Contributing Author: MS Nutrition & Integrative Health student, Reanetta Perkins
Ingredients for the best Bowtie Pasta Salad with Creamy Avocado Vinaigrette:
- 4-6 quarts water
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 8 oz whole wheat bowtie (farfalle) pasta
- 1 ea ripe avocado
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp lemon zest (or zest from one lemon)
- 1 ea lemon, juiced
- 1 ea garlic clove
- Salt & pepper, to taste
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oi
- 1/2 cup red onion, sliced
- 1/2 cup yellow or orange bell pepper, sliced
- 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
- 2 cups baby spinach, packed
- 2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
Method of Prep:
- In a large pot, bring water and 1 tsp salt to a rolling boil over high heat. Add pasta to boiling water and stir gently. Bring water back to a boil and cook pasta for 9 minutes or according to the directions on the package.
- Meanwhile, add avocado, apple cider vinegar, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper, and olive oil to a food processor and blend until smooth and creamy. Alternatively, add all ingredients to a medium mixing bowl and whisk until smooth. Taste the mixture and adjust the flavor as needed with a pinch of salt, pepper, or acid.
- Remove pasta from heat and drain. Place pasta into a large serving bowl.
- Add the onion, bell pepper, and avocado dressing to the pasta and stir.
- Add the tomato and spinach and mix well.
- Garnish with fresh basil. Enjoy!
Health Benefits of the Best Bowtie Pasta Salad with Creamy Avocado Vinaigrette:
Avocado – This fruit is high in many vitamins and minerals including potassium, a mineral that aids in regulating blood pressure and the nervous system function. Avocados are also high in vitamin B6, an important vitamin for the immune system. Avocados are high in healthy, monounsaturated fats and in fiber. Healthy fats and fiber help balance blood sugar and help you feel full.
Spinach – This vegetable is high in vitamin C, known to support the immune system. Spinach also contains folate, an important vitamin for red blood cells and the nervous system. Spinach has been referred to as a “superfood” for its phytonutrients, zeaxanthin and carotenoids. Antioxidants found in spinach help fight free radicals and reduce oxidative damage in the body.