While some of my recipes stem from wonderful restaurant dishes, others are created out of disappointment. Take for example this vegetable pasta dish. I had gone to a favorite restaurant of mine, ordered their seasonal veg-friendly pasta, and received one of the most disappointing meals I’ve had in some time. The ratio of pasta to vegetables sat somewhere around 10:1 and there was no sauce. None. I’m not one for overly sauce pasta but this took that to an extreme.
And so, I set out to right that pasta dish with an easy summer recipe. I love tossing all the summer vegetables into a pan- it’s hard to mess it up. Add to that a few chickpeas and enough cream/veg-friendly parmesan and you have yourself a meal. Use what you have on hand, swap the pasta for grains, or toss in some homemade pesto: everything is fair-game in this vegetable pasta!
Summer Vegetable Pasta with Chickpeas
A hearty summer pasta that uses chickpeas to bulk up the recipe and a bit of heavy cream and parmesan to create a simple sauce.
- 1/2 medium yellow onion
- 1 small to medium zucchini
- 5 to 6 small sweet peppers
- 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes
- 4 ounces pasta
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup cooked chickpeas (drained and rinsed if using canned)
- 1/4 cup lightly packed basil, julienned
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup lightly packed parmesan
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Prepare the vegetables: dice the onion and zucchini into similar sized pieces and slice the smaller peppers into rings. Slice the tomatoes in half. Start the pasta cooking and cook until al dente.
- Heat a large, high-sided skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil, followed by the vegetables. Saute until the vegetables are tender and browning, stirring occasionally; 8 to 10 minutes. Add in the chickpeas and basil, cooking and stirring until the chickpeas are warm.
- Add in the pasta as well as the heavy cream, parmesan, salt and pepper. Stir to coat the noodles and melt the parmesan. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
by Erin Alderson
Tips & Tricks: You could use smaller pasta, like the penne I used, or you could make this dish with a longer noodle, like spaghetti.
Nutrition: see the information.
|Amount Per Serving||As Served|
|Calories 362 Calories from fat|
|% Daily Value|
|Total Fat 14.6||22%|
|Saturated Fat 6.5||33%|
|Dietary Fiber 7.5||30%|
Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs:
|Total Fat||Less than||65g|
|Sat Fat||Less than||25g|
Step by Step
Summer Vegetable Pasta
This is about as generic as a pasta dish comes, but I did that on purpose. Summer produce is a bit easier to work with than other seasonal produce because most of the time it’s best barely cooked and pairs well with so many different grains and pasta recipes.
Pesto: Skip the basil and stir in a hefty spoonful of pesto.
Grains: Not a pasta fan? Make the vegetables as written then add in the cream and cheese without the pasta. Use the mixture to top a grain bowl.
Vegan: The flavors in this pasta work well with a nut cream. I like using almond with the summer flavors but cashew would work well.
Chickpeas are always in my pantry. They make a quick meal, like these turmeric chickpeas, but can also serve as a great dip, deli sandwich, or addition to soup. They are versatile and a power boost to any meal.