Mediterranean Pasta Recipe (Vegan and Gluten Free)

Mediterranean cooking style is one of the most recognized and loved around the globe. It has stood the test of time, and remained popular even against all the modern dietary trends. A diet rich in vegetables, healthy oils and fats, herbs and light condiments, it is naturally healthy, relatively low in calories, and palatable. It is also easily adoptable to many dietary styles - in this case, both VEGAN and GLUTEN-FREE. This Mediterranean pasta recipe is easy to make, rich in healthy colorful vegetables, perfectly seasoned and flavorful. Two ingredients that stand out and make this simple pasta recipe unique and delicious, are sun dried tomatoes and pine nuts. 

Flavorful, yet healthy mediterranean pasta recipe[/caption]

Coming from Croatia, I grew up eating a Mediterranean diet, even if we didn’t call it that. Pasta was one of the staples on our dinner table, and as I grew up and started cooking for myself, I discovered why it’s everyone’s favorite - it’s delicious, easy to make and incredibly quick to cook! However, I was very sad to realize, it’s not always a healthy choice. But I pride myself in ‘healthyfying’ any recipe, and pasta is no exception.

I chose a gluten-free, brown rice Callentani pasta as my base. Although I am not gluten intolerant, I see the negative effects of gluten, specially processed white bleached flour, and avoid it as much as possible. If not gluten-free, I definitely recommend whole wheat pasta for a healthy base.

My vegetables of choice were sweet spring green peas, corn, shredded raw zucchini, Israeli cucumbers, and flavor-rich sun dried tomatoes. You can always modify this and use whatever fresh vegetables you have in your fridge. Tomatoes are a must in this preparation to enhance that Mediterranean flare, and I prefer sun dried for two reasons - the enhanced, almost smokey taste, and health benefits as they are less acidic. 

[yumprint-recipe id=’4’]This recipe leaves your Mediterranean pasta pretty ‘naked’ - which means you can dress it up whichever way you’d like. From your favorite cheeses to sour cream, to flavored oils and spices, feel free to add in whatever suits you.

Mediterranean pasta topped with vegan sour cream[/caption]

Serve on top of greens or with a side salad, and enjoy!

This pasta is sure to satisfy any dinner guest, and it’s perfect just in time for Valentine’s Day!  Even if you are not a master chef, but would still like to cook a nice homemade meal for your date this romantic holiday, give this one a try - I promise, it won’t disappoint. 

Buon Appetito!