These 30 irresistible, healthy pasta recipes are simple and perfect for when you’re craving carbs but don’t want to feel weighed down.
I’m a proud pasta lover, but when warmer weather hits, I find myself trading in noodles cloaked in rich cream (like my creamy lemon pasta with ham and peas) and meaty red sauces (like my short ribs fettuccine) for lighter, simply-sauced dishes with fewer calories and big flavors.
These 30 lighter pastas highlight seasonal veggies like asparagus, peas, and greens, and are seasoned with fresh herbs, garlic, and lemon. Plus, you can throw many of them together in 30 minutes or less, making them totally weeknight-friendly. And so without further ado, here are 30 healthy pasta recipes to make any time.
This perfectly garlicky, always delicious and popular seafood dish gets a healthy makeover with a mix of zucchini noodles and whole wheat linguini, and it’s also made with a lot less butter (your hips will thank you).
from With Food + Love
This one pot pasta with spring veggies and fresh herbs, and a bright lemon vinaigrette is one you’re going to want on repeat all spring and summer-long.
from Billy Parisi
The recipe calls for from-scratch pasta and features a recipe, but let’s be real, who has time for that on a weeknight? The store-bought stuff does the trick and salty prosciutto, tender spears of asparagus, mushrooms, and creamy ricotta and burrata all work together to make this pasta next-level good.
from Vanilla and Bean
Garlicky toasted breadcrumbs give this vegetarian pasta a crunchy bite, and capers, lemon, and red pepper flakes make it sing with flavor.
from A Thought for Food
The only real way to improve upon carbonara is to give it a fresh spring makeover, with asparagus and peas, and this one keeps it extra light (and just as delicious) without the meat.
This vegetarian Mediterranean orzo pasta salad with crunchy vegetables and spinach, briny olives, and feta cheese makes a healthy, easy-to-make, meal-prepped meal or flavorful pasta salad side.
from Two Peas and Their Pod
You just need 7 ingredients and 30 minutes to make this dreamy rigatoni with zesty lemon, peppery arugula, and gooey burrata.
from Healthy Seasonal Recipes
Finally, an alfredo our appetites and health can agree on. This dish boasts just 300 calories per serving, but you’d never know it, thanks to some smart (and equally delicious) ingredient swaps.
from Show me the Yummy
A garlic and herb-flavored goat cheese gives these veggie-loaded pasta shells a wonderfully creamy sauce, and not only is everything made in one pot, it’s ready in under 30 minutes. As Ina would say, how easy is that?
April 10: Very Green Spring Pasta
Parsnips and Pastries
Asparagus, rainbow chard, zucchini, peas, and plenty of fresh herbs make up this spaghetti in a white wine and lemon parmesan sauce both light and hearty.
from How Sweet Eats
You don’t need a ton of ingredients to make a damn fine pasta, and this one is proof. Simply take some whole wheat farfalle, toss it with a garlicky, red wine and feta vinaigrette, a bunch of arugula, toasted pine nuts, and a bit more crumbled feta for good measure, and voila!
from Our Salty Kitchen
This vegetarian pasta is packed with a host of fresh herbs, veggies, and dollops of zesty lemon-mint ricotta, and perfectly captures the essence of spring.
from The Cooking Jar
There’s just something so perfect about the marriage of garlic, lemon, capers, and fresh basil, especially when rigatoni, flaky salmon, and parmesan are added to the mix. And pssst, this one only takes 30 minutes.
from Gimme Some Oven
This no-frills pasta is so easy, you could practically make it in your sleep! With just 5 ingredients (olive oil or butter, linguini, garlic, arugula, and parmesan, it’s full of flavor, inexpensive, and ready in under 30 minutes. But, if you really wanna gild the lily, you probably won’t regret adding toasted pine nuts.
from Little Broken
This white lasagna is a refreshing respite from its beefy red sauce counterpart. Filled with a milk-based parmesan sauce, chicken, mushrooms, and spinach, and no boil noodles (hallelujah), it totally hits the spot.
from Well and Full
Tender little pillows of gnocchi are cloaked in a zippy, mustardy arugula pesto and served with crisp snow peas or snap peas and fresh chives in this gloriously green dish.
from Natasha’s Kitchen
This quick and easy 30-minute linguini swaps heavy cream for whole milk with equally creamy results! It’s studded with chicken, green onions, mushrooms, and plenty of spinach!
Leftover salmon gets a recipe remake with bowtie pasta, fresh asparagus, and dill in this super simple Parmesan cream sauce that makes meal prep a breeze. This salmon pasta couldn’t be easier to make!
19. Jade Noodles
from Feasting at Home
This gorgeous bowl of vibrant is fit for a green goddess, and features an abundance of emerald veggies, tofu, and soba noodles, all tossed in a tangy ginger-sesame dressing.
This one pot primavera might as well be spring’s food mascot. It’s chock-full of fresh, seasonal veggies and herbs, and is made healthier with almond milk subbing in for the cream and butter. Full of amazing flavor, thanks to garlic, parmesan, lemon, thyme, and dill, it’s a creamy, dreamy pasta win!
from The Baker Chick
This healthier take on mac and cheese is one you can feel good about. Perfectly creamy and cozy, but made with a whole head of cauliflower (and a lot less butter), this is the perfect way to get your mac and cheese fix without the guilt. Plus, the toasted Panko topping gives it a nice crispy crunch that totally seals the deal.
Looking for an easy ground turkey recipe? This one-pot pasta comes together in just 30 minutes and is packed with good-for-you ingredients like spinach, tomatoes, and ground turkey!
from Lexi’s Clean Kitchen
This gluten-free, crowd-pleasing pasta with chicken sausage, spinach, broccoli, and asparagus is teeming with delicious flavors and comes together in one pot, and in just 30 minutes.
Busy weeknights call for simple recipes that can be pulled together in a flash, and nothing’s simpler than a basic, homemade basil pesto pasta recipe that even a kid can make and clean up after too.
This creamy, easy BLT pasta salad recipe is loaded with tomatoes, arugula, and avocado, plus crispy bacon that’s all topped with a super simple Ranch-style dressing made healthier with a combo of Greek yogurt and mayo.
from The Full Helping
Is it a salad, is it a pasta? It doesn’t matter, this dish packs mega flavor, it’s awesome for a hit potluck dish, or a light and healthy weeknight supper. It’s loaded with Mediterranean ingredients like marinated artichoke hearts, olive oil, and lemon, and also features orzo, asparagus, peas, chickpeas, and fresh parsley and dill.
from Flourishing Foodie
Spaghetti is tossed with an easy, homemade walnut basil pesto and topped with florets of caramelized cauliflower, fresh snap peas, and avocado, for a winning combination that won’t weigh you down.
Lean chicken sausage, broccoli, orecchiette, plenty of garlic, and pecorino come together for an easy and flavorful weeknight dinner you can throw together in no time.
With the addition of whole wheat noodles, this classic Mediterranean Greek pasta salad with artichokes and olives just got a healthy upgrade.
from How Sweet Eats
With roasted spring veggies, ribbons of fettuccine, and a light, but creamy goat cheese sauce, how could you say no to this bright bowl of goodness?
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BLT Pasta Salad with Avocado
- 1 pound short pasta noodles (such as shells, farfalle, cavatappi)
- 1 pound bacon
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes , sliced in half
- 2 cups arugula leaves
- 1 avocado , chopped
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (low-fat or full-fat)
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons white vinegar
- 1 tablespoon fresh minced chives
- 1 tablespoon fresh minced flat leaf parsley
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Boil the pasta in a large pot of salted water according to package directions just until al denté and still a bit firm. Rinse under cool water and drain well. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
- While the pasta is cooking, chop the bacon into 1/2″ pieces and cook in a large skillet over medium heat until desired crispness. Transfer the cooked bacon to a plate topped with a paper towel to drain well.
- Add the bacon, tomato, arugula, avocado and red onion to the pasta.
- In a small bowl, mix the Greek yogurt, mayonnaise, vinegar, chives, garlic powder, kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Thin with milk, water or buttermilk if desired.
- Drizzle the dressing over the pasta and gently toss. Taste for seasoning. Serve chilled.
- Note: If you’re out of ingredients or out of time to make the easy homemade dressing, feel free to use a quality bottled Ranch dressing instead.
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