2 cup golden raisins (optional)
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons toasted almonds, coarsely chopped
- 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest, plus 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta until al dente. Reserve 1/4 cup of pasta water. Drain pasta, then rinse under cold water to stop the cooking.
2. In a large bowl, stir together pasta, chicken, yogurt, raisins (if using), parsley, almonds, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Thin sauce with pasta water if needed. Season with salt and pepper. (To store, refrigerate, up to 1 day.)
nutritionals: per serving: 484 calories, 9.9 g fat (2.3 g sat fat), 56.4 g protein, 41.3 g carb, 7.8 g fiber