Pasta, with its rich culinary history and comfort food taste, is an easy dinnertime win. Whether it’s penne alla vodka, creamy fettuccine Alfredo, or spaghetti bolognese, these dishes are undeniably delicious but can sometimes lean towards the indulgent side. However, what if there was a way to enjoy your favorite pasta dishes while also nourishing your body?
As it turns out, you can, and Giada De Laurentiis shares her top four tips to help us all make our favorite pasta dishes healthier. Giada’s tips will not only help transform those go-to classic pasta dishes into wholesome meals, but these tips prove that we can still enjoy some of our favorite meals without guilt.
Turn Your Favorite Pasta Dish Into a Healthy Meal With Giada’s Top Four Tips
Tip #1: Use Minimally Processed Pasta
Quality matters when it comes to selecting your pasta. One of Giada’s top tips for a healthier pasta night is to avoid using highly processed pasta, and instead opt for something that’s been as minimally processed as possible. Pasta made with minimally processed Italian wheat is naturally rich in iron, potassium, and B vitamins, and is easier to digest without spiking your blood sugar.
Giadzy pasta by Giada De Laurentiis is a must-try when it comes to looking for high-quality pasta that you can feel good about serving on pasta night. Giadzy pasta is crafted in Abruzzo from pure mountain spring water and organic locally grown semolina. This pasta is made using traditional techniques and cut on 100-year-old bronze dies for the perfect al dente bite every time. It’s the answer to all of your pasta needs!
Tip #2: Add a Drizzle of Olive Oil After Cooking
Olive oil, especially extra-virgin olive oil, is known for its health benefits, primarily thanks to its high content of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats and antioxidative compounds. However, when olive oil is exposed to high temperatures during cooking, there is a potential that some of these beneficial compounds will start to degrade.
One of Giada’s top tips for making your favorite pasta dish healthier is adding your drizzle of extra virgin olive oil after cooking. This helps preserve all of those good-for-you nutrients to maximize the oil’s health benefits and add a delicious burst of flavor. Consider trying this Fratepietro oil — it’s the ultimate high-quality, versatile olive oil that’s perfect for finishing dishes.
Tip #3: Add Extra Veggies
To make pasta night healthy, one of Giada’s simple but genius tips is to pack in extra veggies. A simple way to do this is to blend them into your tomato sauce. Carrots are a particularly good option as they add a deliciously sweet flavor to your sauce. You can also easily add extra vegetables to a bolognese, like this vegetable bolognese dish, and pair versatile vegetables like zucchini, eggplant, mushrooms, and artichokes.
Tip #4: Eat The Way Italians Do
When serving up your pasta dish, Giada’s tip is to practice portion control the way Italians do. Serve yourself a small portion of pasta alongside a protein dish, rather than consuming just a big bowl of pasta. By adding protein to your pasta meal, you’ll help support satiety, as protein is the most filling macronutrient, making it less likely that you’ll overeat. This helps keep your pasta serving size in check!
Pasta Night Made Healthy
Are you ready to turn your favorite pasta dishes into healthy and nourishing meals? With Giada’s four tips, pasta night just got healthy! From choosing a high-quality pasta to blending vegetables into your sauce, adding more protein, and holding the olive oil drizzle until you’re plating up your dish, pasta night has never been more delicious.
If you want even more cooking inspiration from Giada De Laurentiis, head to the FitOn app, where we showcase some of her favorite Mediterranean-style meals.