An easy One-Pot Cajun Pasta dinner recipe that’s allergy-free, gluten-free, and vegan! A healthy meatless dish filled with bell pepper, okra, tomatoes, and loads of flavorful spices and herbs all mixed together with your favorite pasta!
Kick the can and make this healthy recipe for the kids instead! Homemade Spaghetti O’s that are allergy-free, gluten-free, and vegan! A super easy lunch or dinner that’s kid-friendly and mom-approved!
Guys, SPAGHETTI O’S! An American childhood classic, am I right? Thick, creamy, tomatoey pasta in a can. All condensed with artificial colors, preservatives, flavors, BPA, sugars, salt, fat, and a bunch of other scary things! There’s 600mg of sodium and 11g of sugar in just a 1 cup serving! Ah! Not only should the terrible nutrition cause you fear, but the lack of food allergy safety (obviously). Every child should experience Spaghetti O’s, but we can clean it up a bit (or a lot) and make it so much better for all!Read More
A classic Italian dinner recipe made-over so everyone can enjoy. Gluten-Free Stuffed Shells with Vegan Almond Ricotta and a homemade sun-dried tomato sauce! A cozy family meal that leaves bellies full and hearts warm!
The two big pasta dishes in my Italian family were always ziti and stuffed shells, (never lasagna! Is that weird?). My mom tended to make ziti at home just as a normal dinner and my grandmother would be the one to make stuffed shells for special holidays/parties. No matter what form, pasta + cheese + sauce always seemed to be a favorite of everyone! So let’s just say with a diet free of gluten and dairy, I haven’t had stuffed shells in many…MANY years! (An Italian tragedy!)Read More
A simple and fresh pasta recipe for a light, gluten-free, and vegan meal. Red Lentil Spaghetti with Grilled Patty Pan Squash, tossed with diced tomatoes, fresh herbs, and spices. An easy dinner that will leave you feeling healthy and nourished with a dose of hidden protein!
I did make it a few times to a super small farmer’s market this summer. It became my mid-morning Sunday tradition to head into town, grab some coffee, and take a stroll over to the market. There were maybe 7 stands and only 2 of them had some fresh produce. After strolling around this little market a few times, I knew I had to at least buy one thing the next time I went (**reminder to bring some cash!**). They week I decided to buy (I’d wanted to get some garlic scapes, but they didn’t have any!), they had mounds and mound of zucchini, summer squashes, and patty pan.
Obviously, the patty pan squash caught my eye with its cute fat roundness (they were just begging me to buy them!). I had the intention of just buying one, only $.75! When I went over to pay for my one cute squash, the man told me to take a few more, they had too many. Did I have to pay? No! That’s all this super frugal girl needed to hear! Now loaded up on fresh farmer’s market patty pan and summer squash, I had the burden of the overabundance problem to deal with. Not too much of a burden for a recipe developer, eh?
I’ve been really into pasta dishes this summer and with all the fresh produce around, combing the two always leads to a lovely light meal. I also happened to have this lovely box of the new red lentil spaghetti from Explore Cuisine that I just had to try out! You know I love my legume-based pasta! This spaghetti taste like “the real deal” (i.e. non-gluten-free pasta!) It looked like normal pasta too (once cooked!). I’m totally a fan and totally suggest you try some yourself! It’s 73% red lentil flour and 27% brown rice flour, so not totally grain free, but super delicious!
The patty pan squash comes in to make this spaghetti not only high in protein, but light, fresh, and summery! I cut the patty pan into strips and lightly grilled them in my grill pan for just a few minutes to soften. Then I just threw the squash, some diced tomatoes, fresh parsley, and some spices into the cooked spaghetti and the meal was complete! I love keeping pasta dishes super simple so you can taste all the fresh ingredients without being muddled or hidden by a heavy sauce. According to the Italians, pasta was meant to be fresh and simple. They’re all about the “less is more” vibe when it comes to cooking. Fresh is best and simple is…delicious!
Red Lentil Spaghetti with Grilled Patty Pan Squash
- In a large pot, boil the spaghetti according to box directions (about 8-10 minutes), drain, rinse, and add the spaghetti back to the pot.
- Meanwhile, on a greased non-stick grill pan, lightly grill the patty pan squash strip for about 5 minutes, flip them halfway through.
- Add the grilled squash, diced tomatoes, parsley, and spices to the cooked spaghetti. Toss the pasta and serve.
See how delicious light and simple can be? I think this would make a lovely meal to serve up the last of your fresh summer produce, you agree? And come on, who ever says no to pasta? It’s like saying no to pancakes (okay, maybe a bit less tragic!) Now, let’s get cooking! Happy simple eating!
So tell me:
+ What’s your favorite thing to pick-up at the farmer’s market? I’m still crying that I never got my hands on garlic scapes!
+ What’s your go-to simple pasta dish?
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Nightshade sensitivities and allergies are becoming more talked about and mainstream. Not a top 8 allergen, but nightshade allergies can literally be toxic to some and cause a mass of inflammation throughout the body. A category of food to watch for those with autoimmune diseases as inflammation is one of the main reactions. First, nightshades are vegetables and fruits that contain saponins, alkaloids, and lectins. While most people are completely fine digesting these, some are not. Often connected to gluten or dairy intolerences, symptoms of a nightshade intolerance overlap. Symptoms can include: digestive distress (heartburn, nausea, diarrhea, gas, bloating, gurgling, IBS, leaky gut), mood swings, depression, headaches, joint pain or stiffness, muscle aches, insomnia, malabsorption (iron, calcium, minerals).
Problems with nightshades are mostly seen in Caucasians and is mostly genetic. If you continue to eat nightshades while you have an allergy/intolerance to them or you eat nightshades in abundance, the rick of developing leaky gut becomes prevalent. Nightshades contain alkaloids (poisonous in large amounts) and saponins which can cause tiny tears in your digestive tracks tissue lining. Lectins can also cause stomach problems, but only in large amounts. Again, most people are fine, but if you only eat nightshades you may end up with leaky gut which can progress to other inflammatory diseases.
These chemicals in nightshades are so similarly linked to the reactions that gluten and dairy can cause, thus, those with digestive issues relating to those foods and continue to have stomach issues, may want to take a look at the amount of nightshades they are eating. Autoimmune diseases like celiac, arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, type 1 diabetes, crohn’s disease (or colitis), grave’s disease, multiple sclerosis, hashimoto’s disease, and lupus, may find additional relief from going nightshade free. So which food should you actually avoid?
So you see the big obvious foods are eggplant, tomatoes, and peppers! No red sauce for you! Also no white potatoes (i.e. Russet, red, baking, fingerling, etc.). However, all sweet potatoes and yams are okay! Load up on the Japanese! It’s also a misconception that peppercorn (i.e. black or white pepper, the spices) are a no-no. However, they are NOT nightshades.Read More