Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta with Broccoli and Artichokes

Serve this pasta salad warm or cold, it works both ways! Loaded with veggies and tossed in a flavorful sun-dried tomato pesto, this pasta is sure to be a crowd-pleaser. 

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Springtime and sunshine immediately bring me to dreams of pasta salad, all day every day. As per usual, I bring pasta any chance I get to family gatherings, and love making pasta for weeknight meals. Loading up pasta dishes with veggies is a perfect and flavorful way to make them nutritious and filling.

There are so many choices for pastas that are healthier than the standard versions, so use whatever type of pasta works for your family … from whole wheat, to chickpea, to lentil pasta. Some gluten-free pastas offer the additional benefit of protein.

When it comes to pasta shapes, everyone has their favorites: mine tend to be rotini, penne, bowties, linguini and rigatoni … not necessarily in that order. For this recipe, use your own favorite shape, but I find that rotini works well here because the dressing does a great job of adhering to the nooks and crevices of this pasta shape.

For this recipe, I use sun-dried tomatoes that are not jarred in oil. The marinated artichokes will come in some oil, and we are adding olive oil. So, no need for olive overkill here.

This dish is highly customizable in that you can add your favorite vegetable combination to pasta with the sun-dried tomato dressing. The broccoli and marinated artichoke combination used here is super colorful and tasty.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb. pasta
  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 T nutritional yeast
  • 1 T dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes, sliced in half lengthwise
  • 3 cups trimmed and steamed broccoli florets
  • 1.5 cups drained marinated artichoke hearts, chopped
  • 2 T chopped fresh basil
  • 2 T chopped flat-leaf parsley

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Cook pasta in salted water. Drain, and set aside.
  2. While pasta is cooking, add olive oil, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, and sun-dried tomatoes to a food processor and blend until nearly smooth.
  3. Transfer this mixture to a large mixing bowl and add dried oregano, dried basil, garlic powder, salt and pepper and whisk together.
  4. Add remaining ingredients, and gently toss to combine. Add a small amount of pasta cooking water. Taste for seasoning.
  5. If desired, squeeze more lemon juice and drizzle with a small amount of olive oil just before serving.

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