Few foods are as fast, easy and versatile as pasta. And what better to make a complete meal than by combining pasta with produce! Consider there are hundreds of pasta shapes to choose from, dry pasta as well as filled, fresh and frozen pasta like tortellini, ravioli, cavatelli and dozens more. And all of these pair with a myriad of different veggies and veggie-packed sauces for endless convenient and simple dinner solutions in under 20 minutes! It also lends itself to easy clean ups with imaginative one-pot meals and one-bowl salads.

Here are three creative ways pasta and produce can streamline your menu:

  1. Buy Pre-Cut Veggies
    Not only do pre-cut vegetables save precious prep time they also ensure that you are getting vegetables at the peak of freshness. Many of them also contain a blend of different ingredients – peppers, onions and zucchini – to ensure you can prepare a quick, flavorful meal in minutes. Simply sauté the vegetables, cook up the pasta and toss with garlic, olive oil and a handful of fresh herbs for a satisfying and delicious meal like  Tagliatelli with Tomatoes and Artichokes.  
  2. Pop Open A Can
    Canned vegetables and canned beans are perfect pasta partners on busy days and lend to easy clean up. The most popular canned vegetables – sweet corn, sweet peas and green beans – pair well with pasta. Consider this super-fast pasta salad, Gemmi with Black Beans and Corn. If sodium is a concern, drain and rinse the vegetables or beans before adding to pasta.
  3. Pair With Pantry Staples
    Pantry and refrigerator staples are an easy win for pasta dishes. Favorite pasta partners include pesto, nuts, black olives, tuna, roasted peppers, salsa, anything you have on hand will do. For quick creative pantry ideas – check out these healthy pantry pasta go-togethers on the Share the Pasta

Pasta dishes area easy to prep ahead of time, and sometimes even taste better the next day. To make things even easier, use the same water you used to boil the pasta to cook the vegetables. Simply drop the vegetables in for a few minutes, toss with pasta and top with olive oil and garlic. Whether feeding a family of 10 or just a party of one, pasta pleases everyone. Check out Perfect Pasta Pairings for more ideas.

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