Whereas hearty soups often rule our dinner table during the fall and winter, one of my favorite dishes to make in the spring and summer are light and refreshing pasta salads!
By using fresh, seasonal veggies, you can make an easy, delicious dish that can serve as a snack, side dish or even light dinner if you add a little bit of meat.
You can whip up this simple snap pea and pasta salad in a matter of minutes!
Simple Sugar Snap Pea Pasta Salad
- 8 oz. whole wheat or brown rice (GF) pasta (I usually use spirals or penne.)
- 8 oz. sugar snap peas OR snow peas, trimmed
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 Tbsp. butter OR coconut oil (for DF)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- zest of 1 lemon
- 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
- 12 oz. shrimp or other meat of choice (optional)*
- 1-2 Tbsp. olive oil, butter or coconut oil to saute shrimp
- crumbled goat cheese, to taste (leave off for DF)
- red pepper flakes, to taste
- Boil the pasta in a large pot. Add peas 3 minutes before pasta is ready. Drain.
- If using shrimp, saute in butter, olive oil or coconut oil in separate pan. Set aside.
- Heat oil and butter over medium heat in large pot used to cook pasta/peas. Add garlic and lemon zest and saute about one minute. (Do not let garlic turn brown!)
- Stir in lemon juice, salt and pepper. Add pasta and peas back to the pot and toss to combine.
- Add cooked shrimp* and red pepper flakes and stir to combine.
- Top with crumbled goat cheese.
*Shrimp is controversial in the real food world (see Jordin Rubin’s book The Maker’s Diet for more info.). My family chooses to eat shrimp in moderation, and we don’t feel bad about it in the least. 🙂 Alternate meat options that come to mind are canned, flaked salmon or cooked, cubed chicken. Or, just leave meatless for a light dinner, side dish or afternoon snack!
I’m also a huge fan of Anne’s Tuna Salad for Spring (although I usually sub the tuna with salmon).
What’s your favorite summertime pasta salad?
*I’ve included an affiliate link in this post.