Monday, September 24, 2018

Explore Cuisine: Pasta Primavera Marinara

Quick note: This is a sponsored post, thanks to my friends at Explore Cuisine — makers of organic protein-packed pastas made from beans, lentils, rice and peas. I don’t do a lot of sponsored posts, generally opting instead for more objective review posts where I can say whatever I want. But when I do agree to work with a company on a sponsored post, you can trust that it’s a company I REALLY believe and support. #UseYourNoodle

Time is precious, especially these days when I’m running from work to yoga and then trying to scarf down dinner and be in bed by 9:30 pm. Since I’m still recovering from a stress fracture in my left foot, I’ve traded in my morning runs for spinning classes at the gym. And they all start at 5:30 am! So I’m getting up at 4:30 these days.

All that is to say, I like a quick meal. And sure, I could just heat up a frozen veggie burger and throw some potatoes in the air fryer and have dinner on the table in 15 minutes. Sometimes, that’s exactly what I do. But lately, I’ve been trying to focus on getting more veggies into my diet, so a quick meal that’s also filled with nutrition is a bonus.

So that’s the focus with today’s Explore Cuisine recipe post. I used their Edamame Spaghetti to create a fast and easy Pasta Primavera Marinara. And I didn’t even have to include any traditional protein source, like beans or tempeh, because the protein is IN THE PASTA! Explore Cuisine’s Edamame Spaghetti is packed with 24 grams of protein per serving. And there’s just one ingredient: edamame. This is definitely the smarter way to pasta!

As for texture, the pasta is just a little softer than a whole wheat noodle, but it still has a firm al dente bite. And I actually prefer its texture over traditional pastas. Topped with sauteed veggies and jarred marinara, this made a perfect, simple dinner.

One quick tip: I pre-chopped my veggies the night before and placed them in the fridge. That meant my dinner came together in minutes! You can also save time by purchasing a frozen Italian vegetable mix. I’d recommend using about 4-5 cups of frozen, mixed veggies for this meal if you’re going that route.

Without further ado, here’s the recipe!

Pasta Primavera Marinara
Yields 3-4 servings

1 box Explore Cuisine Edamame Spaghetti
1/2 red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup baby carrots, cut in half horizontally
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 zucchini, sliced and quartered
1 cup broccoli florets
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 cup cherry tomatoes
2 cups jarred marinara (any flavor)
Vegan parmesan, to taste (optional)

Cook the spaghetti according to package instructions. Set aside.

Simmer the marinara in a saucepan, until heated through, while the veggies cook (instructions follow). 

Add the onion, garlic, and carrot to a large skillet. Add just enough water to coat the pan. Heat on medium heat for 5 minutes or until onion becomes tender. Add a few splashes of water if it begins to dry up.

Add the remaining veggies (except tomatoes), herbs, and spices. Saute for 10 more minutes or until all veggies are tender. Add the tomatoes, and saute another 3 minutes or until they begin to blister. You may need to check periodically for water and add more as needed. In the end, the veggies should be soft and the water absorbed. You don’t need much water, just a few tablespoons to keep the pan wet. 

Once the veggies are done, create your pasta bowl by layering noodles, the desired amount of marinara, and as many sauteed veggies as you want. Top with vegan parm if desired.


Sarah said...

That pasta primavera is GORGEOUS. The veggies look so fresh and the pasta sounds really yummy!

Also, another Trader Joe's recommendation: try the Cornbread chips!!! They are seasonal so only available for a little while but they are AMAZING!

Unknown said...

Whaaattt??? Seriously made from just edamame? That’s totally crazy- and really amazing high protein and fiber. I’ll certainly add these to my next amazon order, haven’t seen this one in stores near me.
I’m totally impressed you can go to bed and get up so early! I would do a 6:30 am spin class which was rough but i never regretted it.
Thanks for being so selective about working with sponsors, i feel like the sponsored posts you do are authentic and genuinely products you would buy otherwise