A full-of-flavor, super easy pesto pasta without the half ton of oil, calories and fat that usually come with it! Pesto! I mean, Presto! A delicious, healthy meal!
I LOVE pesto, who’s with me?!! For the sake of this post, I’m going to pretend that I heard lots of loud, boisterous cheering from all of you because pesto is perfection. Seriously, what’s not to love? You combine a handful of amazing ingredients that you then use to coat pasta. Hmm… pasta.
Pasta is a little bit tricky on the 21 Day Fix. Some of us can only have a total of 1 cup of “yellows*” in a whole day… which doesn’t feel like all that much. I don’t know about you, but I need pasta in my life. The trick is to bulk it up with protein and veggies and cover it with a healthy sauce. I’m getting pretty good at this trick, have you checked out my 21 Day Fix Broccoli Mac & Cheese? Because it’s ridiculous.
I’ve had a vague idea for this pasta in the back of my mind for a while now. I had a chicken dish once from Bucca Di Beppo that was served on top of a pesto cream sauce and I’ve been hooked on that idea ever since. Anyway, I recently ran out of an important ingredient that I had needed for dinner that night, so instead of going out and getting said ingredient (which probably would’ve taken a good 45 minutes to an hour due to the location of the nearest grocery store) I looked around in my fridge and realized that I had all of the ingredients on hand to make this instead! Needless to say, I was pretty excited… it turned out so well I knew you guys would love it! Especially since you all love pesto. I heard you cheering, don’t forget.
I used zucchini in this recipe because that’s what I had on hand the first time that I made it and we all loved it, but feel free to add whatever veggies you like! I’ll be honest, I also kind of liked that everything was green… I guess I’m weird like that. Btw, if you left out the chicken and doubled up on the veggies, I think this would make an awesome side dish, too. Just some food for thought 🙂 Have a great day, and go get a workout in! You deserve it!
*”Yellows” are what 21 Day Fixers refer to as carbs though we still get plenty of fruits and veggies (which also have carbs) on top of these ones – I just want to be clear that the 21 Day Fix isn’t some crazy low-carb diet or something. 😉
**Update: There’s been a correction to the container equivalents in this recipe. The original stated each serving as having 1 red, that’s incorrect, each serving has 1/2 of a red. Sorry for the confusion!
- 1 1/2 cups 2% or low-fat cottage cheese
- 1/2 cup 1% plain Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1 cup fresh basil, packed
- 2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
- 8 large cloves of garlic, minced
- 4 cups zucchini, chopped
- 3 cups cooked chopped chicken
- 6 cups cooked whole wheat penne pasta
- 1 cup pecorino romano or parmesan, grated
- salt and pepper, to season
- In a blender, blend together the cottage cheese and Greek yogurt until completely smooth. Add in the basil and the pine nuts and blend again just until you can see that the basil is finely chopped and all is fully combined (you don't want to over-blend). Set aside.
- In a large non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil to medium-high heat. Add the garlic and the zucchini and cook until the zucchini softens. To the skillet, add the pasta, chicken, sauce mixture and pecorino and heat through. Salt and pepper to season then serve.
21 Day Fix Container Equivalents: 1 1/2 YELLOW, 1/2 RED, 1/2 GREEN, 1/2 BLUE, 1 TSP
Weight Watchers Freestyle Points: 7
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1 1/4 cups per serving
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 392Total Fat: 13g