If pasta is your favorite go-to meal, you’re in luck! Starting on Phase 2 of the South Beach Diet, you can enjoy a variety of healthy whole-wheat, whole-grain, or spelt pastas, or one of the newer varieties made from brown rice or quinoa. In fact, pasta can be a very nutritious meal as long as you choose the right accompaniments. Fresh vegetables, reduced-fat cheese, and/or a lean protein, such as turkey meatballs, shrimp or other shellfish, or grilled chicken or turkey breast, are all healthy options. Here are some delicious and healthy ways to prepare your favorite pasta dishes South Beach Diet-style:
Phase 1-friendly “pasta.”
An easy pasta swap is to halve and seed a 1-pound spaghetti squash, microwave or
bake it, and use a fork to scrape out the “spaghetti” strands. Serve with
tomato sauce and a little freshly grated Parmesan.
2, go for healthy pasta.
Prepare homemade pasta using whole-wheat flour instead of regular white flour.
Alternatively, you could purchase a healthy whole-wheat or whole-grain pasta,
like those mentioned above, at the supermarket. Unlike white pasta, which is
made from refined wheat flour and has had most of its fiber and other nutrients
removed, these newer pastas have their fiber intact and will help keep you
feeling fuller, longer. You can find many styles of whole-wheat or whole-grain
pasta, including penne, rigatoni, spaghetti, lasagna, linguine, fettuccine, and
elbow macaroni in most large supermarkets. Look for brands with 3 grams or more
of fiber per serving and stick with 1/2 cup cooked.
lean meats and seafood, tofu, or beans. Prepare homemade meatballs, using extra-lean ground beef or
ground turkey or chicken breast, which can be enjoyed on all Phases; add
whole-wheat bread crumbs, if you like, on Phase 2. Or grill a chicken breast,
cut it into half-inch cubes, and toss the cubes into your pasta dish. Seafood,
such as shrimp, clams, or grilled tuna, is also an excellent protein addition,
as is sautéed firm tofu or cooked beans.
grilled, roasted, or sautéed vegetables. In addition to protein, you can pair your pasta dish with
vegetables, such as asparagus, zucchini, spinach, tomatoes, summer squash,
broccoli, broccoli rabe, cauliflower, eggplant, and/or bell or hot peppers.
with tomato-, pesto-, or other vegetable-based sauces. Create your own tomato sauce, using fresh tomatoes or
tomato purée, tomato paste, extra-virgin olive oil, fresh or dried basil,
oregano, and thyme, and freshly ground black pepper. Or, if you prefer to
purchase canned or jarred tomato sauce at the supermarket, be sure to choose
reduced-sodium varieties with a minimum amount of added sugar (ideally 3 grams
of sugar, or less, per serving). You can make pesto using parsley, arugula, or the
traditional basil. And for a real change of pace, purée a cooked vegetable,
like broccoli or summer squash, with some lower-sodium broth, and serve over
pasta dish with reduced-fat cheese.
Look for reduced-fat cheeses, such as part-skim mozzarella or goat, or use
freshly grated Parmesan, Romano, or Asiago. You can also mix a dollop of
part-skim ricotta cheese into your sauce for a creamier